Explore Summer 18 - view hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Summer 18 Map
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hiking
7 hours ago

Amazing views at the upper lakes: definitely go further from the upper mohawk lake. I started at 05:30 and was alone at the top, when I got back down around 11 there were a lot of people. The trail up to the lower mohawk lake has a lot of small side trails and it wasn't always clear to me if i was going te right way, so would recommend having the trail offline to be sure (I forgot). Also: I saw many people going up the 4WD road from the parking lot, but you can go on the spruce creek trail through the forest.

9 lakes on the trail. make sure to go to lakes above upper mohawk, favorite of the all

Was a very nice trail. Took spruce trail up and it was very easy. After you get to the road from the trail the fun starts. At some points I thought this was a more difficult trail as you are climbing up a rock face. We left around 9:30am, put up our hammocks for about 45 min at the lower lake and got back to the car around 2:15pm. Definitely a challenge but the view is worth it!

Recently ranked hardest hike in Summit County and top 5 hardest hikes in Colorado -- and, after hiking just about everything else in the area, I would have to agree. My roommate and I literally decided to do this hike on a whim after staring at this mountain for 2 solid years. Middle section of the hike is brutal and most of the 3000 ft of elevation gain happens in little more than a mile and a half. The trail is relentless going up and down and the skree field in the middle is tough. Warning, I brought my lab (like I do on all hikes) and she barely made it through the middle (and she is probably one of the most capable hikers you will ever meet). I would recommend you not bring your dog past tree line unless you know he/she can handle it. View at the top was amazing, and incredibly silent. Bring lots of water, nothing past a small creek very early into the hike. Would I do it again -- probably not -- but it was worth it. FYI, it took us about 5 hours out and back, and we are pretty solid hikers.

hiking
1 day ago

Excellent trail. I would consider it moderate to difficult. The lakes were low so the waterfall wasn’t that great. But overall it is worth the effort. Something i learned is to take spruce creek trail from the trailhead to avoid walking up the jeep trail from the parking lot. Saw mt goats at the lake along with a beautiful view.

Absolutely beautiful fall hike! The aspens are gorgeous, and the mountains are spectacular!
The waterfall/creek at the end is nothing to write home about.
Little shade coverage, even when you’re in the trees.
The dirt road is about 5 miles and VERY bumpy- so make sure your car is ready! It’s fine in lower clearance cars as long as you drive nice and slow.

Great hike, tough on lungs and legs. No scrambling at all. The pup loved it as it wasn’t all too rocky until the summit

Did this hike about 5 days ago. The Golden aspen were striking and views of mountains ahead and on either side were magnificent. The falls are nice as well. It is quite sun exposed for much of the walk. We went early in morning but even then it was a hot day, but very lovely

on Mohawk Lakes Trail

2 days ago

Awesome but long

We only hiked about 4.5 miles of this trail since we got on the road a little later than expected. Still a beautiful hike, is mostly a steep incline for the first couple miles so I would recommend being prepared for that. There’s a really pretty waterfall around mile 2(ish) off to the side. Would definitely like to go back and go backpacking!

I am a Summit County resident and have hiked many of the surrounding peaks. I think Buffalo offers some of the most stunning views. I completed the hike in just under 4 hours round trip. The Boulder field was not that bad and the carins were pretty easy to follow. Over all, this was a very nice hike.

this trail was amazing. parked at the trail head the night before and slept in my car. the lakes were cool and the summit even better. went on a Saturday and only ran into a handful of hikers. when we got back to the parking lot it was packed with the bierstadt crowd. definitely recommend for a challenging, rewarding, and less crowded hike.

DO NOT DO THIS HIKE! The directions to the 13er are not clear at all. We thought it would be obvious or there would be a sign. But you’re apparently supposed to know which mountain it is and scramble off trail. That is very unsafe! We realized we passed it up but thought we could do a full circle and got terribly lost. We ended up hiking all the way to Georgetown (18 mile trip total) and calling a taxi to get to our car. What a cluster. I’ve never had a hiking experience like this but the directions are NOT clear on this app nor was it in my book. I would recommend hiking until your pedometer hits 3.5 miles then turn back.

