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14 hours ago

Tough but worth it

on Butler Gulch Trail

15 hours ago

Perfect strenuous hike not far from Denver. The last half mile is deceivingly steep but very doable and worth it. Just hard enough to make you break a sweat and need a breather but not so much that you want to stop. Being above the tree line for the last half mile gives you great views of the surrounding ranges. Gorgeous hike. Highly recommend for a good sweat! In and out with a stop at the top for snacks in 3 hours.

The road to the trailhead is definitely crazy - our 4x4 Pathfinder took it like a champ! But, you definitely need a 4x4 vehicle to get through.
We pulled into the lot at 5am on Wednesday and there were only a few cars at the top parking lot.

This was my first 14er and it was the hardest hike I’ve ever done in my life! Definitely worth it! We had our 7 year old with us... and it was pretty difficult for him. We all summited Grays and enjoyed the breathtaking views. We didn’t summit Torrey’s. One was enough for us.
We took a lot of breaks with our son - it took us about 6/7 hours to reach the summit. We made it back down to the parking lot in about 2 hours.

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
1 day 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????????

What an amazing hike! It’s a tough one for sure. The road is definitely scary, but we took it pretty slow. My Jeep Patriot did great. Got to the TH at 530am on a Wednesday morning still spots in the parking lot, not too busy on the trail, was perfect. Took 8 hours with a lot of breaks. Did Grays and Torreys, worth every second!

scenic driving
1 day ago

I will never get tired of this drive. I do get tired of the growing crowds though. A small inconvenience to deal with while enjoying the Colorado Gold. Heads-up. Lets practice good road and trail etiquette here, especially during leaf peeping. Many thanks from a CO native.

Beautiful not to difficult to hike up to the waterfall drive up on a 2015 Jeep Wrangler made it up fine

hiking
1 day ago

This is a difficult hike, but very rewarding once you get to the top. The views are worth it! There were some wildflowers when I went, but I think I missed the peak time for flowers this year.

The trail starts out a bit steep, levels out a bit, and then returns to a decent climb to get to the top. My husband and I hiked this trail, to the waterfall, with our two kids, 7 and 10 year old. It was about 3 mi., round trip, with a 1000 ft. elevation gain (The cirque is a bit further with another 500 ft. elevation gain). The wildflowers were past their peak but there were still plenty to enjoy.

This is our third time doing this Centennial Wildflower Hike and I would have to say that we better enjoy it earlier in the season when water crossing are more plentiful and the colors are off the wall. Today's hike was dryer, still beautiful, and hot. Go in July.

I have to say, there were quite a few people on the trail. This was the busiest I have ever seen it. BIG clap of appreciation goes out to all of the folks picking-up after their dogs. There were some bags of dog poop along the trail going up. When I came back down, they were gone! That's not to say that there weren't several piles left all around the trailhead, but it sure was nice to see responsible dog owner's making a difference in the way our trails are being used and abused by cleaning up after their pets. Thanks!

I arrived on a Monday evening around 6:30pm - there were 2 other cars by the trailhead, by 10pm the parking lot was about half full and when I headed out at 6:30am the next morning the lot only had a few spots left but there was still another 8-10 spots on the side of the road by the beginning of the trail. There are a few sporadically positioned camping spots by the trailhead with firepits - I counted 5 but there may be more. I highly recommend arriving the night before and sleeping in your car or camping as it takes the stress out of wondering whether there will be a place to park once you finally get up the dirt road. Plus you get to see some amazing stars and get to start your climb at whatever time you choose.

The road is as described by many others - rough. I have a 4x4 Jeep and found it tricky in places and slow going 5-10mph for most of the ride to avoid damaging my vehicle. I did see a Prius and several low clearance 2 wheels up at the trailhead which I would not advise unless you're in a rental or just don't care about wrecking your car (or inconveniencing others if you get stuck).

The hike is fun but challenging. I'm in my early 40s - active, above average fitness and live in Denver so not coming directly from sea-level and found it tough above 13k. There's a lot of rock and scree. The views are worth it. I did Torey's first by veering right where the trail splits and then Gray's - which seemed to be against most of the traffic so I'm glad I did. Overall it was busy (especially for a Tuesday morning) but not to the point where that affected the pace of my climb or my enjoyment of it - just plenty of people to say hello to.

Time wise I got up to the top of Torey's in 2-1/2 hours, it then takes about 45 mins to go down, traverse and summit Gray's. I took my time at the top of Gray's and came down fairly casually. I was back down at my vehicle in 5 hours 40 mins (8.6 miles, 3,107ft of elevation gain).

The weather was great - clear all morning. It was chilly at the top of Torey's so I was glad for a nano-puff and pair of lightweight gloves.

It's a fun, challenging hike - that will take your breath away in more ways than one.

Loved this hike! Beautiful as the trail ascends through the forest. Two steep parts, one about1-2 miles in and the ascent to the lake. A small and bigger waterfall and a few stream crossings, love the water! I have two dogs and needed water in addition to my 3 liter camelback. The lake is beautiful and quiet. My dogs loved it too!

hiking
2 days ago

Great day not a cloud in sight. Smoke from the California wild fires was very prevalent. First time this hiking season that I wore a short sleeve t-shirt over 12,000’ even the slight breeze felt refreshing because it was a hot day.
Ran into 40 people who were doing memorial hike for Peter McInerney

The road was in good shape and it’s a very good workout.

Views were mostly blocked by the smoke.

Wonderful trail! Always busy, get there early..

