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Great way to avoid the crowds along the way. Fun scrambling on Kelso Ride. Much easier than the Dragon's Head on the Ten Mile Range. If things look too hard, back up and take another approach, most it it really isn't that bad. I took this down because I started early and missed the turn off in the dark. Going down wasn't too bad, you just end up glissading down some skree at the top and that's not my favorite thing in the world.

I wouldn’t rate this trail as super difficult, but it could be challenging for a beginner hiker. Sweet views of Golden once you’re past the highway noise. Also, watch out for bikers as they fly down the trail!

Hit the trail at about 7am on a Saturday and it was great, not crowded but started to see more people in the way down, still not bad. Definitely strenuous, but I haven’t done many hikes lately so I’m not sure I’m the best judge. Pretty mellow first half until you climb between bear peak and south boulder peak, easy to hit both while you’re up there and each offers a little bit of a different view so definitely check both out (only adds like 20 minutes I’d say to the hike). Very pretty views and diverse vegetation from top to bottom which kept it interesting. My knees were shakin’ on the way down as there’s lots of rocks to go down but that’s only about 1/2 of the trail, as the first half is quite wide and gravelly. Would definitely do it again!

Being an avid hiker from East Tennessee, there was no hope for me. I completed the incline on my first day in Colorado, but my lungs paid dearly for it since I was not used to the elevation. I strongly suggest that you buy the "I completed the incline" sticker at the gift shop before hand and use that as motivation to get to the top. Overall once you make it to the top, the view is worth it as well as the sense of cheating death and accomplishment. Pack water, food, needle cheast decompressor and a good camera to document your humility.

Gorgeous view. Great walk from the town up to Red Rock.

fun trail, you'll get your cardio in!

Hands down one of the most fun climbs up a 14er! Definitely more climbing than hiking!

Ok, so this hike is brutal only because it is so long. I did it all, so 26 miles, starting no at 6am. It took me 6 hours to climb to the summit, and I’m not an amazing athlete though I’m athletic. It then also took me 5 hours to get down the mountain. The hike is easy when it comes to actually climbing and the terrain, but the altitude makes it hard. The trails are well marked and clear. This is my second 14er and I found it to be easier than the other one that I did, Elbert. Of you are thinking about doing it, do a steady pace and take as few of breaks as possible. When hiking at high altitude, take super short and frequent 30 second breaks opposed to less infrequent 10 minute breaks. You’ll get up the mountain way faster. Overall it’s great, but the tourists at the top are really annoying so there’s that.

hiking
4 days ago

UPDATED: The hike from Echo Lake to Idaho Springs Reservoir was beautiful, and only moderately challenging. Rocky, rooty and some elevation. We hiked to Idaho Springs Reservoir to fly fish Chicago Creek as it enters, but there was not much access and the creek was very small, so not worth the hike. We did catch a few small trout in the actual reservoir while we were out there, but overall, we won't be heading that way to fish again. If you are going to fish the reservoir, I'd recommend a spin rod to go after fish farther out in the lake.

scenic driving
4 days ago

Easy and beautiful scenery, plus close to the amphitheater and other lookout points as well

Gorgeous area. If going on the weekend, get there early, parking lot does fill up, and area from echo lake to the Idaho Springs reservoir can get quite busy. Well shaded, good distance, pretty lakes, creek, and reservoir. Also dog friendly, expect to see a few. Highly recommend this hike!

hiking
6 days ago

a beautiful hike

hiking
6 days ago

I started this hike at 7:30 a.m. (second car in the otherwise empty parking lot) on a Monday and returned somewhere between 1:15-1:30 p.m. This hike was definitely challenging for me as a flatlander and I had to stop to take breaks quite often. I also spent quite a long time up at the lake *maybe 45 minutes or longer) and took another longer break during my return at the reservoir to soak my feet before making the final uphill climb. I think this hike is moderate for people who live at altitude and hike regularly, or who are otherwise very fit. If you're not much of a fitness enthusiast and don't workout very often, this is going to be a very challenging hike. If you're fit-ish to average on physical activity, this hike is challenging.

It really surprised me to see so many folks without adequate hydration and starting later. Do yourself a favor and start by 7:30 a.m. because there isn't much shade after you get passed 10:30 a.m. All of the regular rules apply: bring sunscreen and reapply once you're up at the lake, wear a hat and sunglasses, bring more water than you think necessary, and pack loads of snacks. I brought 64 ounces of water and drank about 3/4 of it. Didn't encounter too many bugs other than curious bees at the lake. The only wildlife I encountered were birds (saw an eagle at Echo Lake first thing) and chiding squirrels. Trail rules indicate dogs are required to be leashed but most were off-leash - doesn't bother me but it's something to consider if you don't like dogs.

