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Nice trail, well marked & maintained. We did a 12 mile loop, beautiful day, hardly any bikes or other hikers. It was a weekday in mid-October, however.

Good trail with great views from Windy Peak. Don’t forget your $7 to park.
Found a perfect spot to hang the hammocks and chill.

A bunch of moose, a bunch of lakes

hiking
11 days ago

Beautiful! Nice fall hike featuring some golden aspens and a couple waterfalls. In the early morning it was a misty hike through a cloud, which I thought made the whole experience even cooler.

Awesome trail! Couple of inches of snow on the trail this morning! Time to start whipping out cross country skiis and snow shoes!

This hike was incredible! Did it on 10/6. Road going up is a little wild, but not too terrible. Lots of snow at the top, still enough that you can walk on top. But I didn’t have hiking boots and my feet got pretty wet. Stunning stunning views!! You park at the Fourth of July trailhead.

Did this counterclockwise and thoroughly enjoyed it. Fascinating mix of super wide gravel road, steep rocky single track (moments of scrambling even) and a descent on long deteriorating asphalt. Views were great and dam, causeway and canyon walls fun to admire. Dogs off leash on the single track only (about 40%) but that worked for me.

hiking
16 days ago

Nice, easy - moderate fall hike. Get there soon before the leaves fall. I would recommend a higher clearance vehicle for the last four miles to the trail head. I drive a Subaru Impreza and bottomed out more than once.

We went last week and this hike was perfect! It was sunny and cool, but still warm enough to be comfortable. The aspens are changing color - the perfect autumn scenery. We were lucky - all of the snow is fully melted!

dogs are only allowed on leash for the first 3.1 miles, before the trail cruises into Rocky Mountain Wilderness Area, where pets are not allowed at all. I was really looking forward to this hike, and thus, pretty annoyed when I arrived to the very clearly marked trailhead. the stream along the trail was completely dry in late Sept, not that surprising, but still disappointing. & there was little to no foliage along the trail that i COULD do with my pup, which I was looking forward to, but that's not the trail or AllTrails' fault that there weren't many aspens along the route. I wish I'd planned my day currently.

Careful on the drive up! There's a good stretch of dirt road with lots of big rocks that can be difficult to drive over. We got to the trailhead around 8:30 in the morning and it wasn't very crowded at all. Absolutely gorgeous trail with a good incline. Weather was pleasantly cool and crisp until the way down when it got hot (and kind of crowded) in the afternoon. There was a really neat waterfall about 2/3 of the way to the lake, and the lake was stunning, but very windy. Beautiful hike. We took it super slow on the way down because I managed to hurt my leg. Hahah, we still had fun!

Ah, this was a great hike. I went with my dog last Saturday and we had a blast. Arrived at the trailhead around 7am. It was pretty busy but still over 10 spots available. I started on Hessie Trail and went to Lost Lake. After Lost Lake, I hiked on Devils Thumb for a few miles. We turned around about 2miles from Jasper Lake because we were short on time. Wish I could’ve made it to the lake because the weather was perfect. My Fitbit said we went 12miles. Not sure how accurate it is though. We got back to my car around 11ish. Lots of cars waiting for parking and crowds of people on the trail. Again, so glad we got there early and hope to go back to hike to the lake soon.

Nice views but mainly service road hiking. Well marked and plenty of water for pooches. Nice designated off leash trails for the dogs.

Solid trail and drive up. Little sketchy if you’re driving in a car but fun nonetheless. Beautiful waterfall along the trail and absolutely gorgeous destination at Diamond Lake.

This was an awesome trail, be ready to climb. With an almost nonstop gain in elevation until you reach the lake this is definitely an awesome workout with views that make up for every step you climb. Check out my IG for pictures from the hike @alvarado_dan_

Great hike. Few other travelers this time of year mid week. Only problem we had was getting there. We have a compact front wheel drive and the last 30 min were on a dirt/ gravel road with quiet a few ruts. The hike and the lake were definitely worth it.

hiking
22 days ago

Great trail! Weekend of Sept 23rd, fall colors were in full bloom on the drive there.

hiking
22 days ago

Golden Gate Canyon never disappoints. Another awesome solo hike. Did entire Mountain Lion trail / Quarry Site / Tallman Ranch Loop. It was closer to 10 miles than the 7 or so originally listed including a few trail offshoots. The Aspen leaves are all just about to fall off and the yellows are peaking out right now. Once the sun went down it dropped from about 65 degrees to 39 degrees in about 10 minutes.

trail running
22 days ago

I would say this trail is between easy and moderate. Going into the trail it is all downhill so coming back is pretty much all uphill. Lots of shade, nice views. Also no crowds and I got there around 9:30 am! If you have a vehicle with some ground clearance (small SUV and larger) you should be fine getting up the road.