Beautiful hike with golden aspen hills, blue skies, and majestic mountains in full view. Toughest part of the day is the drive to the walk. We made it in a non suv, but it’s slow, bumpy, and dusty. You are exposed in sun for most of the hike, so come early or enjoy the heat (and the crowds). But despite all that one of the most beautiful hikes ever

hiking
5 days ago

It's a long one from the 2WD parking lot, but definitely worth it still. If you have 4WD, I suggest going up at least a little way.

Definitely make sure that you stop by Mayflower Lake bc it's off spruce creek trail but only by about 50 meters, so it's easily worth it.

Mohawk Lake is absolutely gorgeous--the water is a deep blue. Keep going tho and there are 4 more lakes above it. Above Mohawk is the first time you'll really feel like you're really out there. You hop above treeline right after Mohawk Lake. We went in the fall and the colors were tremendous.

Started at 5a.m. on a Friday, was all alone until I got to the lower lake but no one was at any of the 5 lakes past the lower one which was nice (they were much bluer than the first lake). Last lake didn't have a defined trail to it. Cool mining history, trail is deceivingly flat in beginning. Parking lot was full when leaving around 10a.m. Unfortunately there were lots of dog poop bags, toilet paper, and white people.

Awesome hike! Worth it to go all the way to the upper Mohawk lake. We had trouble finding the trail near the end but people on the trail were very helpful!

went this morning and arrived in the parking lot of the URAD valley mining area at about 9:30. Had no clue what was a trail so I had just hiked up behind the gate that said you could hike, but also said danger avalanche area. I went solo and it took me about an hour to 1.5 to reach the base of Mt. Parnassus. I had hiked straight up the side and reached the top at about 11. not a soul was on the small 4x4 road I walked up nor in the parking lot. descended but lost the road I was on and ended up steeply hiking down a gulley trying to follow the creek until I found it again after about 1.5 miles of alpining down. got down in 30 mins. either way this is recommended.

Great trail with scenic views! We hiked counterclockwise and camped one night at Devils Thumb Lake. You have to have a permit durning the summer months up until Sept 15th. We camped on 9/7 and the temperature at night got down to around 30 - 31 degrees so make sure you have the correct gear even in early September. The first part of the trail going counter clockwise with a 35lb - 40lb pack can be difficult on some of the climbs in elevation, take breaks and drink plenty of water and you’ll be fine. There are plenty of water opportunities on the trail, so accessing water isn’t an issue for the most part. The ascend up from Devils Thumb Lake to the High Lonesome Trail has some great views you climb about 1,000 feet over approx a 1/2 - 3/4 mile. The rest of the trail after you come down off the High Lonesome Trail by King Lake you’ll be going down in elevation the remainder of the time. The overall trail is marked “ok” but recommend having a map or gps as back up, I would not rely on the trail markers only when hiking this trail. Great 15 + mile trail with beautiful views......go get some!!

hiking
10 days ago

There's little on Crystal Peak - that's what I'll concentrate on.

As you are hiking toward Upper Crystal Lake on the single-track trail, you'll see a cairn on the right and a dirt trail. At this point, you're about 0.5 miles from the upper lake. The AllTrails recording reflects the trail with the dashed line.

There is a trail part way to Crystal Peak - to the saddle. You can also see it on google maps satellite.

Turn right, briefly hike up, you'll see one or two more cairns. The trail temporarily disappears as you head left and cross a few rocks - maybe 10 - 15 yards - and you'll pick up the trail again. Trail takes you to the saddle - left is Crystal Peak, right Peak Ten.

As you head to Crystal Peak, there is a semblance of a trail in the beginning. Eventually, it's all rocks - class 2 scramble/limited exposure. Your choice - stick with poles or put them in the backpack and put on your gloves as you climb to the peak.

Gloves came in handy for the rock scramble. Beautiful views!

