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Hiking Western Slope Map

Had a blast but more people have to pay attention to the leash law. I do and it annoys me that others don't.

Hiked this trail this past Friday morning with my kids, aged 11 and 14. Remember when these smokejumpers lost their lives on this mountain and think of that every time I drive through here and look up the mountain, which is still dotted with charred trees. Wanted to share this with my kids. Perfect fall day. Bright blue skies against the red of the mountains and the muted copper and gold of scrub oaks lining the trail.We were one of two cars in the lot. The other reviews are accurate— there is a fair amount of climbing, but the overall elevation gain is only 1830 feet and relative to 14er hikes, there is plenty of oxygen. That said, my son complained a lot until we reached the memorials. Amazing 360 views! And the interpretive signs along the way explain the logistics of that fateful day. As you descend into the gulch floor and back up to the high point, there are charred trees to remind you of the power of fire. My only complaint is that the memorial trees and the individual stone crosses are overwhelmed with mementos— some appropriate (fire axes, helmets, gloves) and some that are just clutter (empty liquor bottles?). The memorial trees are covered with t-shirts that have disintegrated over time, so this particular spot is quite haunting. Overall it is a great and somber hiking experience— and a nice way to pay respects to those people who came here from other states to fight fires in Colorado.

Hiked storm king today. Started at 8:30am a nice 49 crisp morning. Perfect. The trail is rated extremely difficult. I hike every week and I would absolutely rate this the same. The trail has a short cut way up and down once you go up the stairs to the other side of Canyon stay to the right. The trail looks like it goes of to left. It does if you want to add distance to your hike. Which we did. Only because the short cut trail was very over grown sage brush. The trail was covered in fall leaves so we didn’t know it was a trail. We were ok with going the extra distance. But coming down we found the coming down from the memorial sight if you see the post with #3 that’s your short cut down just past it. Marked only with ribbons tied to the sage brush. Very heart breaking to see the crosses. Very breathtaking to see the view. I would do this trail again.

Absolutely incredible. Very challenging. The history behind it makes this trail that much better. Thank you to all our firefighters!

1 month ago

Grizzly Creek is a great hike! Peaceful with the sounds of water and beautiful scenery! We didn’t walk the whole thing so I can’t say how it ends but the first 1-2 miles in was pretty easy. Not too crowded either.

1 month ago

Great trail! We loved the constant sound of the creek and the high canyon walls either side. The climb is broken up by numerous short stretches of flat (or almost flat) which often allow you to catch your breath a bit without stopping. Highly recommended and easy to access.

Awesome little hike. Amazing terrain and views.

I only hiked to the observation point. I’m writing this review in Sept but I hiked this trail in the July heat. Not a smart move. By the time I got up to the observation point, two liters of water were gone. I had two dogs with me that weren’t going to be able to make the rest of the hike without water. So, after we reached Observation Point we turned back. I’d like to return on a cooler day and finish out the hike. It’s a very sobering journey up. Firefighters are heroes and this fire was a big one that took many lives. I look forward to returning and completing the historical trail. Steep as can be on the way up, but a really good work out. Bring water, snacks, and tissue for wiping your tears away.

Very pretty hike. Knowing the history of the area makes the experience much more meaningful.

2 months ago

First Colorado hiking trail, excellent choice. Steady incline with beautiful bubbling creek sounds alongside trail. Lots of large stone & creek photo ops. Plenty of shaded & sunny sections.

2 months ago

Awesome trail. Rated moderate but still a good steady climb. Great scenes, lots of running water. At about 7,000, my wife and I took a quick break a few feet apart from one another...I was up trail when I heard a rustling in the brush on the upslope side and then thumping on the trail - turned to my right and saw a black bear cub, golden brown with a darker brown ruff around his neck...we saw each other at the same moment. The "little" critter did an about face and retraced his steps back from where he/she came...there were ar least two more, probably mom and a sibling judging from the sounds we heard. My wife never saw the bear - the whole incident occurred over maybe 3-4 seconds... We made some noise, carried on up trail without further incident. My only regret is not getting a once in a lifetime photo op...
This occurred last Monday, September 10. Lots of berries along the trail. Overall I'd rate this hiking trail a 10.

