Explore JBL Trip 6/2/17 - 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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Great day out. 5° at trailhead but layers proved essential. Little to no wind. Trailhead parking only had one available spot when we arrived a little after 9am. Wore microspikes for first 1/2 to 2/3 of route. Changed to snowshoes shortly after getting off the Brothers ridge. Some tricky and steep spots getting up to the Brothers. Traction of some sort is definitely needed in my opinion. Final route up to summit is STEEP. Make sure your snowshoes are made for steep hiking - mine weren’t and I kept sliding with every step. We had the summit to ourselves for a short time. Some spots required downclimbing facing in on the way down. Switched back to microspikes before descending the Brothers. Took 6:51hrs round trip at a medium pace with plenty of stops for photos, rests, snacks, etc. Trail is packed is most places. Little to no ice on trail.

incredible hike with breathtaking views.
We were lucky enough to choose to hike Giant Mountain on a mild winter day.
Crampons are a must for this trail as the trails are steep and icy.

Went up the Brothers to Big Slide yesterday 1/4. Nice day. Great views. Most everyone had spikes of a sort which I thought were essential. Steep climbing up the Brothers and a couple tricky spots. Steeper yet last 3/10ths up to Slide summit. Good packed snow and not a great amount of ice. A number of areas past the Brothers where care is needed to not break through some thin ice into running water.

Did this out & back 12/31/18. Overall a great hike with some awesome views and not too strenuous. Started at 8AM with microspikes from the Garden lot. It begins fairly easy until you begin to ascend the first brother. Nice views up that. There’s not too much up and down between the Brothers which was a nice break. Summited at 12:30 with many rest breaks and later changes. Back to the car by 3PM. Micro spikes were a necessity. Brought snowshoes but didn’t use them as there was no need. That’s # 13!

Had a great time going up to Summit. Spikes up and down. Took almost three hours to reach summit. Only the first half hour was easy. The three thousand feet up and one thousand climb per mile in winter is moderate to difficult depending on your fitness level. Did this December 18th 2018

WoW What a day ! We were hoping to get a 360 view at the top of Gothic but unfortunately it was not meant to be. Left the parking at 08:40 ( should have left at 08:00). It took us 9hrs to do the loop via Pyramid. Last half hour we needed our headlamps but this was not a problem as we were on the road part. Winter conditions all the way. Crampons and snowshoes were a must. Beautiful winter sceneries. Much snow at the tops of Pyramid and Gothic. It was a difficult to find the trail going down from Gothic. There was a set of snowshoes tracks which we followed thank goodness . In the steepest parts down it was safer to slide down sitting . Overall a very strenuous day . Looking forward to repeating this hike in the fall .

hiking
1 month ago

Hiked this 11/10. Went counter clockwise. Broke trail trough 4” and then 12” getting closer to the ridge. It was difficult in a snow storm. The nice thing about this trail is that if the weather gets too bad, you can always take a trail breaking east to the river and come back another day.

J’ai fait le Giant le 11 novembre. Déjà bien enneigé et glacé, le sentier demeure ardu et peu balisé. Les crampons sont requis. Les conditions météo étaient idéales. J’ai pris 2.5 heures pour la montée et 1.5 heure pour la descente, le tout sur un bon rythme. Sous réserve de courir, il est difficile de faire plus rapidement. Le temps était magnifique et la vue au sommet est extraordinaire. À refaire...

Did this as part of a loop with Armstrong and coming down Beaver Meadow trail. Took me 9.75 hours, including short stops. Toughest part was coming up UWJ, LWJ is not difficult. Crampons needed above 3600'. Only 1/2'' of snow.

Very muddy trail. Was expecting ice but there wasn’t any this time around. Well marked trail up and down. There is a lot of rock scramble which was interesting coming down haha. Incredible views all the way up. The Brothers offer a good challenge on the way up to Big Slide. Overall an awesome and challenging hike. Took about 7 hrs with lots of short stops.

We took this trail October 12 the weather was cloudy and rainy but the views from rocky ridge unparalleled. I would consider this moderate at best not as difficult as others said.

I really enjoyed this hike, lot of ice (Nov 4th), should havé worn better shoes with spikes

My brother ( age 50) and I ( age 52) hiked this yesterday November 4th and a lot of it was covered in ice and mud and snow . It was my first time hiking Giant and my 3rd high peak and most challenging yet . We were warm enough but should have worn some kind of chains on the hiking shoes . We each fell on our butt once but just enough to hurt our egos and laugh at each other . Hike time a little less than 7 hours ( including about 1/2 at the summit ) the trail is not marked very well and we took a few unplanned detours . I would do this hike again in the warmer months .

Fantastic 9 hour trek in November. Bring crampons - icy on top.

Hiked this today, to Fish Hawk Cliffs and it was as stated in previous reviews. Super easy until the side trail to the cliffs. In the summer, drier months is would probably be easy/moderate, but with all the water and mud it made the hike a bit longer since I had to take my time. Regardless, it's worth it ten fold. I drove in from Cleveland specifically for the hike and was not let down by any stretch of the imagination. No need for poles, just take your time in the slop. Will be back many more times.

backpacking
2 months ago

Very scenic and easy hike

awesome hike and not even the easiest in October (25.10) but I did it in 5 1/2 hours.
In the beginning very beautiful view. later just snow in the air and ice on the ground.

