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I made it to Sky Pond on 11/12 after about 6 inches of snow the night before. The trail all the way up to the Loch was well traveled and I was able to do it with good winter boots only, no traction devices needed although as the fresh snow goes away and turns into ice I would highly recommend Micro spikes. After the Loch snowshoes were essential and the climb up to Lake of Glass should only be attempted with crampons/ice axe it is almost entirely ice and rock at this point. Put your snowshoes back on for the last half mile to Sky Pond and enjoy, definitely one of the best destinations in the park.

View at the top is flamesssss. Traversed up here because I heard there is a dope view of the continental divide as well as the YMCA. Smoked a fat bowl at the top and chilled with some Blue Jays, amazing time. Wore some spikes for this run but could have done without; they did help getting back down the mountain rapidly in the snow as dusk approached.

Made it to Lake of Glass last week after a scale up glacier and snow. There wasn't really a trail so went off the cuff with my boy, snow was deep af. Was a lil past 3:30pm so didn't want to head full way to Sky Pond just to be stuck in the dark trying to make way back down cliff side. Such a sick ass trail and experience though.

Such a beautiful hike! I wore microspikes the entire trip up to the waterfall which is around 9 miles round trip. I would definitely recommend wearing snowshoes though. I sunk up to my thighs in certain places by the Loch lake. I saw quite a few people up on the trail today they said that people were using icepicks to get up to sky pond.

great hike! be sure to wear layers as it is extremely windy at the top by the lake. few patches of ice

Was an amazing trail with quite a few spectacular sights. Happened to be snow up there in October and made it difficult without proper gear. Crampons needed during winter months for sure. We didn’t make it up the waterfall scramble with just hiking shoes. Was way to slick. But still recommend this trail. Turning around near waterfall ended up being about 13 miles round trip with one wrong turn.

on Sandbeach Lake Trail

hiking
9 days ago

We broke the trail and encountered 4 other parties coming up as we were going down so the trail should be decently worn in now. Traction devices might be helpful -- as would snowshoes in the last mile or so, however we did the whole trail with boots and gaiters, which kept our pants nice and dry.

The snow made the hike more challenging, but nice nonetheless.

I hiked this trail in 1972 and it was an amazing journey. A fellow wanderer and I took off one morning from Glacier Basin Campground and parked at Bear Lake. Hiked up and over the mountain and camped in a primitive campground. Got scared like I've never been scared in my life from some animal noises outside the tent. I lost the coin toss and had to see what it was. Never been so happy to see a porcupine in my life! The next day we hiked on down to Grand Lake and caught a ride with some hippies in a VW bus who took us back across Trail Ridge Road to our car. As I recall the total hike was about 16 miles and it was through some of the most beautiful country I've ever seen. I would love to think I could do it again some day, but I'm pushing 70, so memories will have to suffice.

hiking
11 days ago

Beautiful hike on 11/04/18. I was actually the first on the trail in the morning as it was snowing and got to make the first tracks which was great. It was the perfect distance for me and the summit was gorgeous and so fun to see over Estes and RoMo. Would do this hike again!

A very exciting hike, at least during wintertime. Looking forward to coming back during the summer when the lakes aren’t completely iced over. Hiked it with a friend about 3 weeks back and definitely recommend micro spikes. I couldn’t really imagine doing it now without them. Most of the trail is pretty manageable with some decent inclines but, as most people have said, the trickiest section is the scramble right next to the waterfall before glass lake. It was very icy and very slick, I would not do this one without micro spikes. The views once you get to the top are very nice, and make for a nice experience. We arrived at the trailhead at around 6:50 AM to avoid crowds. On the way up, we bumped into a few people, but on the way back down there was a steady flow of hikers. I would recommend doing this hike nice and early to avoid the most crowds as possible.

Steady climb on this, not too taxing for a local. Had a friend in from MN who did all right. Trail is a boot pack, snow the whole way up, 0"-10" and slushy on the way down. Would have been prudent to have snowshoes past the NP/SF boundary marker, but we summited in approach shoes and got a little wet. Good views on top with high winds and clouds sailing past. 4.5 hours round trip and only saw 7 other people out today.

