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Beautiful views!!

Hiked this today, I'd definitely recommend microspikes. I ran into a lot of people having very bad times on the trail with just shoes. Personally, I turned around right after the waterfall - lots of steepness/ice and I was a bit anxious since snow and ice earlier on the trail had started melting. I did run into a few people who either got to Lake of Glass or all the way to Sky Pond, so it's definitely doable if you know what you're doing.

hiking
2 days ago

Challenging on the way up, but worth it. We hiked around 1pm and it took us 1.5 hours to get to the top. We encountered many other hikers. Unfortunately, this trail attracts a lot of people who don’t have respect for nature. It was hard to get a good picture with so many people around and it was even harder to enjoy with the amount of people talking around you. If I could do it again, i would go at 7 AM and avoid the crowds. This hidden little “lake” truly is a gem. Side note: it only took us 40 minutes to get back down.

There was just a patch of ice.... the rest was all dry.

Hiked this today. Most of the trail is covered in snow and ice— definitely need microspikes, especially for the last half mile. Past Lake of Glass the trail is hard to find. Snow is deep and the path beat in through the snow is not the actual trail and can be hard to follow. Weather was absolutely perfect!

My wife and I made it all the way up with only our hiking boots. We both agree that going up with crampons would have been better. We had one slip/fall on an icy decline. Plus going up the water fall just below Lake of Glass was a little dicey, but a decent amount of people made it up and back down. We enjoyed trotting our snow pants up and put them on for the decent so we could “sled” down some of the steeper areas. Others were jealous. Overall we loved our trip. Walked over a frozen lake and Sky pond was just beautiful to celebrate our 5th anniversary.

Really beautiful and super fun, but definitely needed our crampons. Poles would have been helpful on occasion as well. I wouldn’t advise doing this one so late in the season unless you have the right gear for snow and ice.

Trail is boot-packed snow and ice the entire way, so yaktrax were helpful. Helene and Odessa were both frozen over, but still well worth the views. Trail earns its moderate rating as you ascend back up to Helene after Odessa (I can see why people one-way this trail and include Fern Lake). This is definitely a less trafficked trail out of the Bear Lake area—didn’t see a soul for over two hours with a sunrise start.

Full on winter conditions up there now. Micro-spikes or other traction control would be advisable. The trail is well packed snow/ice. I didn't go further than Sky Pond due to the deep snow.

Beautiful trail!! Couldn’t make it up the waterfall (covered in ice) without crampons but the views were still gorgeous.

The BEST hike, I did it in July in 3 days and it was the hardest but most fulfilling thing I have ever done in my life.

Get a good water filter, tent, rain gear (a must), the usual. We had to have a beat canister when we went and it was SO heavy, and doesnt get much lighter throughout the trip due to "bring it in bring it out." Next time we will use those bear bag type deals, much lighter and you're still able to rent those.

Its amazing, I am not in the best shape but not in bad shape and it was hard but not discouraging by any means! Have fun!!!

As Galen noted below, heavy snow drifts up above Lake of Glass. Difficult to distinguish any trail in the snow. Found myself somewhat unprepared for this level of snow. I felt this trail was overrated, but I bet the experience is better in the summer.

Beautiful views wherever you go! Challenging backpacking!

Beautiful. Even with deep snow, the entirety of the hike was wonderful. Moose, Steller’s Jay and lost of views. Scrambled up the frozen waterfall to Lake of Glass, but the trail disappeared into chest-deep snow. Loch Vale was lovely too. Truly, we loved it all.

Steady climb. The views half-way up exceeded the actual lake view, but it was a nice hike with some icy stairs.

I did this trail and tracked it on my Fitbit, I knew my Fitbit would track the distance a little less than what the distance really is from my experience but it was a little more than six miles one way to Lake Verna from the East trailhead. It was totally worth it but I’m not sure what everyone is smoking to think it’s 12.9 round trip. I was tracking at least 15 Miles total. The sign at the trailhead can not be accurate unless it’s tracking the river that comes from the lake, before you actually get to the huge lake. We didn’t see any wild life and we were the only ones on the trail for a few hours. We started around 8:30am and arrived at 1:30pm. We headed back at 2:00pm and got to the parking lot around 5:30pm. It was beautiful but don’t underestimate the distance and the amount of hills that are required to climb to get to the lake.

Enjoyable shortish day hike. Lake is SMALL. Views back over Estes Park and of RMNP and great!

I’m new to backpacking with this being my second trip ever. My son is an experienced hiker and he is the reason I got into doing these types of trips. We like the ease of hiking loops from a logistical standpoint so when we found this one, it was a no brained that we had to give it a go.

This trail was very difficult for me. I am not in the best physical shape but I am mentally strong which I believe is a good part of being able to successfully complete a hike like this one. There is thin air, cold, rain, hail and tough elevation changes. This can all beat you down if you can’t handle the mental aspect.

We completed the hike in 4 days in early August. Other than the rain on a couple days and the hail coming up over the passes, the weather was ok. I’m not sure there would have been a better time to hike this.

Would I do it again? Not sure. It took my knees a couple of weeks to recover from the beating they took going down the passes. The views were breathtaking and as is usually the case, pictures just don’t do it justice.

Great hike, but beware, October brings unpredictable weather. We just hiked this in rain, sleet, and snow. Beautiful views, and amazing colors!