2 months ago

Couple of practical points. Access TH by parking car In Tiehack Express Gondola on RIGHT hand side of road. From there walk 200m up the road. The start on right of road has none of usual markings other than the words GOVT TR on a post forming end of a wooden fence. Easy to miss. The trail opens out onto a meadow. There are no trail markings here at all. When you come out on meadow keep left until get to back of a blue sign (EAGLE HILL).Keep right here up unmarked trail not on d
vehicle track. Same at the end of this very short section, keep right on unmarked trail. From then on trail is self evident.
Great walk not too strenuous with some great views. Don let the sign at the start of the back country put you off. red notice with deaths head skull warning of danger to life. It may be a possibility but not a certainty as the sign implies.
Main danger is from wildlife (on two wheels). Why do these bikers always give the impression they are on mission either to set a PB or qualify for the olympics. Nothing must stand in their way so stand aside. None of the normal courtesies apply like, let's make passing each other a joint enterprise.
don't let that spoil what is overall a great hike at least for the first 3 hours before I headed back.

nice and easy hike along the river with easy access

2 months ago

A nice hike with pleasant views the whole time. The last 1/3rd or so is substantially steeper than the beginning, and people with a little juice still left in them have the option of continuing across the creek and climbing a bit up the valley. There and back took me about 4.5 hours at a brisk pace with a quick exploration of the other side of the creek.

Loved Hanging Lake trail! It’s definitely steep, especially in the beginning. And, the trail was very crowded. That aside, it was super beautiful and worth the pumping heart rate! The lake is fantastic, as was spouting rock. Get there early so as to have a spot to park, and avoid the rush!

The first coupe of miles are pretty easy and has lots of river stop opportunities for your pup along the way. After mile 2 more significant elevation gains are made. The trail is well maintained and the views are beautiful. I had my dog on a leash like requested but no-one else did, so be prepared for that.

it is a great trail, beautiful scenery... we loved it...

Just finished this challenging hike

amazing view. I'd love it :)

3 months ago

We did two miles in and two back after finding ourselves with some extra time. Nice hike, not too challenging. In the sun a lot, so starting earlier is better. Views of the ridges above you are very impressive. Otherwise nice but not spectacular. Not crowded.

This trail is rather difficult, I got to the end in about and hour and a half and in total stayed for about 3 hours. It is very touching to see all the memorials for the firefighters that tragically lost their lives.

I recommend doing this hike very early in the morning. I started at about 4:30 am, this way you avoid all the heat during the day.

overall a great hike.

Difficult, steep. Great historical significance

this was my first hike here in colorado and it was an amazing hike the view was great only downfall is i didnt get to climb it all the way up

3 months ago

Beautiful and not crowded!!

Only completed a couple of miles of this trail completely unplanned as we were on our way through Colorado to get to Utah, but I would definitely make an effort to get back there one day so I can make it further on seeing this trail. Between the pine-rowed canyon cliffs, the sights and sounds of the streams, and the mix of sunshine and shade, I felt that this trail in summertime embodies about everything I have always loved about Colorado. Seemed very family friendly also.

awesome single track

Hiked this trail on a whim. Fairly easy going, but same view of creek for most of the hike. Not incredibly busy, but still a lot of people on the trail. Not a bad way to spend the morning.

Nice easy trail. Saw a bull moose about 2 miles in!!! Steep ravine and creek separated us, when we crossed the creek to his side we turned back. Respect the power of the moose!

Mark S. (Post before mine) took the words out of my mouth. We also did it counter clockwise (up pioneer and down long gulch), and would recommend doing it the other way, especially if you have a bum knee like me. I’m still very very glad we did the full loop instead of just the out and back on pioneer like we had planned tho, but coming down in some spots on long gulch were kind of intimidating with all the loose/sliding rocks and how steep it was, and it would have been slightly easier to climb up instead.

My Fitbit tracked right at 10 miles, and it ended up taking 5 hours- a good bit longer than we had allotted/expected. (But honestly a solid 30 mins of that was solely because I kept having to take a second pause to take pictures haha)

I just moved from Alaska (land of beautiful scenery), and the 360 views and changes in scenery absolutely blew my mind! I definitely would recommend it, you won’t be disappointed!!!!!

4 months ago

We chose the counter-clockwise direction. Steep ascent the first four miles through woods and open fields. When out of the forest there were great views. Briefly inspected the smelly cabin, abuzz with flies. The descent was long and varied from challenging (scree or loose dirt) to gradual along a rocky path. It ended up being 9.1 miles based on the AllTrails app and, alternatively, 11.1 miles based on phone GPS. Not sure why such a discrepancy.

The great: incredible views; tons of wildflowers; very varied scenery and surroundings; constantly changing; great workout; very quiet. (All that was missing was a lake.) Just a stunning trail.

The good: some trail marking (but don’t try without map or app)

The not so great or good: ranger station claimed descent (in counter-clockwise) direction was gradual. There were definitely a few challenging portions. Which direction is better to hike is a subject I am sure hikers could argue for days. FLIES, FLIES, FLIES. Big, aggressive ones that bite. Bring tons of bug repellent, sunscreen (lots of unshaded sections), and lots of water. Took us much longer than we anticipated.

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