I just want to clarify some of the statements on this thread. A lot of people seem to refer to "climbing a waterfall". There is no climbing of a waterfall on this hike. There is however, scrambling on slick ice "on the trail" adjacent to the Timberline falls. As mentioned by many reviewers, this scrambling is no joke and I wouldn't recommend it without microspikes. However, you will not be climbing a waterfall on this trail, or at least you don't have to. Such statements on the reviews made some of my friends very nervous about doing this hike. I thought I'll clarify it for others.

Fun trail. Great views, scramble up the back side of gem wall of you're comfortable for a stunning 360 degree view.

Phenomenal hike. Views are amazing; you’re up above the tree line after about 3 miles. Very steady climb, never too steep or technical. Very windy at the top - make sure you pack warm layers and cover your face. Spikes on your shoes are essential.

We started late (1300) and did finish about 1915 in the dark, however we were able to hit gem lake at sunset and it was gorgeous. It does feel like a full 13 Miles and for the falls I would try and go after a heavy rain, the falls were gorgeous but small on our trip.

Absolutely gorgeous trail... scenic the entire hike! We rented micro spikes from an outdoor shop in Estes.. wouldn’t recommend the last half of this hike without them. The waterfall is iced over and caused difficulty getting to Glass Lake but once you’re over that climb, the rest is easy. We had lunch in a Little Rock shelter by Sky Pond that helped block the crazy wind. The trail is clean but there are a ton of people hiking it so there’s not much solitude. We did a hotel in Estes Park and drove into the National Park so we could be there bright and early... VERY cute town! Plus it was nice to take a hot shower and sleep in a nice bed after this hike in the cold windy weather!

did this in Sept 2016. great hike

hiking
19 days ago

Just what I was looking for! My second day in Colorado and this was a great challenge. Took 2 1/2 hours up, wish I had spikes on my running shoes at the top, but I made due. Windy at the top!! I also want to mention, I am not a hiker.

Wonderful hike! Worth the scramble up the the waterfall.

Beautiful views!!

hiking
20 days ago

The first trail I ever did in Colorado. Review is for a summer hike. Steady climb with a good amount of privacy for such a busy park. It can seem long. Saw a lot of people coming up to backpack and stay the night before heading back down. Flies were a pest, but the beauty of the nature is more than a remedy to their peskiness.

Great hike! Beautiful small waterfall to be seen after climbing the larger fall immediately before Sky Pond. Scaling this is not difficult. You pass several alpine lakes, which can have mosquitoes during the summer. Marmots at the pond can be aggressive in their pursuit of your pack and snacks.

4 stars on account of the parking situation.

Really fun hike. Hiked on 25th Oct and started around 9am. We didn't have crampons or microspikes and did find the snow and ice a little slippy in patches but still totally doable in hiking shoes. We found hiking poles useful. The view at the top is breathtaking. West peak is easier to get up than east, but my husband did both without too much trouble.

on Flattop Mountain Trail

21 days ago

One of my favorite hikes of all time

Beautiful views!!

Hiked this today, I'd definitely recommend microspikes. I ran into a lot of people having very bad times on the trail with just shoes. Personally, I turned around right after the waterfall - lots of steepness/ice and I was a bit anxious since snow and ice earlier on the trail had started melting. I did run into a few people who either got to Lake of Glass or all the way to Sky Pond, so it's definitely doable if you know what you're doing.

24 days ago

Hiked this trail with my fiancé on 10/21 around 10 AM. Lots of parking spaces available and hardly anyone on the trail- We were able to get to the top in 3 hours with plenty of breaks thanks to our trekking poles and crampons. More than half the trail is covered in snow and ice. The summit was absolutely beautiful. There is a spot for you to sit and take in the view. You get a great view of Longs Peak and Estes Park. We don’t recommend going to the East twin peak as there is no trail to the top and falling rocks make it super dangerous. It took us 1.5 hours to get down. Best hike in Estes Park!

Hiked this in the afternoon on the 18th. First time to the park and the trail. Wonderful day. Due to some traffic, I made it to peak with trail running shoes...just a couple slick spots.

hiking
25 days ago

Challenging on the way up, but worth it. We hiked around 1pm and it took us 1.5 hours to get to the top. We encountered many other hikers. Unfortunately, this trail attracts a lot of people who don’t have respect for nature. It was hard to get a good picture with so many people around and it was even harder to enjoy with the amount of people talking around you. If I could do it again, i would go at 7 AM and avoid the crowds. This hidden little “lake” truly is a gem. Side note: it only took us 40 minutes to get back down.

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