One of the best trails I've ever been on in my life. All sorts of different scenic views and the grand finale of Sky Pond (after climbing a waterfall) to reward you for your hard work on the hike.

What an amazing hike! This is the second time I have done this hike, the first being in January where everything was covered in snow. We arrived at the Glacier Gorge trail head around 730am and got one of the last parking spots despite the weather being not ideal. Guess a little snow doesnt stop anyone here. There were a lot of low hanging clouds and fog but it started to snow lightly as we got to the Loch. The little snow fall, no wind, and cloudy skies made for amazing scenery! The waterfall was flowing and as beautiful as it is in the summer. The best part of the hike is the waterfall scramble you have to do to get up to the lake of Glass is not frozen which made it so much easier. The Lake of Glass was incredible but dont stop there! Sky Pond was and is one of the most gorgeous sites in the park and probably the rockies. The Shark Teeth are even better from the top of the lake. There was a little wind but nothing that should stop anyone from hanging out and taking it in.
We went through the trail seeing very few people starting off the day but on our way down, the crowds really picked up. Always start as early as you can to really enjoy the park.

Me and my two dogs hiked this today. We started at 8 AM and it took 2 1/2 hours to get up there. The hike was so beautiful I kept stopping to take pictures. This might have been the prettiest hike I’ve ever been on! I highly recommend this hike

This hike remains one of my favorites in RMNP. There is so much to adore in 8 miles: you traverse aspen groves, walk the shore of The Loch, Pass Timberline Falls, scramble up steep and gorgeous rocky sections of the trail and then are rewarded with Lake of Glass and Sky Pond almost back to back. Sky Pond has a stunning turquoise color in the sunshine. Keep an eye out for elk near the Trailhead - they frequently hang out there. Plan to park in the Glacier Gorge Park and Ride and take the free shuttle to the trailhead. The Trailhead parking lot is small and fills up almost instantly. The hike has strenuous sections that will give you a good workout but isn’t uphill the entire way.

Started at 12pm to Sky Pond by 2:30pm. Stopped to take lots of pictures and eat. Took the loop back thru Lake Haiyaha. Gorgeous views. Fun hike.

Fantastic trail with great views throughout. Variety of stops on this trail provided places to stop and grab snacks with a great view. The hardest section is the scramble, and my wife and I almost turned back just a half mile or so from the end. So glad we decided to go through with it. There were plenty of other hikers around, though I wouldn’t describe it as crowded. Highly recommended!!

hiking
19 days ago

My two coworkers and I did this hike last Sunday (9/30), and it may have been one of the prettiest treks we have ever done!

It took us about 4 and 1/2 hours to complete this hike (including 30 minutes of leisure time at the Mill while having lunch/swimming) after driving up from Denver to Marble.

As everyone has stated in their previous reviews, the amount of Jeep/ATV traffic was a bit frustrating at times, but we didn't let that deter us from enjoying our perfect day!

The road up to the trailhead is unpaved, but if you have a vehicle with decently high clearance, you can eliminate about 0.6 miles of hiking (roundtrip) by parking in the area at the top of the hill.

This was a very moderate hike that runs along the Crystal River for the vast majority of the trek. The fall colors were in full bloom as well, which made this one of the most beautiful hikes to take in Colorado’s magnificent foliage.

Once you get the Mill, there is a $10 per person fee to go under the rope and view it from the water (which we did), but you can also view it from the roped off section on the road. I would highly suggest this option, as we had lunch on a rock next to the waterfall and I even jumped in to cool off!

All in all, this is one of the more rewarding hikes I have ever done in terms of scenery. The only reason I gave this trek 4 stars instead of 5 was the amount of traffic on the road. Would definitely return sometime during the week when the trail is a bit less congested. A must do for anyone in the area!

Amazing trail! There were beautiful views...and I loved that the stretches of incline were balanced with easier portions of trail where I could catch my breath. The last mile was pretty tough, but we had a lot of fun scrambling up the rock to Lake of Glass. The views from the Lake of Glass were the BEST, but keep going to Sky Pond - the view of Sharks Tooth peaks were worth the extra trek.

Definitely my favorite hike from our RMNP vacation!

Started at 7:00 on a weekday in early Oct. A handful of cars in the parking lot but saw no one above Alberta Falls until the descent from Sky Pond then there was a constant stream of people going up. Parking lot was full upon my return at 10:30.
Nice hike. Personal opinion is this is a tweener hike, mostly moderate but can reasonably be rated hard based on a couple sections.
Enjoyed the picas at Sky Pond and the Stellar’s jay and snowshoe hare along the way. Would like to repeat this hike when there’s snow on the peaks.

This was an amazing hike with incredible views! Hike is definitely more moderate especially from Glacier Gorge trailhead until the second fork. Elevation gain/stairs/switchbacks between the second fork and The Loch. Last mile is challenging with tons of stairs and elevation gain. If you're from somewhere flat and low elevation like me, make sure to save your energy for that last mile! You do have to scramble up Timberline Falls which is wet and icy - so make sure your shoes are right for the job. Lake of Glass is beautiful but the last little bit between Lake of Glass and Sky Pond was some of my favorite of the whole hike! The trail isn't marked super clearly, but you'll be able to find your way if you follow the cairns. Right down the hill from Sky Pond is a great little waterfall with some grass that makes for an awesome/quiet lunch spot away from the wind and crowds.

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