Beautiful hike up to the top. VERY Rocky trails so make sure you have good ankle support. Also it's a long one, definitely bring snacks and lots of water.
**WARNING**
There is a male moose starting to make a home within the first mile of the trail, small blue and white flags to the right of the trail mark where a new trail is being created to avoid getting into his territory. The flags are difficult to see as you come up the trail but look carefully - they don't make the trail much longer and it keeps you safe from a defensive bull moose.

hiking
23 days ago

Pretty view of the canyon and the aspens. Beautiful colors. Starts off a little steep but the rear of the trail is not bad at all. Decent amount of shade. Went early and trail was pretty empty, but by 11 passed more and more hiking in. Went passed the barn and hike a trail behind up towards the hills behind it and back to the barn before heading out. About another mile around the barn. Total of 5.3 miles there and back.

Got pushed off Hessie this week due to parking space, so came back to brainard area. Always solid hiking. Completed the Waldrop, long lake, brainard winter loop circuit with the usual team. Great weather and trails are usually free from crowding regardless of number of cars in the lot. Will return to do other loops at other times

Completed this hike on Saturday 9/22. This may be one of the most beautiful hikes I have done. Not too bad of an elevation gain but certainly not easy at some points. Luckily, it was the perfect blue sky day with a little wind at the top to cool us off when we reached to top. The views at the lake are incredible and we could have spent all day there if we did not have somewhere else to be. Take a walk around the entire lake to gain a different perspective of just how amazing it is.
The parking lot was oddly packed, as in full at this trail head and almost all the road parking taken for lost lake around 630am. A lot of people were backpacking on this trail and also splitting off to diamond lake. I think as long as the weather stays good and the road open, plan on either starting early or do something later in the day.

This is a go-to trail, the only thing that keeps me from giving it 5 stars is that almost half of the trail is a dirt road, but there are beautiful creek views along the road. There’s a little bit of everything, shade, sun, flat, steep and great views. Bring sunscreen, the road has little shade.

hiking
25 days ago

tons of people, even more dogs. fall color coming to an end. trail was great. not easy but not hard. nice workout indeed...any vehicle can make it to the trailhead if you drive slow enough

hiking
25 days ago

Be prepared for butt punishment on the way back up. WOW.

Okay, let's start from the beginning. As it says, it can be confusing, and I really thank Allison Meyers for her description of where to go. As you go on the dirt road, it will eventually come to a fork and you want to go UP the hill off to the left to get to the lot. Now my friend and I ended up parking below the lot, as we weren't so sure our car would like the slightly rocky and lumpy terrain. I saw a minivan get high centered right in front of my car! It is absolutely doable, but there are some spots that suck.

THE HIKE: Beautiful! Going down, you get shade and forest and meadows... it is single file hiking through forest or meadow, but it is so pretty. The homestead was great to see...there is an old stove or something and for some reason, a box spring mattress bottom. So confused how it got there!! But a good relic of the past. The rest of the way was pleasant and we almost stopped, however I recalled seeing that there was a river or water feature up ahead, so we soldiered on. The path has washed away and there are a few tricky areas. I had to slide on my butt on the way back... so steep!
The water area was gorgeous and as others have said, I heard the 2013 flood washed away the rest of the area. :( But the water was great to sit and take a breather.

STARTING BACK- we felt it was confusing to figure out how to get back to the path... thankfully, there was a wonderful woman who had put up blue flags (she told us it was her!) to let others know where to get back onto the main path was. If she wasn't there, we would've panicked just a bit. Thank you! Hopefully her tie bags stay on...it was helpful to know where to go to get back. You get disoriented with that many rocks and don't recall where you came from! Take note of where you came from!

THE HIKE BACK... this is the firepower. It is hard, IMO. Some sections are OK and others are butt burning up the hill, "I want to live here so I don't move again" type hills. Our dogs were getting tired. It really kicks it back up a notch from the homestead area back up towards the car. I felt so rewarded going back to the car, like we really worked hard! We had tired dogs and some had to get carried. LOL
This was tough to get back up the hills, especially in warm weather.

I'm toast. But that was a great hike for a late Sept day. There were enough people to feel comfortable that you weren't going to die in the woods alone, lol..but there were maybe 6 or 7 groups total...it isn't a Boulder Chatauqua type busy hike! I would do this again now that I know what we are getting into. :)

Perfect weather for a hike. Absolutely loved the trail and the view.

We got there around 10.30 am and the parking was bit tight. (I'd recommend either early morning or later when people start leaving). The dirt road leading to the trail head was bit off-roady (recommend a high clearance vehicle)

Trail traffic was not bad at all and trail was mostly shaded. We were not used to the high altitude, so had to take small rests frequently on the way. It took us a little more than 4 hours totally (including half an hour break at the lake for a snack). We logged about 6 miles totally!!!

hiking
25 days ago

$7 to park at the trail head . Plenty of parking both times we visited .
Well signposted trail with options to switch or explore other trails on the route.

hiking
25 days ago

Great day hike, it took me about an hour and half in and an hour back, walking at a casual pace.

I got there at 10am on a Saturday and there were still a few parking spots...and plenty of spots open in the afternoon if you're ok with waiting for an afternoon hike.

Definitely some people but not overly crowded at all, there were several moments along the trail when we were alone without anyone in sight ahead or behind us.

Great views! Not easy to get lost. LOL. Very straightforward. There were some rocky and steep areas, but overall, it was great. My dog loved it! There weren’t too many folks in the early am. I loved the views and that it was close to town. Great! And def moderate.

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