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hiking
2 hours ago

One word: SPECTACULAR!!!

Attempted this hike 2 times before in January and February but failed due to not having snowshoes and hiking through extremely dangerous winds, but finally finished the entire hike to Sky Pond on 4/15 with the proper equipment. The trail from Glacier Gorge should be 9.8 miles RT (rather than 8.1 miles according to this site) since it’s 2.2 miles to the split point between Loch Vale and Mills Lake, and then another 2.7 miles to Sky Pond from the split point.

By far my favorite hike I’ve done so far! Views throughout the entire hike were very scenic, rather than just one nice view at the end of the trail. The canyon and basin views were amazing throughout the hike and the frozen lakes (Loch Vale, Lake of Glass, and Sky Pond) were all extremely breathtaking. The first 2.2 miles of the trail were moderate with some slippery snow so I used my yaktrax. Once you pass Loch Vale you will definitely need snowshoes as the snow can get knee deep. The hike up to Lake of Glass from the basin area above the tree line was extremely steep and slippery, definitely the most difficult part of the trail, so take your time with this part (snowshoes not recommended for this part.) It took me 6.25 hours to finish the trip because of the snow and ice, it probably would have only taken me about 4 hours to complete if the trail was clear. Will definitely come back in the summer to hike it!

Gorgeous hike on a gorgeous day. Spikes were essential up to the Loch, and poles were helpful after the trail splits to Hiyaha. Wind was brisk at the Loch but calm enough to break for a snack. We’d made good time and decided to try for Sky Pond. Definitely a good decision, but snowshoes would have been helpful. Wind was pretty calm at Sky Pond, and the views were fantastic. Definitely recommend doing the full hike in the winter if you haven’t!

hiking
8 days ago

Once you get above treeline the views are beautiful; however, to get there you'll have to go through snow and ice. Pretty hike through the evergreens beside a creek. It's a gradual incline, but an incline the entire way up nonetheless. Above treeline is when the trail gets really hard to follow, so I wouldn't do this unless you already know the trail. I lost my way a couple times and decided to go back down before completely losing my way. Views are completely worth it, though! I did everything in trail running shoes and regret it. Definitely should bring yaktraks.

The directions to the trailhead are perfect; however, for the last 2.1 miles it is on an unpaved, very pothole-filled road.

Love this trail, very easy and has a few cool spots to hang and have a picnic by the water

Did this trail yesterday. There were o lay about 5-6 cars when I pulled in, saw only about 6-7 people the entire time. I was the last one to leave so had the trail to myself for a good 2-3 hours. Beautiful forest and creek, so quiet and relaxing. It’s a gradual uphill but not to bad for the first mile and a half (I’ve got a lot of muscle problems and asthma so if I can do it then most people can too). The trail is mostly clear and dry with some slick ice patches lingering. I talked to people coming down and they said at the 1.5-2mi mark, or where the switchbacks start, is ice and you need crampons to get up there, so I turned around when the ice got too thick. There is parking but no bathrooms, saw almost no trash (One soda cup and some really old rusted beer cans) so the trail is taken care off. Will definitely be going back after the rest of the trail thaws!

Hiked 4/14. Trail was mostly snow pack all the way to the Loch, after that snowshoes are a must unless you like postholing every step all the way to timberline falls. We had only poles and crampons but made the extra work easier. Otherwise trail was clear for the most part and views were awesome, with all the lakes well frozen.

on Irene Lake Trail

hiking
9 days ago

An excellent hike and or an overnight x2

Very pretty hike but be prepared to hike in snow knee high at times.

This is probably one of my all time favorite hikes! I suggest getting there early in the morning to avoid crowds and to make sure you give yourself enough time. This is so scenic, everywhere you look is picture perfect! Wear layers, goes from hot to cold quickly. Bring snacks and plenty of water

Went first week of April. Had a wonderful hike. Cliffs on the north side, creek crossing, heavy forest on south side. Beautiful views. Lots of moose tracks. Trail packed down. .8 mile walk to start of trail during winter.