Great hike and not crowded. We got to the trail head around 7 am, once you pass the lower lake and go around on the trail, the trail is hard to find/see (we could see the trail above - we just started hiking up until we found it again). Great incline in a short period of time. You do hit a couple false summits as well. Great views at the top.

This trail turned out so much better than what I expected. It is a difficult trail due to the altitude gain you make along the way, Make sure to pack a lot of water and snacks. I read a lot of the reviews before going and they were right the second half of this trail is not marked well, but it isn't too hard to find your way. I ran into several groups of people who had gotten lost along the way. This is a moderately trafficked trail it didn't feel too crowded. It was absolutely beautiful and I would high recommend going.

hiking
16 days ago

Hiked during Labor Day weekend, started at 7:30 and took 5 hours round-trip starting from the bottom parking lot with my Ford Escape. This included spending an hour hanging out at the upper lake and a few snack breaks. On our way down we ran into several people so I would advice starting early to avoid the crowds and the afternoon rain! Like others have said, I have hiked this many times before with my family and they need to add more signs where people have made their own paths because it can be confusing. Several times it breaks off into different paths, and if you stay on the left side you should find your way all the way to the upper lake! Several people continue past the upper lake to look at the beautiful view and I would advice doing this as well!! Bring layers and lots of water!

Easy hike in 4 hours sleep and shitty knees

I would give 5 stars but the enormous, uphill boulder field brought it down for me. We ended going straight up the boulders because we lost sight of the cairns. I would suggest wearing gloves, I beat up my hands climbing up and down the rough boulders. This was more challenging then the 14rs I've climbed so don't be decieved into thinking it's easier due to only being13,000 feet. Watch for the cairns they're easy to miss. We were disappointed that there weren't any mountain goats visible, since it seemed as if most people would see them that have climb this mountain.We did see some medium sized birds running around that looked like large mourning doves. The views at the top made navigating the boulder field worth it.

off road driving
16 days ago

Sep 4, 2018 rode a stock Honda CRF 250L to within 1/4 mile of the upper lake and stopped. Great ride overall. Saw a sheep near the end and stopped to let him graze right to me. Fun! After that I turned around. The upper lake section of trail becomes increasingly difficult for a so-so offroad bike. I was glad to turn around and in fact had some difficulty doing even that since the trail was traversing a steep rocky slope and offered no wider spot to use. Fine FINE ride though to high alpine area. Getting to the lower lake was a piece of cake (and I saw a decent mule deer buck on the way there). I went early on a week day and there was no one else there.

hiking
16 days ago

Hiked this trail many times before. I hiked this with my family (which included my 75 yr old dad and 72 yr old mom) on Labor day. The trail is showing some wear and could use some work. The upper part is quite challenging and so many people have veered off the trail that many times I was not sure I was on the correct trail. The hike gets tough at the top and is pretty steep but doable. Remember to bring water and warm layers as it gets really cool at the top. We started from the trail head, not the jeep trail, which was nice but add and extra 2 miles round trip. I love this trail and the scenery but it is getting to be a crowded trail which makes me sad. I felt like I was hiking with the entire Denver city!

hiking
16 days ago

Beautiful and uncrowded. View from the summit is fantastic. Encountered a herd of Mountain Goats at the top. A few sections of the trail to the summit are faintly marked and steep.

This was a great hike. Beautiful scenery and challenging but very doable. As mentioned by others the road was rough, we parked in the upper parking (F-150 did fine). Not sure it was worth it though. The Spruce Creek Trail is nice and worth the extra mile and a half in my opinion from the lower parking area. Our 8 and 10 year old kids were able to do this hike as well, but it does get a little technical in spots. Trekking poles certainly helped.

hiking
17 days ago

Incredible hike!!!! A must do. Took my sister and I 5.5 hrs round trip (we're in our late twenties and fairly athletic/experienced hikers) and we clocked it at more like 13.75 miles to the lake and back! We hit the trail around 6:30am and had the lake to ourselves, although we saw quite a bit of traffic on our way down. Definitely have to come back and camp up there, it was absolutely stunning.

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