READ BEFORE GOING! Not the typical walk in the park hike you often hear about for Grey's and torry's. from Montezuma start, it's much more difficult but much less crowded. All trails line is accurate on the accent, not for the decent/loop. If you do this route, best to summit the 14ers and make your way back the same way you came (down directly from the Grey's peak). If you follow all trails line, it turns to class 3 scramble going down a different side of Grey's and is an on and off rockslide. Glad we did this hike, will not be doing it again.

hiking
2 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.

I gave it four stars instead of five because I didn’t see many flowers. I’m relatively new to hiking and would say it was a moderate hike with a steady climb but not too steep. Our dog loved the little streams and the lake. Very open - no shade so it was warm at times.

My dad and I set out for an ‘easier 14er.’ Headed out around 6:45am and got back to the car around 12:45. We started at Summit Lake and did Spalding to Evans, and then back down Evans and Spalding again (so basically out and back). The hardest part we thought was the return over Spalding after already having climbed across some tricky rocky scrambling to Evans. Did see goats which was the highlight for me, and the view on top of Evans was really beautiful. Would recommend maybe going down the road after summitting Evans to make the trip a little more pleasant.

This class 2 is a crazy tough hike, but soooo rewarding. Lots of ups and downs. A 700 foot ascent in the final third of a mile took us close to 40 minutes. Poles come in handy on the descent.

Grays and Torreys loom large, but look for Mt of the Holy Cross, Quandary, Democrat, Cameron, Bross and other 14ers.

You may save some time by turning right about two-thirds of the way up from the trailhead. A cairn marks the spot that takes you towards Cupid.

off road driving
3 days ago

Supper fun don’t go up without an 3+ inch lift and 33s unless you look for mild damage

To reiterate others' comments, the road is an absolute mess -- without a SUV, pickup, or Jeep, there's no way you'll be able to drive to the upper (summer) trailhead. We managed to get about half a mile in a Honda Civic before parking on the shoulder and walking the rest of the way (~2.5 miles). By 7:00 AM on a Sunday, the parking lot was completely full. Don't expect much solitude, especially on the weekend - at least a few hundred people summitted the same day we did.

All that said, the hike itself was a lot of fun, though certainly difficult even after a few days of acclimation at RMNP. I'd recommend doing Grays first, going down the saddle, and then heading up to Torreys. Grays is all steep switchbacks; from the saddle, Torreys is a short but very steep climb. We thought the views were slightly better from Grays. Despite being rained on, hailed on, and briefly snowed on (yes, in August), the trails themselves weren't difficult to follow. Definitely a good experience for our first 14ers!

My family did this hike we had someone from sea level and they were able to do it I would recommend this hike for younger kids and a first hike. At some parts were not well marked over all we thought it was pretty good

Gorgeous views and a vigorous uphill climb. Traffic thins out at the first “summit,” which you’ll recognize by the little rock “shelters” visitors have built to protect from the wind. However, don’t stop there – the mountain keeps going! Shortly after the false summit, there’s a beautiful lake tucked away between the mountains. Bring a lift coat and gloves to protect yourself from the wind because it’s relentless. Views at the top are beautiful. We saw plenty of pika, marmots, and a woodchuck at the summit.

Overall, it’s a challenging and quick hike. Highly recommended. We arrived around 8:30 am on a Sunday and it wasn’t too crowded. Took about 3 hours round trip with several breaks on the way up.

First, the road: NEVER AGAIN! What an awful beast of a road. I think I have PTSD from driving those 3 miles from hell. (And yes, I was in a high-clearance 4x4 truck.)

Next, the trail: Just wonderful all around. Mostly moderate in difficulty but hard in some places. The trail up to Torreys is steep and a lung-buster. Hiking poles highly recommended for the descent.

Great views and a well maintained trail. We drive our Outback up to the trailhead parking lot no problem. Few spots where good driving was needed due to drainage ditches. Wouldn't want to take anything with lower clearance than an outback though. Started hiking at 0830 and saw only a handful of hikers. By the time we were done, the lot was full and the trail was quite a bit more populated. Totally worth the hike though!

hiking
3 days ago

Delightful moderate hike above the treeline. Outstanding vistas. Last cairn is a throne!

I give this hike 3 stars in the summer and 5 stars in the winter. It's a great location, just over an hour from Denver and you get to go through Georgetown and past Idaho Springs which both have fun food/drinking options for post-hike. For summer, the hike is easy/moderate and isn't terribly exciting - ranging from 4 or 6 mi round trip depending on if you're able to take the AWD road or not. People mention wildflowers, but compared to most other hikes in CO, there were next to none. This is a lovely quick hike if you just want to get outside and move for a bit, but isn't particularly photogenic if that's what you're looking for. However, in winter it's spectacular for snowshoeing. We came on a Saturday in April and didn't see another soul til we got to the car. It's more strenuous on snowshoes, so that makes it a little more entertaining. The trees are beautiful in winter and you can't beat walking on a frozen lake.

hiking
3 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!

This hike packs a lot in 4 miles, forest, meadow, great views throughout and three beautiful alpine lakes. Of course this also make it very popular. While there is not a lot of elevation gain it is over a fairly short distance so the trail is steep and rocky in a few spots. The last push to the top lake is short and up. Keep in mind you will be above tree line most of the hike so be prepared for whatever weather. This is a great hike for those who want a lot of beauty without a lot of mileage.

Wildflowers, snow pack, Alpine lakes! Awesome hike! It is a very busy trail that at times is hard to pass other hikers so come with patience. The road to the upper lot is very rough. AWD for sure with good clearance, but there was a Mercury Milan in the upper lot so maybe a regular car could make it carefully. Bring bug spray and sunscreen!

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