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We started at Nymph Lake, intending to go to Alberta Falls and beyond, but we’re clearly unprepared as the trails were so packed they were like ice. So we came to try Cub Lake trail’s lower elevation and were not disappointed! It’s fairly flat in the early going but before too long it climbs and affords some great scenery. The lake itself is gorgeous and we had it all to ourselves, probably due to some light snow/sleet but it was no problem. This is a great first-day hike for people looking to acclimate before taking one of the more challenging hikes at higher elevations.

Lovely!

Only made it to Mills Lake, but it was beautiful. The weather can still be incredibly cold in the morning, but warms up significantly during the day. The trail conditions were a little sketchy at parts if you're not wearing crampons or snowshoes, but it's doable. Just prepare to sink into some soft spots. Especially once you get to the higher elevations.

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!

Only went as far as Mills Lake, but we hope to go farther next time. This hike is amazing. We saw bighorn sheep on the mountaintops above us, so don't forget to look up while you're there.

hiking
3 days ago

Hiked on 4/17/2018. Left Long's Peak Ranger station at 9:15am and reached Chasm Lake at 12:00pm. Did the whole trail with micro-spikes only. Trail is well traveled and well packed. Micro spikes a must. Weather was perfect on the way up, clear and a little windy. On the way back around 1:30pm it got really windy and started snowing. I made a hustle to get back to the treeline as fast as possible. Made it back to the Ranger station at 2:15pm.

Love it. Amazing views!

hiked this morning 4/16/18, some snow and ice accumulated on the upper half of the trail, microspikes would have been helpful but was doable without. beautiful as always!

Hiked on 4/16, the trail is well packed with snow, and not super icy. I would still recommend spikes and poles, but snowshoes are not needed. Above tree line, this trail can be brutally windy. Me and some other hikers in front of me were turned back by gale force winds that would knock you over and make it difficult to move forward. I would recommend checking the wind conditions for the trail, but even making it as far as I did the views of Longs Peak were seriously awesome.

Did it yesterday, MicroSpikes are a must, however some people did it without them.

hiking
5 days ago

Beautiful winter hike, gorgeous views of Longs Peak. Didn't need the snowshoes yesterday but was glad to have the microspikes. There are a couple areas of exposure just before the big snowfield traverse, probably better early with ice and microspikes than later with softer snow.

We hiked this loop on April 14. There was a bit of ice on the way up, maybe the first .2 Miles. The rest of the way up was clear until we got to the top and then there was snow/ice. We managed just fine with our hiking boots. Make sure you take the short trail from the loop out to see the lake with a magnificent view and mountains in the background.

hiking
6 days ago

Great Hike! Great views! Right now (Mid-April) there’s still a lot of snow - packed on the trail -about a mile from the summit. Crampons are recommended for that section but it can be done without - trekking poles were very useful as well. There’s some good uphills but it’s never too strenuous. If you’re in decent shape this will be a great hike! Please bring water! Saw so many tourists without water! It’s a 6 mile RT hike!

hiking
6 days ago

This trail will reward you with fabulous views and a particularly rewarding view of Estes Park as you crest the summit. I carried micro-spikes for the snow and ice but found I did not need to use them. The trail got busier as the day wore on, but the views are worth tolerating the traffic.

Just did this today, took 2 hours to get up at a steady pace not rushing with a couple small breaks maybe 5 min each. Micro spikes are fine as well a must. I saw people with out them and didn’t look fun for them. Took 90 mins to come down as well a steady slower pace. Great views!

hiking
7 days ago

Hiked on April 14th. Great hike! Definitely need micro-spikes. Really, really beautiful. The drop from the trail to Chasm Lake is actually pretty steep, which in the snow we decided to do anyways and just took some small boulder climbing. AMAZING views. The final few turns in the trail after the privy had some icy spots with steep drop offs but with the micro-spikes it wasn’t bad at all, just take it slow if it’s icy. It’s just so freaking beautiful. Start early in the morning. It gets icier and windier in the afternoon.

hiking
10 days ago

Beautiful trail!

hiked this morning 4/10, microspikes were sufficient up until the Mills/Loch junction but from there up to the lake snow shoes were definitely necessary (snow was well over knee-deep) super windy but beautiful as always!

My cousin and I started our trek around 7 am and arrived back at the parking lot around 11:30 am. When we first began it was lightly snowing and visibility was poor. But around 8:30 am the skies began to clear and the sun made it's way through the clouds to warm us up.

