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Very pretty with all the yellow foliage. Most of the hikes I do are on the east coast so I definitely felt a bit dizzy and took my time up the trail. Took me 6 hours. It got a bit windy while walking up which was nice and then the summit was oddly still. This was my first 14er. I passed a few people on the trail and everyone was very friendly. I didn’t feel like it was super crowded as other posts say. Maybe it was my timing. I left at 12:30 returned at 6:30pm on a Tuesday. Highly recommend this hike.

off road driving
1 day ago

The trailhead is on private property and completely blocked off. The road up is an easy off-road trail. That’s what we recorded. Super bummed.

The road to the trailhead was a brutal hike, but we got lucky and hitched a ride part of the way from I70. We aren’t “newbies” by any means but we don’t get to hike often, so this was a rough trail for us. We made it about 13,000 feet before turning around, but even at this point the views are amazing. It was a great hike, and moderately busy for a Monday morning.

Three of us hiked up to Blue Lake, then two of us made our way up to Little Blue Lake using the directions from AllTrails... Well we sort of lost the non-existent trail for a little bit...

The map, and the descriptions takes you through a fun but quite precarious boulder field. You would need to have great mobility to make that trip... Or perhaps there was an easier route we missed when we veered off course a tad.

On the return, we found a far easier way up/down following a cut-off which I will try to show in my labeled photo (the one with all the arrows). If you take the tiny trail up, you can zig-zag your way up and across terrain that is far easier to traverse than the boulder field.

It was magnificent, and while there were a fair few people on trail at 10am on that Saturday, it was far from crowded feeling. There was only one person that adventured all the way to Little Blue Lake while we were up there, so that was as serene as can be!

One moose was spotted nearish the trail towards the trailhead.

Gorgeous trail! I’m not the worlds most avid hiker and would still only rate the trail as moderate. The scramble wasn’t nearly as difficult or treacherous as I was expecting. I have a mild fear of heights and it didn’t phase me honestly. Definitely slightly overcrowded despite starting at 6:30am and finishing at 3pm (lots of stopping for views and extra walking around the lakes), although my boyfriend found a little lake to the side of Loch and proposed!!! Beautiful hike overall.

Make sure to keep going once you’re above the waterfall scramble to get to Sky Pond! We almost didn’t realize that Glass Lake wasn’t the end of the trail. Incredible hike - long, but not too strenuous.

(Be careful of aggressive elk!)

Great walk out here today. lovely views all the way up passing falls and loch on route. few people on the go but more than enough room to pass on the trail.small scramble before you reach the level of sky pond but ok for most levels of ability with care. would recommend

hiking
1 day ago

Loved this hike. It was my first hike in Colorado, so I definitely thought it was 'hard'. The ending at Sandbeach lake is beautiful and the hike along the way takes you through beautiful terrain. Highly recommend - especially coming from Denver.

Loved this hike! Great workout, beautiful views. We went from brainard lake, to Mitchell lake, to blue lake. We even saw a moose family along the way!

Beautiful hike through dense, lush forest. The lakes are a lovely ending. The hike was enough to get the blood flowing, but certainly not strenuous.

Great trail. Would recommend for anyone

hiking
1 day ago

Amazing! Beautiful hike with a great variety of scenery. Fairly tough incline throughout, but manageable if you pace yourself, and is worth it for the amazing views at the top.

We backpacked this loop counter clockwise for Labor day weekend in 2018, camping at the Twin Crater Lakes on the first night and Camp Lake on the second night.

Beautiful area -- lots of water, with many stream crossings that used logs or stones to get across w/o getting wet.

Because we went in September we saw almost no flies and zero mosquitos. There was plenty of water to filter to drink (creeks, lakes, ponds) but it wasn't marshy with a ton of mosquitos. We saw 5 moose, stunning views of meadows and mountain lakes, amazing stars at night.

The Twin Crater lakes were too high (about 11000 feet) and shallow for fish. We didn't see any fish at Camp Lake, but other backpackers said they caught many fish in the Raway Lakes.

The parking lot at the West Branch Trailhead was full Saturday at noon on Labor day weekend, but people can park along the wide dirt road next to the parking lot, so that was not an issue.

Climbed yesterday (9/16) and started at 05:49. Wasn’t sure of what to expect, since one of the reviews really bashed the mountain. There was a 20 deg F change in temperature and a wind that started in the last ~200 yards from the peak. The total hike took us 6 hours 1.5 minutes. One person in our party had to stop every 10 feet due to the altitude. Bring a hat, gloves and a warm jacket for the top, headlamp or flashlight for the start.
Pros: The views were great, Aspens were in full color, saw a fox right before we started and two mountain goats on the way down.
Cons: The scree field was long; coming down wreaked havoc on the knees.

Amazing trail hiked on 9/14/18. Arrive before 7 if you want to park at Glacier Gorge trailhead. Hike took us 6 hrs round trip but we took our time at the Loch, Timberline Falls, Lake of Glass, Sky Pond, and also detoured to Mills Lake on the return trip. Trail was long but otherwise not too difficult for a couple of moderately in shape amateur hikers. The waterfall scramble took all of a few minutes and so long as you watch your footing carefully on the wet rocks isn’t bad. Amazing scenery at every stop....tough to say which stop is the best which made for an extremely rewarding hike. Highly recommended.