Awesome hike . It was quite wet and muddy , fairly challenging in mid October . We hiked for about 8 hours

The longest ever hike! Loved it! Not sure I’ll do it again!

backpacking
2 months ago

Pretty forest trail. We hiked it out to our campsite near Johns Brook Lodge and returned two days later. Well maintained and marked.

Low effort walk in the park (literally - the first few miles are such a gradual incline and the surroundings are beautiful) that have an awesome payout in the lookout. It’s an easy hike or a good recovery hike if you’re just wanting to be outside on a nice day!

Absolutely ridiculous. I was denied at the tail head by the most rude man I have ever encountered. I was with my service dog and he claimed absolutely no dogs on trail. He has no sympathy or understanding of how a service dog worked. They do not comply with state and federal laws concerning service dogs. I would recommend no one ever attempt this hike within this Nazi “reserve”.

Challenging climb with amazing views. We went up and back the 7.9 miles. Ice and snow made the climb up more challenging and going down the brothers was fun! Took us about 5 and a half hours round trip

This was a beautiful hike all around!Not too technical, just steep climbs and rock scrambles towards the summit. Started the hike at JBL and almost reached the summit but had to turn around 200 yd from the top due to impassable sheets of ice. We took Phelps trail down to descend, and I found a red mossy rock near a waterfall to where I proposed to my fiance. (she said yes!) The only reason I took one star away was because Phelps trail needs better blazes in the areas that need it most and less in the more obvious spots. Highly recommended hike!!

We did this trial backwards. We went over a bridge from the gravel road to take us to the Beaver Meadow falls but before we reached that we hit a small cascade and walked over a gushing river. We continued down the Lower Lake Trail (believe that's what it's called).This was the trail that had the yellow markers and then decided to do the Lost Lookout trail (red markers) and then at some point it turned blue. This was a steep incline! We basically did a loop and ended up back at the Beaver Meadow falls. We basically had to the Lower Lake trail again (HAHA). By the time we reached the dam, we were pooped but nonetheless, hiked up to Indian Head. Please beware that it was muddy due to rain, WEAR BOOTS. No sneakers please. The leaves create a slippery situation, especially damp ones and oh MUD. After Indian head we did the walk in the park gravel road back which was much needed after our backwards start and detour. Either way, this is a beautiful trail and hike! Highly recommended however NOT BACKWARDS!

4.5 hours down and back. The walk from the parking lot to the trail alone takes about 35-40 minutes. Pace yourself at the beginning of the hike until you surpass the waterfalls and streams to your left on the way up. The hike gets vigorous but is very well marked. The scenic route is not much different than the easy route so don’t be afraid to go on the daring side to be closer to the water. The entire hike is filled with beautiful foliage and there is not a singular sight on the way up worth missing. Heading toward the top near the overlook, ensure you stop on the large rock ahead to take some pictures above the trees the views are much different from below. As you approach the overlook the payoff of the entire hike fills you with this sensation of joy. The view spectacular, absolutely awe inspiring and worthy of the 11.1 mile trip. 5 out of 5, will do again.

Me and my girlfriend enjoyed this hike yesterday. We lucked out with a beautiful day, lending us unhindered 360 degree views of the park. Great view of the great range. Steep in some spots but manageable (girlfriend is 5 months pregnant and didn’t have any issues). Short hike with a big pay off.

NOTE: This is Hard, NOT moderate, and this route to the peak is more like 8 miles, not 6 miles. Also, don't bring your dog, unless they're very adept at hiking with you. Once you get past mile 2, the rocky bits get increasingly harder to scale and the opportunities for a fall increase dramatically. We saw at least one poor dog too terrified to climb down while the owner yelled at him to jump, and none of the many dogs we saw coming down looked happy at all.

If you try a day hike like we did, you'll want to be back to within one mile of the trailhead by dark. It was ok with headlamps, but you definitely don't want to be scrounging around near any of the false peaks after dark. Also highly recommend at least one pole for the climb down or you'll have some sore knees pretty quickly.

Challenging, gorgeous and populated with legit and polite hikers. Don't underestimate this hike, especially in the fall with wet leaves, mud and high winds when you reach the various false peaks.

Hiked this on Saturday October 13, at the trailhead at 0730. Started out on Lake Road, Rainbow Falls, Indian Head, Fish hawk Cliffs and Gil Brook.

The trail was not crowded until we turned to go back via Gill Brook.

The overlook at Indian Head is amazing, colors were just past peak. Fish hawks cliffs was not crowded and somehow we had Rainbow Falls all to ourselves.

Excellent hike, this was my second time in the last 30 days. Can't say enough good about it. Not difficult - except, the night before there were heavy rains and the trail was covered in fresh leaves, since we were early there was a few spots by Fish Hawk Cliffs that we were unsure which way the trail went. Other than that - such a fun hike and awesome colors and waterfalls for miles.

Gotta say, nothing beats a view like this!

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