Explore Hikes 2018 - view hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

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Good, easy hike with kids. Plenty of shade, nice views toward the end of the trail. Waterfall and creek are dried up, I am sure it is more beautiful with higher water.

my favorite trail. starts out pretty easy but the last mile is pretty difficult. stick through it to be rewarded at the top. awesome flowers and water along the way to the top. easy to get to right off the highway.

The hike was absolutely beautiful! There were a lot of wildflowers and the views at certain points were breathtaking. It was certainly not an easy hike {especially if you’re pregnant}, but definitely worth it! A lot of cute doggos adventuring, too! :)

Perfect day hike with our dogs. Lots to see and enjoy at a leisurely pace...took us 2 hours to do the loop. Highly recommend.

hiking
1 day ago

On a whim I was looking for something relatively short with some elevation gain since I just moved to Denver and hunting season will soon be upon us. Driving there was pretty easy as the road looks like it was just graded this spring or early summer. don't get going too fast or your tail end will try to come around! There's a five mile dirt road approach that looks highly seasonal, but is fine for all but the lowest cars if you're careful and avoid the potholes and go slowly over washboarding.

The hike itself is nice and relatively gentle elevation gain. I'd recommend some trekking poles for the rocky path you have to take, or perhaps just some sturdy ankle support wielding boots. I'd absolutely come back here, it looks like the trail goes further than the last lake but I didn't have a GPS and it began to look like a goat path. For another day then.

Now one of my top five all-time favorites. First time I have done this hike. Only went to Blue Lake—didn’t do the rock scramble up to Little Blue Lake. Has a little bit of everything: river crossings, valley views, lake views, etc. I prepared for mosquitos after seeing all the reviews where people got eaten alive, but we went mid-August and some of the wet areas were dried up, so I’m thinking the breeding grounds weren’t as plentiful. We didn’t see a single mosquito. Most of the wildflowers were done, but there were still some blooming here and there. We saw a female moose and her baby lounging in a meadow. On the way back we saw a bull moose across one of the ponds. Also saw various other smaller wildlife. Nice to have facilities right at the trailhead. Went on a Thursday morning at 8 am and got in no problem, but there were plenty of cars in the parking lot.

Great hike. If you're going to go, get there early. Parking fills up and then you have to wait to even get in the park. The path is a little rocky, but not bad and the views are awesome.

Awesome trail! I would mark it on the easier side of moderate solely because of the distance, otherwise it was a pretty easy trail. The trail is mostly shaded which was nice. The wild flowers and the wild raspberries were fun to look at and my dogs enjoyed the access to the lake. I went counterclockwise and think I would prefer to go that route again.

Good for my old dog.

Beautiful trail - definitely spend some time by the lake if you can! I went in the afternoon on a weekday and it wasn't too busy.

hiking
2 days ago

Nice varied trail. Nice lake destination at the end. I arrived at 8am and there were only a few cars in the parking lot. I had the lake all to myself for a half hour, and then only 6 other people were there for the next half hour. On the way down I did pass 50 people hiking up. So maybe get there early because it is pretty peaceful. I wish people didn’t leave their dog poop bags all over the trails though. Just why????????

Wonderful trail! Always busy, get there early..

Didn’t get up to area until 10:30am, on a Monday however no trouble parking at brainard lake parking. Beautiful lakes, meandering paths until you reach Mitchell lake then it is rocky path up to blue lake which is not difficult to navigate. Trails very well marked. Did not attempt little blue, however, it must be beautiful. I can only imagine. It must be a very steep rocky ascent. It wasn’t overly crowded however once at blue lake you certainly see and hear others. I can’t imagine it with more people. We did have a moose sighting which was a gift. This hike is now one of my must dos during my annual visit Home to Boulder

backpacking
4 days ago

Lot was full by 10am but we squeezed on the road. We read there wasn’t many backpacking spots - and I found maybe 3, but were too close to water or the trail. We found if you go past (between) the final lakes and keep going (careful, the trails spur and we got turned around), you follow a stream on your right after 1/2 mi to approx 3 sites spread by a few hundred feet. It was a good first backpacking trip for my 7yo. There was plenty of water, moderate temps, and while we saw a bunch of bugs, only really got one or two bites. We encountered a cow moose about 30 feet off the trail about half way up!

I think technically this is in the Indian Peaks Wilderness and you need a permit in summer, but, sorry, it is ridiculous to print a form and mail a $5 check or to go to the office. Let me do it online. https://www.fs.usda.gov/recarea/arp/recarea/?recid=80803

Overall it's not a trail I'd be super excited to get back to or take anyone to, but it was a nice short hike with shade most of the way. The final lakes/ponds are pretty with some views of the surrounding ridges. The lakes are small with quite a few people crowded around fishing or lounging. The first lake you pass is mosquito heaven and pretty yucky.

hiking
5 days ago

It's past peak wildflower season, but there were still some pretty blooms up near the top. Please be mindful that this trail is quite steep and rocky for the first mile and the last mile, so if you're bringing dogs or kids, make sure they have proper footwear (yes-- PLEASE put shoes on your dogs to protect their paws!!). View from the trail just before you hit the lake is gorgeous. Go early to avoid the crowds, we arrived at the TH just after 8:00 AM and snagged one of the last parking spaces. It was windy and chilly up at Herman Lake so bring layers!

hiking
5 days ago

Went hiking on 8/11 and it was great! Got there early around 6:30 and their was plenty of parking. Definitely recommend getting there early to beat the crowds and have the lake and trails to yourself. Coming down it was starting to get overly crowded. Last half mile was a little tough but well worth the views.

Great trail!! Some narrow parts with a slight hill but smooth easy walking the entire way!! Brought my dog on both occasions and it was great! Great views, beautiful trees. Peaceful and quiet. Not too many people despite the amount of cars in the parking lot.

great for a family hike.

Great hike, a few steeper spots but generally easy. We saw almost no people on the trail which is increasingly difficult in the front range.

Beautiful hike on August 6, 2018.

Don’t be scared off by the incline at the beginning. Great views throughout the entire trip, very wooded in some areas and not in others. We clocked about 7.5 miles round trip.

Beautiful and very easy

Great hike, some steep parts, but I really noticed the incline more on the way down due to the trail being a bit loose. Great views though, lots of wild flowers, pretty lake at the end. Parking g lot fills up real fast, got there at 8am and it was already overflowing to side streets.

Took kids and dog. trail was lovely and shady on a hot day. no waterfall...only a trickle but climbing around was fun. the reservoir was beautiful and we stayed there an hour just enjoining the calmness.

beautiful loop. Love the mountain view.

Very busy, however, well worth the trek.

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