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PSA: the trail is closed September 17th - 22nd and October 15th - 17th for routine maintenance.

I did not get a chance to hike the trail but I’ve heard nothing but good things!

“Easy/moderate/hard are relative terms. I’m not a great biker, but I am a stubborn persistent hiker. This was Harder than I expected- especially at the end. I finished, but my feet are paying for it. Warm September day- drank all my water plus some. Views were beautiful and so was the company. Glad to say I have completed an iconic Fort Collins hike.

The trail is (very) narrow (in some parts), the distance hiked is 6300 feet one way. With an elevation gain of 1000 feet, it puts the average grade (incline) at 16%. Due to the volume of people (500 an hour, on the trail) You'll be pulling over a lot to give others the right of way, or they'll be doing the same.

This hike consists of a trail, with a creek rushing down the mountainside. 7 Small bridges will help you zigzag your way to the top, and although the distance is short (1.2 miles) to the top, the grade makes the hike a challenge. With large rock steps, loose dirt and pebbles. It should take about an hour or two to the top, and your descent will be twice as fast. Take time to enjoy the scenery, it's not a race. Don't kid yourself, take enough water as the natural water isn't pure, bacteria thrives in it.

Many people take an extended break at the top. The water is crystal clear, but not safe to drink. The waterfall hitting Hanging Lake makes this a National Landmark and a great place to zone out. Loved it, please don't damage it with graffiti or trash.

Lots of rocks, good incline, did not get all the way to the top. My dog was not feeling so good. Pretty views. I think it would be better early in the morning watch the sun come up. Will do again for sure.

The trail to the top is worth it, though it’s pretty short and soooo crowd. There is a few steep climbs along the way. I would go as early as possible and certainly not on the weekend. In may 2019, hikers will need a permit $ to hike this trail and moreover, they’ll have to take a shuttle to get to the trailhead.

hiking
4 days ago

The trip to the top is worth it! The views to Spouting Rock are neat where water coming through the rocks. The Hanging Lake’s water is clear as I have every scene anything.

Bring water and a snack or two and you will be fine.

Love this hike. Arrive early to avoid the crowds. Change to reservation / shuttle system scheduled for May 2019 - limiting usage to 615 per day. A welcome change.

Check out spouting rock - unique and impressive - just a short additional distance.

Perfect hike! Good mountain feel for being so close to town. Usual routine is to go up to the rock and go down the falls trail afterwards as a cool down. A bit of scrambling on the rock trail. Use caution when it's snowy/icy or during the night as it's easy to get off trail in certain areas. The falls look the best when runoff is well underway.

Hard climb if not used to altitude. Take an oxygen can and you’ll make it. One of the most beautiful places on Earth

Lots of great views!
We hiked up to Horsetooth Rock starting at 8:40 AM on a Sunday. The parking lot was almost full as we arrived. $6 to park and in we go.
The hike starts along gradual switchbacks and slowly gets steeper, picking up rocks and wood steps. It doesn’t get difficult until you’re near the top and climb up the rock itself. That requires hands.
All the way up you get views over Horsetooth Reservoir, Fort Collins and the plains. At the top, the view is 360 with views out to a big Rocky.
Nice trail for families, groups and going further into the hillls.

Pretty difficult if your not in shape, however the payoff is breath taking.

All above treeline tundra. Pikas, marmots, chipmunks. Cool 50F and no snow yet on September 4. Clear sky. No people on the trail contrary to Sniktau trail.

All uphill, very crowded, pay for parking

Beautiful and not too highly trafficked. Easy for kids.

It was a tough but beautiful hike and the top was absolutely breathtaking! A must, in my opinion! The very top was the hardest part of the hike.

This is one of the most beautiful places my wife and I have ever been!

I got there at 6:40a on the holiday weekend and the lot was practically empty. Apparently it was full by 7:30 so I’d say 7a is a safe bet. They do let people in as others leave, but they seemed to be waiting a while. Make sure you do Spouting Rock. It’s SUPER short and relatively flat. I think most people were too tired to go up until they realized how short it actually is.

Trail is tough but worth all the effort for the view at the top. Look forward to hiking it again in the future.

3:02 with a minor mix of trail running. It's more moderate.

hiking
17 days ago

Hiked the trail today with my wife, and even with the weather threatening nearly all day the hike was fantastic! We arrived at the trailhead later than anticipated at 10:30 after eating an awesome breakfast in Dillon. Somehow I guess I didn't anticipate the trailhead being something like 90 minutes from Breck in one of those mountain "can't get there from here" situations. Even at 10:30 we were only the fourth car in the lot, though there were a ton of campers along the creek. We only encountered a couple other kind folks on the trail, and none headed up when we were because of the threatening rain.

The hike overall was challenging for us, but not by any means "Hard" rated. After the creek crossing we huffed and puffed a little to get to the top. We were rewarded with awesome views and I had a chance to sit and glass for mountain goats (we saw some!). We were worried we didn't get to the "end" of the trail but saw a post in a carin that was otherwise unmarked. If we'd have kept going we'd have went to and over the pass itself -- not really the plan today.

hiking
20 days ago

This is a beautiful area right by downtown Boulder. The hike is basically all up hill with the same view (albeit pretty). Even on a Friday morning, the trail was very crowded. However, once you reach the top of this trail you have so many other options to split off onto on trails, which is what we did. The other trails help to add some more distance, some varied views, and much less crowds. The trails all seem fairly easy to link back to one another and not get too lost.

hiking
20 days ago

Beautiful view of the flatirons and lovely wildflowers.

Excellent! Low-Moderate difficulty in terms of elevation gain and terrain but the scenery at the top was well worth it! Hanging lake was beautiful and you can veer off once at the top to get to Spouting Rock for some additional natural beauty.

hiking
22 days ago

So beautiful!

Incredible hike, and pretty easy. Took about an hour and a half, including spouting rock and about 10 minutes at the lake. The lake is awesome!

A nice, but really really busy trail. Cool pond and waterfall at top, but not sure why it’s THAT popular. People wanting to be seen in their active wear perhaps... Sprouted rock was my fav part

Hiked 6.9 miles, took us about 4 hours. Took the falls route and then cut across and headed up to the rock. It was about 4 miles to the rock coming from that way. Unless you want to get in your steps I wouldn’t take the falls route unless it’s the time of the year where water is actually there...no water this time of year. Saw 5 deer and a rattle snake, lots of wildlife, beautiful trails, and so many options and directions to take. Highly recommend grabbing a map before you head up.

This trail is quite narrow for the most part, all uphill, and rocky so wear appropriate shoes. The view just right before you reach the lake for me is more amazing than the lake itself.

Wonderful hike! I would definitely say it's a Moderate hike, but I don't hike consistently. There's plenty of areas to stop for a rest, and take pictures of the lovely waterfalls along the trail. I got there at 7 am, and had no issues with parking, and the temperature was perfect outside. Lake at the top was beautiful, and well worth the hike.

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