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tricky hike. some parts very steep and rocky. went with kids (4 and 7) and they were capable - but we took several stops on the way up.
the payoff is the lake at the top and spouting rock. very beautiful.
as others mentioned, lots of people on the hike. this isn't so bad as most are friendly, but if you are looking for a serene hike this is not it. the real problem are the hikers who bring their dogs (not allowed) and cut the switchbacks (not allowed) etc.

took our young children and really enjoyed it! challenging but doable for them. plenty of shade and places to stop. breathtaking scenery.

there are a couple trailheads and I had trouble finding them. there are a few that have a small parking lot and then there's one at the end of a street. So there are a few ways to enter. The trail leads all over the place and it's hard to determine which way to go but if you follow the map you should be able to get there. There were only a few people there when I went and nice views.

Amazing!!! And worth the hike up!! ❤️ Spouting Rock was spectacular as well!!

hiking
11 hours ago

Awesome hike, but very steep at times. If hiking with younger children, be prepared to take frequent rests, water breaks and snacks. The view is worth the effort. Make note due to popularity, they will limit daily access to 615 people starting May 2019.

I realize that this is a relatively short hike, but I am still surprised that this isn't listed as "hard." The climb up to the lake is super steep with no switchbacks - you just follow the path of the creek the entire way up. The lake is, of course, pretty amazing. Deep turquoise water with trickling falls feeding it from the other side. Mossy rock faces and rugged canyon walls on either side of the valley.

Worthy of its reputation, for sure.

Definitely gets full of traffic early, and make sure everyone uses the restroom before you park; the restrooms at the entrance are the most disgusting things I’ve ever walked in and then immediately out of.

Beautiful views along the entire walk!

hiking
21 hours ago

Great route not to be missed if visiting area. Stay hydrated, especially if not used to altitudes.

This hike is beautiful and it is steep. The hike is not that far of a distance, but with the elevation gain it takes a lot longer than a normal 3 mile hike. The views are amazing and the lake at the top is magical. My favorite part is actually just before the lake where there is a wonderful look out of the steep, chiseled canyon. Not too many other places in the US where you can see something like that!
The drive through Glenwood canyon to get here in the first place is pretty spectacular, as the highway follows the river through the canyon. This hike follows another narrower side canyon. There were lots of people on the trail when we went on a Wednesday in August around lunch time. Parking was tight and we had to circle the lot a couple times before getting lucky and getting someone's spot as they left. Unfortunately there's nowhere else to park further away as the road only takes you right back to the highway entrance.
I would definitely recommend this hike for some great views and a beautiful blue lake, but be prepared to fight for parking and climb some elevation. Its definitely worth it!

Amazing!!!!!

Up and down

Gorgeous! Hike is moderate with trails easily marked. We saw many elk along the way. We took the shuttle from town because we arrived later in the day and couldn’t park at Big Bear of transfer station...they were full. It was a very pleasant drive up to the hike...and we could both admire the scenery!

This trail felt like walking through a fairy tail. Just too perfect. We arrived at 4:30, after the crowds were leaving; but the trail was still swamped with people. Completely worth the crowds. Just magical.

hiking
2 days ago

Great hike. Lots of shade and nice views. This would be a great hike in the fall as well with all of the aspen! Lovely wildflowers!

Hard but short hike up! Totally worth it a

The view was worth the hike!

hiking
3 days ago

My wife and I did this yesterday. Nice trail with wildflowers and great scenery. It is a combination of open fields of wildflowers and areas with large shady aspens. There were also some wild raspberries and blueberries (or possibly huckleberries) along the trail of which I munched on here and there. I would recommend hiking shoes as the trail can be rocky in places although I did see many folks in tennis shoes along the trail. There were several steep places where a trekking pole came in handy. I'm 63 and about 220 lbs and I find a single trekking pole helps balance and knees on the steps. My wife and I made it to the falls in 1 and 1/2 hours. I'm from a southern low land area but we've been here about 5 days to get somewhat acclimated to the elevation. While getting a bit winded at times, it wasn't that bad. Would do this again.

hiking
3 days ago

As with many others, this was my first "fourteener" and it was a blast. Couldn't of asked for better weather. Stayed in Georgetown, and got to the Guanella pass parking lot at approximately 0600. Yes, it was already full, however the summit overlook parking lot still had spaces left.I'm a flatlander from northeast Ks. but went prepared. Took my time, with frequent breaks, especially the higher I got. The scramble to the top was probably the toughest part, but by that point you've gone to far to not do it. While many folks, myself included, do Mount Bierstadt because their research reports it as being the easiest fourteener. Be forewarned - if you are a flatlander, even one who is in decent shape, there is nothing easy about trying to breathe at altitude.However do not let that dissuade you from doing this hike, as I can assure you that you will not be alone. Start to finish approximately 6 hours, half hour to 45 minutes on the summit.

It was a little longer than a mile, honestly wasn’t worth it. It was beautiful, don’t get me wrong but it’s so small and the fact you can’t swim in it anymore makes it out for a little disappointing. Other than that the trail has 7 bridges you cross before you get to the end, was super rocky and the scenic views were gorgeous.

excellent hike. beautiful

Vraiment beau paysage !!

hiking
4 days ago

Beautiful trail. Definitely arrive by 7:30 am to avoid heavy traffic. If you are not an early riser and always lucky, arrive around 10 am to take the early birds' spots.

Great 14er for first timers and out of staters.

Beautiful scenery but there are better ones than this lake.

Really awesome hike - short but steep and worth it. Saw a snake around 1 pm today. Definitely got lucky with parking!

hiking
5 days ago

hiking
5 days ago

Says Hard but I don't think its hard. Beautiful trial.

hiking
5 days ago

Arrived at the trailhead around 4:45PM on Friday. Easy climb With most traffic coming down as we were going up. Only another 6 people at the lake at the same time. Still pretty, but looking rough. Since I was there in 2013 the lake is not as clean with trash was floating on the surface and foam covering the water up to about 10’ from shore. Disappointed and don’t expect to be back.

I am in Vail for a 9 week post-surgery checkup for my hip. I had a personal goal to do some hiking while in Vail. This trail was steep but had enough shade and flat surfaces that I was able to complete it! The hardest part, for me, is getting used to the elevation. Make sure to pack plenty of water and healthy snacks. I found a walking stick, which was very helpful. We took alot of breaks and completed the trail in and out in 5 1/2 hours. Great scenery and plenty of friendly, encouraging hikers along the way.

hiking
5 days ago

It's worth the uphill grade to see Emerald Lake. Very pretty and attainable.

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