Some additional navigation tips:
-Once you complete the initial descent and get closer to the water, look out for the primitive log bridge to cross
-Exiting the woods, take a left to follow the access road for about a mile; if you're early in the day, you'll pass the Idaho Springs Reservoir and see trout jumping out of the water to feed.
-Follow the access road past the cabins; the trailhead will be ahead on your right with a no-fee permit station. Fill out your permit and take the trail immediately in front of you, not the unmarked trial to your right.
-You'll pass a second sign indicating that you're entering the Mt. Evans Wilderness; don't worry, you're on the right trail.
-I tried finding the trail to the upper lake and was unsuccessful. I ended up following some of the unmarked trails that go around the lake and wound up in a boggy area just before the lake. Maybe avoid that and do more research on picking up the trail to the upper lake than I did.

Me encantó la experiencia,excelente si lo
recomiendo.

hiking
8 days ago

They aren’t kidding-this is an extreme hike. But it was awesome!!

Walked this on the way down from the Incline. A bit steep in spots with beautiful scenery.

hiking
8 days ago

Great hike! It took us about 4 hours, not including the 20 or so minutes we spend at the top. Great views and plenty of places where the dogs can drink water from streams and lakes.

Amazing hike. Not that hard at all. Saw big horn sheep, mountain goats, and lots of marmots. Spectacular views

I like to do the Peak at least once a year. It’s a nice challenge and worth it. The ascent took me 6 hours but I have done it in 4 1/2. Not my best time, obviously. I believe the average time for ascent is 8 hours. I did the ascent and descent for a total time of 11 hours. The last couple of miles are the hardest and my brain always says, “why am I doing this”! But, you just push through it and are happy to get to the top.

Make sure to dress in layers. The weather can change quickly. I like to take a camelback and I don’t bring much food. I’m just not real hungry.

The change in the terrain is always interesting It’s beautiful country. Thankful to have it as my backyard.

Total miles my app recorded was 23.85 miles.

hiking
9 days ago

Definitely a challenging trail. I’m in good shape but being from a lower elevation, I felt pretty winded at times. With breaks I still took about 4 hours with a half hour break at the peak. The view was worth it for sure. Highly recommend getting an early start since the trail is in the full sun at the beginning.

10 days ago

This hike borders on moderate to hard. A fairly mild incline with a few steeper sections. We have run into a large bear on this trail so be alert and be prepared for what to do. We had to turn around the last time when the big guy would not back off and grant us passage.

Many huge red rocks to see. However, I think the most worthwhile spot is the amphitheater.

I love this trail. beautiful views, not too far from golden.

Nice hike, relatively easy with lots of flatter areas. The reservoir and Chicago lakes themselves are pretty. Relatively quiet on a Thursday am. Took me 4 hours rt

hiking
11 days ago

Tough hike!! Had to take a lot of breaks!! The accomplishment of getting to the top feels great but I don’t need to do it again!!

This hike took us just under 7 hours. You’ll be going downhill at the start of the hike so be prepared to go uphill at the end. We ended recording about 11 miles going to the upper lake then back to the parking lot. It was a beautiful hike and I’d definitely do it again.

Close to Golden, so quite busy. Close to the road leading to Lookout Mountain. So nowhere you really can’t hear the road. The views are nice though. Does get hot. Many mountain bikers, so stay alert.

Extremely difficult but definitely worth it!

Beautiful hike ... LONG hike, but beautiful. Totally worth it!

Felt like such an accomplishment getting to the top. I’m probably average as far as endurance fitness goes and this was a grind, especially half way up when it gets steeper. Had to take a breather every 50 steps near the end there, but I’m glad I didn’t bail out early and kept going to the summit. Took the Barr trail back down and it’s pretty mellow with tons of switchbacks. Some sections are very narrow and people like to run down, so keep an ear open for people running up behind you.

I got to the start around 6:15am and ended up paying the $10 parking because I didn’t know any better, but it was nice having my car close. I’m told there is other parking in manitou and a shuttle that runs to the trailhead every 20 mins. Might try that next time to save money. The parking lot was packed by 8am when I got back down, make sure you go early to beat the heat and crowds.

My only complaint is that some of the steps are washed out between, just gotta be careful on some spots. Very tough hike for me, but worth it!

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