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Waterfall and creek was dry.

Amazing hike today to Lake Isabelle. All the recommendations and suggestions with regards to parking were very helpful from the past comments. We departed Denver at 530am arrived 715am. Obtained one of the last parking spaces. An easy trail with amazing views at every turn. As we arrived at location 7 moose were along side of road. This started our day on a fine note indeed!

hiking
10 hours ago

The Long Lake TH was full so parked in a small lot off the road on west side of Brainard Lake before the TH turnoff. Up the road or on the trail are both easy routes and quick to Long Lake itself. Open well-maintained trail. Wild flowers all over the place this time of year. Very little elevation and it was all mild. Great stream crossings.

I did this trail to warm up for the Dead and Company shows in Boulder the following weekend. This trail had everything, low traffic (in the morning), a challenging climb, loads of flowers, and spectacular peaks towering over you. I climbed up the south ridge of the Crater Lake saddle to get up to a beautiful view of the next valley and then climbed on up to the continental divide. Hike exceeded my high expectations of hike in the Rockies.

Get there early! Parking lot will fill up around 8AM. Got there around 9AM a few weeks ago and we waited in line at the pay station for over an hour. Worth the wait if you have the time!

Bring sunscreen and plenty of water. Pretty crowded tail. If you don’t want to add time to the hike try to park at Long Lake. I

Very easy did this hike mid-July. We stayed at the campground the night before which was nice. Free sites were also along the road. Vault toilets at the trailhead. Nicely shaded trail. We just wish there was a better spot near the lake for our dog to jump in and cool off. This parking lot was PACKED by noon so plan accordingly.

Enjoyed the hike. The wildflowers are out in full force. Not to be outdone by the flowers, at the first lake 3 good sized fish decided to feed right where we were standing and one was courteous enough to stop and pose for the camera (see pic)! And, so the fish and flowers weren't to get all the glory while walking back a Weidemeyer's Admiral butterfly landed on the trail and showed off for the camera as well (pic posted too). There were quite a few people on the trail and even at the uppermost lake - so bummer for that. But we had the third lake all to ourselves. We had never hiked up the rock path before - previously traveling up the path that follows more along the major waterflow between the 2nd and 3rd lakes. We decided will stick with our original path - much!!!! prettier!!!!!!

We stayed at the lower 2 Crater Lakes and oh my goodness it was busy! The lower lakes are ~4mi and 1500’ gain according to my GPS. We hiked to the upper lakes the next morning, another 700’ gain and 0.7miles. We had our full packs so it was a workout. The hiking poles for the descent were a must. There was quite a bit of talus to navigate.

Crater lakes is beautiful, the wildflowers are at peak right now. The campsite was nice, I was just in awe of how crowded it was (yes on a July weekend, should I be so surprised?!) All campers were respectful and tried to minimize impact. Everyone was using bear canisters or bear bags but with as many people and dogs were there that night, I didn’t think a bear would be wandering through.

hiking
1 day ago

Lovely hike with great payoff. I have hiked this 3 times and done the 11-mile snowshoe to it when the access road was closed. Regarding the post for the hike on 6/29/18, you ***CAN*** use your RMNP annual pass, but you need to tell the people manning he Brainard Lake entry station that it is an "Access Pass" or "Interagency Pass". Any of the Federal annual or lifetime passes will work at Brainard. You just need to classify them as stated above because many of the people manning the entry booths only understand the passes when they are classified as above. I know this from experience and also received this exact info directly from the Boulder Ranger District.

easy trail, pretty lake and tons O' bugs. Keep on going to Blue lake.

The initial part of the joint trail that serves a number of hikes is gentle although the quality of the trail can hit the feet in places!
The turn to the Crater lakes begins the fun/hurt, the gradient at times was a challenge for a 66 years young person who lives at sea level but for the young and locals the trip to the first lakes is moderate. Then you look up and see people trying to climb what seems like a vertical trail to the lakes beyond. That climb also includes scrambling over two areas of boulders, again easier for the younger hikers - overall a good trip especially if you manage the final climb - a great sense of achievement.

Great hike! Bring your National Parks Pass and no need to pay the $11 fee. A ton of mosquitos once you get to the lake, so bring bug spray.

Great 4th if July hike. Fairly easy and well maintained.

incredible views and easy hike! wish it was less crowded with tourists but the rangers manage the area and parking well!