Great day hike. Worth going up the small falls to eventually get to sky pond. Round trip somewhere between 4:30 to 5hrs.

Great day. Near empty lot at 5AM. Accompanied my wife on her first 14er to Grays. I continued on to T’s with a friend. Back in the condo with a drink by 1:00!! Beautiful hike.

Did this hike yesterday 9/16 and it was my fourth 14er. It was by far the hardest one I’ve done. We stared at 415 am and finished by noon. It took way longer than I thought it would, but it was the last part up to the summit that killed me with the steepness. I feel like the views were actually pretty awesome compared to what I’ve read on other reviews, especially since the aspens are changing and it’s beautiful. The rocks are pretty tough to walk and navigate on and I busted my butt probably 5 or 6 times on the way down, so take it slow. It was worth the challenge though! Also, it was very windy and cold at the summit so bring plenty of layers and gloves

Easiest Colorado 14er hike. Very crowded all the way to top. IF you want to avoid the crowd start early possibly 4 am. Donot underestimate though. it is still a 14er.

I loved this trail. I Had my kids with me and they thought it was great.

trail running
2 days ago

Great intro to Colorado 14ers. A fairly physical hike requiring some scrambling.

hiking
2 days ago

My wife and mine first 14er. Wow! What a hike and kicked our tail. Of course we are 60ish. Beautiful weather on 9-14. Around freezing when started out at 7am and sun was just started peeking out behind the mountain but warmed as day went on. Trail maintenance is excellent. Got a good spot in the parking lot but plenty of parking on the road.
Oxygen was our biggest obstacle.

I'm guessing the hard rating is based on the minor scrambling required to get to the upper lakes. Overall a great hike with 4 gorgeous lakes. Saw some people braving the cold water and had wished I packed some extra clothes to jump in as well. Even though there's a decent amount of traffic on the trail, it didn't feel overly crowded and everyone I encountered was friendly and courteous.

This was my first fourteener and definitely a decent challenge. Arrived at the trailhead at 5:30am and the parking lot was already full and the roadside was filling up. Tons of people and so crowded which is to be expected of any lower class fourteener. The lack of basic hiking courtesy and manners by most people really shocked me. My dog was amazing at scrambling and loved seeing all the marmots. Glad I hiked it, but honestly not sure if I'm going to be jumping on the fourteener train as I enjoy hiking to get away from people.

hiking
3 days ago

Beautiful views.

Did shorter 20.1 mile loop - in a 3 day/2 night trip.
- Day/Night 1: Parking -> West Branch -> Rawah -> Twin Crater Lakes (hiked up to but camped below lakes) ~6.6 miles
- Day/Night 2: Twin Crater Lakes -> Rawah -> Sandbar Lakes -> Camp Lake Trail (skip Upper Camp Lake Trail, sleep @ 2nd intersect of Camp Lake x Camp Lake Ditch Loop trails ~6.9 miles
- Day 3: Camp Lake -> West Branch -> Parking ~6.6 miles

Highlights!: Excellent clean (spring fed?) creeks at each camp site, even in Sept. West Branch -> Rawah Trail very pretty w/ aspen trees, everything from Twin Crater Lakes, Grassy Pass, to Rawah Lake 3 was superb eye candy, love the sweeping ridge views & alpine lakes. Heard wolves (?) and elk on Night 1 and saw a BIG moose on Night 2!!

Meh: Camp Lake Trail was very muddy & brushy near the lake, even in Sept - best to wear pants and waterproof shoes! Lots more standing dead pine on the Camp Lake side of the trail.

Crowds: Saw under a dozen people per day - day hikers, backpackers, some fishing and hunting. 2 other groups camping at Twin Crater Lakes, 1 at our 2nd camp.

Map Note: National Geographic's map for this area is missing Camp Lake Ditch Loop trail, I don't think those intersections are marked, and while it shows more creeks than All Trails, not all creeks on that map were running mid-Sept, so we were confused about where we were by the end of Day 2.

Moderate hike with a little bouldering. We took our time and wrapped up the hike, plus Mirror lake and Mills lake in 5 hours. I'm a novice hiker and really enjoyed this hike.

I really loved this hike until the waterfall scramble. I really had no idea what it would be like, and I'm afraid of heights, but more so coming down. I think it helped me that the trail was busy and I could watch some other hikers come down - otherwise I was ready to turn around! I'm glad that I went on - Lake of Glass and Sky Pond were beautiful (hold on to your hats, though, it was very windy!) Also, there was a marmot that was overly tame at Lake of Glass - when we were there he ran off with a plastic water bottle (not ours). Don't feed the wildlife!

Definitely need awd vehicle! For my first 14er, this hike was great! Did both grays and Torrey’s, started around 7:30 and was down by 2:30. Hiked closer to 11 miles including the hike from the car to the trailhead.

Beautiful hike! We really enjoyed the variety of this hike including waterfalls, mountain vistas, gorgeous lakes, and groves of aspens. The wind above the scramble was strong today, but it was definitely worth hiking all the way to Sky Pond. The gradual elevation change helped us warm up to take on the steeper sections that start before the scramble. Also, we liked the decent amount of shade along the way.

We took the shuttle from the Bear Lake Park and Ride, which worked well for us. There was a bit of a wait to leave in the morning, but I think we only waited 5 minutes to take it back to our car.

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