Beautiful but busy! I left about 7 and made it back by 2. It's a bit of a burner but honestly the water is breathtaking and well worth the work. There were Llamas just chillin by Ice Lake which was random and amazing. I did continue up to Island lake which was awesome as well. People were fishing there and I sat for a good 10 minutes admiring the view. on the way there were quite a few people headed up. A few early morningers met me on the way up.

hiking
22 days ago

Such a gorgeous hike. The creek, the scenery all-around on the way up, the views at the top as said before are amazing. This is definitely a 10 mile hike and the first 5 miles is pretty much straight up. Knowing that from previous reviews we went for it and loved it. Coming down almost is rough on the knees has going up is on the legs. But such a great workout. Lots of snow we started at nine in the morning April 1 went all the way to the very top of the ridge and didn’t get back to the car till three. Lots of small breaks on the way up stop for lunch but down went pretty fast of course. In the afternoon on the way down the trail was nothing but/and puddles in rivers We were yet tracks the entire way up and we’re better for it. But if the weather holds this is going to be a pretty mucky trail for a bit but will be back I bet it in the summer it’s even better

My first hike in the Rockies 45 years ago, and still one of my favorites in the world. I prefer the early fall, after the crowds but before the snow.

Good hike but well traveled at times.

Purely amazing

It is better to have snowshoes after Loch lake. The trail was clear most of the way but not close to the Timberline Falls.

Hiked 3/24 with spikes and poles. Beautiful hike, well worth the effort !

Family hiked to Sky Pond today in snowy conditions. It was challenging, but gorgeous. Well worth the effort. Looks easier after Loch on topo maps than it is. The scramble alongside Timberline Falls is challenging in the middle due to ice, and that is where the black strap is located and very helpful. Use winter path to Loch. Spikes were fine to Loch today, but snow shoes highly recommended from there today and after today's snow until path gets worn again.

Lots of snow/ice/mud (where the sun hits). Don’t need snowshoes, but might help! At least until it continues to warm up. Beautiful trail and the dogs loved it! Easy hike/walk. I recommend it!

I continued up to the second and third lake. It was well worth it. The meadow above the first lake was full of wildflowers. Beautiful!

hiking
28 days ago

Beautiful hike, a little difficult due to going after it snowed.

(Hiked 3/24 in the AM) Not sure what everyone is talking about with the strap around the waterfall. Must have missed it. The trail was not broken after The Loch so I had to break it myself without snowshoes. Brought only micro spikes based on these trail reports. Forgot that it snowed in the park this past week so wish I had brought snowshoes. Broke trail (post holing the whole way) up to Sky Pond. Used my ice ax for some stability going up the frozen waterfall. Exhausting breaking the trail but absolutely beautiful at Lake of Glass and Sky Pond. Bring snowshoes if snow was in the forecast just to be safe, otherwise microspikes are fine.

snowshoeing
29 days ago

This was a great hike but it was 1.7 miles to the actual trailhead from the parking lot and after about .8 miles the snow was so deep we had to turn around. Nobody had gone beyond our turn around point... views were amazing and can’t wait to come back and do it in the summer!

3-24. Great trek, need poles and micro-spikes. Last obstacle, challenging, need upper body strength, a black strap has been affixed to the right side to help you over the top.

(3/22/18) I hiked this trail today. Probably my favorite hike to date in RMNP. It was an absolute blast. Lots of snow the entire trail but it was packed. My wife and I only used spikes. Never needed the snowshoes we brought. After the Loch it does become quite a bit more challenging but definitely doable. The last obstacle was difficult today. Very slick and not much to grab but was able to do it using poles. Several other people in front and behind us stopped right before the obstacle. Would highly recommend at least spikes and poles. We saw several other people not using them but would be much more difficult. AWESOME TRAIL.

hiking
1 month ago

Absolutely amazing!!

hiking
1 month ago

This was harder than we thought it would be. We wore micro spikes most of the hike. Quite icy. Lots of tree coverage. It’s a steady climb the whole way but it really got tough once we passed the tree line. It was hard to see the trail due to snow. We saw lots of moose poop but no moose; but they were close. It’s a beautiful hike. We will do it again.

You have a decent amount of ascent through trees until you get to the breath-taking views but they are SO worth it! It gets snowier and icier the higher you get (until you pass the tree line then the snow was scattered, lots of open ground). You could do it sans extra traction but YakTraks/micro spikes would definitely come in handy! I will say the actual trail is hard to find once you start to pass the tree line, mostly you're just following other people's tracks or making your own way (the vegetation does seem fragile so I wouldn't recommend stomping around all over up there!) If you can make it high enough though the views of the surrounding mountains are stunning! You hear the creek for a while which is nice and there's a pretty large parking area at the trailhead, it was really empty when I went around noon on Saturday 3/17. This trail was a bit of a workout since you're going up the whole time but with lots of water and some breaks you'll definitely be rewarded for the hard work!

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