It was so beautiful my eyes could barely stand it. Definitely do the final lake. It takes a scramble but it’s more like a playground of rocks.

hiking
3 days ago

Easy distance on a good trail to so much beauty, but you won’t be alone. Lot full by 815 today. Parking at Mitchell adds 2 mi RT

One of my favorite local hikes! Nice because unlike some trails in Roosevelt National Forest there is an actual parking lot with ample parking. Even on the fourth of July we found parking without difficulty. It is heavily trafficked but everyone was polite and friendly and followed good trail etiuqette. If you don't do the final scramble I think this clocks in more like a moderate, personally.

backpacking
6 days ago

Road was fine for my 2door hatchback with standard clearance. sporadic potholes but they are easy to straddle.
A sweet little hike. I wouldn't suggest it for backpacking because it's very short (my GPS says less than 2miles) and there aren't many places to go off trail to camp without messing up a restoration area or camping g in the middle of an animal trail. I use a bivy sac and it was still difficult to find a good spot.
SO many mosquitos-- bring bug spray for real.
If you're looking for a fun spot to mess around in small lakes and not have to hike too far from camp this is perfect. Pretty pines and aspens and a few glimpses of a pretty mountain but no wide vistas. It's a very easy hike if you're looking for a short nature woodsy walk without building up too much of a sweat this is a good trail for you.
There's access to Arapahoe Glacier Trail from this Trailhead and if I'd had time I would've turned around and done that instead. That is probably an amazing hike to a wide vista very close by and if you'll be at the campground a while you could goall the way to Arapahoe Pass and Lake Dorothy in a day if you left early.

This was such an incredible hike. Amazing views and a difficult trail that wasn’t too long. The hike to the upper lake is really hard, scrambly in places, but worthwhile. Not a lot of people went up that far and it was a great place to recharge before descending.

I wanted to add that at 6:30am on a Monday, the parking lot was only 1/3 full. When I got back around 9, it was completely full.

Beautiful and easy! I could have spent hours sitting at the lake if I had heeded the advice to wear insect repellent! Lots of mosquitos, especially as you get close to the water. Other than that, spectacular. Very easy hiking until right towards the end - it gets steeper as you're walking alongside the waterfall just before Lake Isabelle. Still not bad, though. I did not stop for a picnic - only short photo stops for me and sniffing and swimming stops for my dog. Walked a moderate pace. It took us 2 hours and 15 minutes in total. Wildlife sightings: deer, marmot, duck w/ ducklings

This hike was easy and beautiful! I could’ve spent hours just sitting at Lake Isabelle. Even the bathrooms were clean! The hike starts at 10,000ft so you’re up there. Even though it’s an easy hike without much of an incline, I was still breathing heavy at times due to elevation...so keep drinking water.

Incredible hike! The view at the top is absolutely stunning, we spent an hour staring in awe at the beauty. We took our 2 dogs with us and they had a great time hiking as well. 100% recommend!

Very nice pretty much the trail is shady and it’s just beautiful

My husband and I hiked Pawnee Pass on 7/7/18. He thinks he left his camera sd card up there. He left it on the flat area up there before the final climb to the top. He left it on a flat rock in the middle of that area. God willing one of you finds it, we will pay a 300.00 reward once we confirm it is ours. Please email me at kbrewer@lps.k12.co.us.

I have gone twice, easy hike. Short time to get there, but so beautiful!

This is an AMAZING trail! Today was my first time hiking it and I was so happy! The weather was sunny, with rain coming after noon, off and on. Trail is mostly shaded. The views, mountains and lakes, waterfalls, flowers were all great. The trail was good length. I would maybe suggest that the level is more easy to moderate, I saw some people struggling with altitude and incline. PARKING MIGHT BE AN ISSUE! Please plan accordingly... rangers told us lot was full at 6 am, we were there at 8:20. Had to wait about 20 minutes to get in and park ($11 CASH). We were shown where to park, not offered options. I ended up logging 8 miles today instead of planned 4.5-5. I heard a few people say they saw moose around Long Lake, but I did not. My husband fly fished at Brainard (lots of little fish caught and released), had better luck on St. Vrain, just below Brainard (several bigger caught and released). Super fun day, we will be back!!! (maybe not on a Saturday, though!)

on Lake Isabelle Trail

9 days ago

My favorite trail since I have moved to Denver. A must do! Long but easy... inclines aren't steep for long. Beautiful views, quiet, dog friendly, child friendly and snow in the summer. Make sure to take pack layers. *PLEASE Keep dogs on a leash, you might know your dog but you don't know someone elses.

Beautiful trail! Excellent views and a great beginners hike.

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