The mist surrounding Long's Peak from across the valley made for an incredibly picturesque viewing of the peak. The trail was in relatively good condition, only covered lightly with snow most of the way up, and we pretty much followed the footprints of a prior trekker the entire ascent. We did lose the trail about a mile from the summit and had to scramble up some boulders before we found it again.

Microspikes/crampons were abundantly helpful on the way down, as there were some areas on the switchbacks that were exceptionally icy, and the traction enabled us to descend safely. We only saw two other hikers on our descent, which made the peaceful tranquility of this trail one of my favorite spring hikes thus far.

This is an amazingly beautiful hike that I would love to revisit later in the summer when the snow has melted and the trail's a bit easier to follow. The views along the way and from the summit are incredibly rewarding and the long, steady hike to the top is absolutely worth it. I would highly recommend!

hiking
12 days ago

Hiked on 4/9. There was 2-3ft of fresh snow above tree line which made it very difficult to find the trail. Snow shoes are a must with all of the snow.

This is not a "bang for your buck" kind of hike, like the big name hikes out of the main RMNP east entrance. I ran into several tourists near the entrance who seemed disappointed with the hike. Instead this is a hike for solitude and being in the wilderness. Really nice water features along the hike and pristine woodland. If you need some peace and quiet then this is your hike.

We clocked 8.25 miles accounting for the extra 2 miles (1 each way) due to the winter parking lot as well as some wandering around the falls. we had snowshoes but never used them, however I suggest having them right now just in case. The waterfalls will be a lot more exciting in a month or so.

Pretty tiring uphill hike micro spikes might be a good idea very icy on the way down but extremely beautiful view at the top

I hiked this on Easter. It was snowy but packed enough for spikes and not snow shoes. Several times there was no one in sight, so I wonder how many people make it to the top. The wind was whipping! Had to stop at loch Lake but a beautiful and somewhat challenging hike!

We hiked this today and it was absolutely beautiful! We found it challenging since the snowpack was icy as well. Highly recommend using microspikes and trekking poles.

Great trail for getting grand views of most of the northeastern side of RMNP. For those acclimated and in good shape this will be a nice leisurely hike to the summit with just a little push the last 10% or so. For out of state visitors not acclimated this will be challenging, but doable with a good pace and some perserverence.

The good news is that you do not need to do the entire trail to benefit from all of the views. Even doing half of the hike will get you a lot of payoffs!

Currently the trail is a mix of mud and intermittent snow/ice. Traction is not essential but you would probably be glad to have it, especially on the descent. We wore yak trax for the first half of the way down, and after taking them off I did slip a good number of times.

hiking
20 days ago

Absolutely gorgeous views especially rounding the first right when you get a glimpse of the mountains. Micro spikes would have been helpful farther up about a half mile from the lake. Quietly passed within 6 feet of a young male elk feasting higher up the mountain. Majestic. Plenty of elk at the base of the mountain on our way out. Definitely a peaceful and soul-filling hike.

Hiked this trail with a 9 and 12 year old in tennis shoes today. The beginning of the trail (.2 mi) was slushy but easily doable. The mile up was clear and pretty easy. The remainder of the trail to the lake was snow packed but we did fine, stayed dry and warm with tennis shoes and light jackets.

hiking
21 days ago

The trail is 90% snow packed, very doable with just hiking boots but strongly recommend wearing spikes if you have them. I didn't realize the last part of the trail follows the river bed into the Loch instead of the regular way through the switchbacks. Its kind of steep so that's where having the spikes comes in the most handy. The Loch is gorgeous but I it was extremely windy so I didn't stick around too long

hiking
23 days ago

Beautiful hike. We took the family out today. We hiked in boots and it was very do-able. There are some slick spots as the snow was coming down fairly heavily on the way back. Lots of traffic for a snowy Thursday. Beautiful scenery. Highly recommend.

hiking
25 days ago

We did this hike on Saturday, March 24 at 9 am. The first mile was relatively dry dirt, the second mile was patches of snow, and the third mile was snowy. We originally brought our snowshoes and spikes but we didn’t end up using either. Trekking poles definitely came in handy descending in the snow as there was ice under the top layer of snow.
Wind was mild for most of the hike until the summit push. I think the hike is perfectly rated moderate. It’s easy enough for families and novice hikers to do and tough enough to feel like you actually did a hike. The view from the top is gorgeous and great for taking a break before heading back down.

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