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Its snowshoe season!

The best in Colorado

hiking
1 month ago

Nice moderate hike with plenty of lakes and streams- although as a result probably not ideal during mud season... jasper lake was frozen but still beautiful.

Third time hiking this trail (first during winter and the second during summer). Despite it being mid-October, there was still a lot of snow on the upper two-thirds of the trail, so definitely bring appropriate gear and be prepared to stay out all day; it's a very long trek. Mirror Lake was frozen over but there are some nearby streams to get fresh water, if needed. Also, the gate to access Monarch Lake trailhead was open, but I know they close it as it gets closer to winter so double-check this before heading out, as it can add an extra 2 miles (round trip) to the hike. Otherwise, beautiful hike - one of my favorites in Colorado.

A bunch of moose, a bunch of lakes

hiking
2 months ago

Really gorgeous hike. The last mile up there is already a decent amount of snow and at the top, close to 6 inches. Definitely wear waterproof hiking boots.

hiking
2 months ago

Beautiful! Nice fall hike featuring some golden aspens and a couple waterfalls. In the early morning it was a misty hike through a cloud, which I thought made the whole experience even cooler.

Awesome trail! Couple of inches of snow on the trail this morning! Time to start whipping out cross country skiis and snow shoes!

Probably one of the best hikes I’ve done in CO. Like others have said, makes for a LONG day hike - still so worth it. Wish I had 2 or 3 nights to explore the surrounding Crater Lakes area.

There are 12 designated camping spots around crater lake. On a Saturday the place was packed with campers. The ranger must’ve given out at least a dozen citations. Even though permits are not required at this time of year, got to get up there early to claim a spot.

Will definitely be bringing the pack for next time!

Ah, this was a great hike. I went with my dog last Saturday and we had a blast. Arrived at the trailhead around 7am. It was pretty busy but still over 10 spots available. I started on Hessie Trail and went to Lost Lake. After Lost Lake, I hiked on Devils Thumb for a few miles. We turned around about 2miles from Jasper Lake because we were short on time. Wish I could’ve made it to the lake because the weather was perfect. My Fitbit said we went 12miles. Not sure how accurate it is though. We got back to my car around 11ish. Lots of cars waiting for parking and crowds of people on the trail. Again, so glad we got there early and hope to go back to hike to the lake soon.

If you want to go to Crater Lake I would definitely suggest doing an overnight backpacking trip. Its too far for one day. I think its also longer than listed. I saw a lot of HUGE moose. Bring tons of water. Don’t do it alone like I did.

hiking
2 months ago

Amazing trail with spectacular views. There is a spectacular glacial lake not on the map, but you have to climb to above 12,000 feet before you get a look at it. It was frozen when we got there. This trail is extremely difficult and mostly over large boulders. You must have excellent footwear, excellent balance, and ample cold weather clothing. If you're unsure if you can tackle this trail, take the easy hike to Lake Isabelle and make your decision once you're there. It took us 8 hours round trip from the long lake parking lot. Don't let the reasonable distance fool you! Watch for cairns, as most of this trail is across boulder fields.

Also be very careful about altitude sickness and understand the signs. I live at 1000 ft and was able to climb to the end of the trail, but had symptoms of altitude sickness into the next day.

There is a bull moose, cow, and a calf living just above the lake. We had the good fortune to see all three from a safe distance. Watch out, as both the bull and cow are known to chase and attack!

There are also ample Pika (endangered) and marmots living in the boulder fields. Keep your eyes open!

This was an awesome trail, be ready to climb. With an almost nonstop gain in elevation until you reach the lake this is definitely an awesome workout with views that make up for every step you climb. Check out my IG for pictures from the hike @alvarado_dan_

Beautiful hike!! It was long and got rough near the end, but the lake and cirque views are worth it!

Up to Cirque Meadows is very easy. The aspens are changed, making much of the path very colourful.
We were confused at first about the marked campsites which are farther up the trail past the meadow-the sites were nice, site 3 has a good view.
The rest of the way was tougher, and some places we lost the trail as it wound up the boulders.
The end views are breathtaking, and great photo opportunities. I plan on going again in June when the wildflowers are bloomed.

Such a beautiful and fun hike! So many water features on the way up and beautiful foliage. Love every mile!

Beautiful scenery, very diverse (meadows, forest, open space above tree line with amazing views, stunning lake), trail well maintained. Would highly recommend and would do it again! One thing I would like to add is that the mileage seems a bit off. I measured about 8 miles out and back.

Amazing trail with fantastic view at the end! Not a full 8 miles around the lake, we did the full thing and it came out to under 7 with a lot of exploring. Absolutely breathtaking views at the end. The trail is pretty flat, with maybe max of 0.5 miles uphill. Great for out of towners. Parking fills up early, be prepared to walk extra mileage if you’re after 9 even on a weekday.
Lots of moose in the area, spotted two at the lake on the way in.

backpacking
3 months ago

Gorgeous trail! So many different types of terrain. Loved the open meadow entering into Indian Peaks Wilderness Area. We got a permit and camped overnight at Jasper Lake - it was rainy and windy, but campsite 3 is pretty protected. Used our bear canister as recommended - didn't run into any wildlife other than squirrels and chipmunks. The lake is rather low, but the views were still pretty and the aspens are chainging for a beautiful, colorful site.

on American Lakes Trail

hiking
3 months ago

Hiked today and was impressed with the views...then we saw the moose on the trail. Incredible! Just hike up to Snow Lake...you won’t regret it. Maybe 15-20 people in the 10 miles we hiked.

hiking
3 months ago

Outstanding! Ideal for backpacking in to camp at the end of the trail before it gives way to trails to Thunder Pass and Snow Lake. Could hike to Thunder Pass one day and Snow Lake another, or crush them both in one day!

backpacking
3 months ago

So beautiful and worth it! Gets steep! Make sure to get a permit if you spending the night ( they sell them at ACE in Ned). Absolutely beautiful pass, dropped down to 30 at night

hiking
3 months ago

Stunning the whole way!

on Jasper Lake Trail

3 months ago

Great hike. Parking is kind of terrible but so is every other hike in CO. They do have a shuttle if you don’t feel like walking to the trail head (but you are there to hike??) we hiked from our parking spot on the road up to jasper lake and then probably another half a mile or so up to a waterfall. Really pretty. Highly recommend hiking up to the waterfall. For us it ended up being about 13 miles and 4,000 feet incline (according to the recording that all trails records)

hiking
3 months ago

What a great hike! 6 Moose and some deer along the trail. Lots of wild flowers and enough of a distance and elevation gain for a good workout. The lakes at the top were amazing. Quite a few campers staying over night by the lakes. Trail is very rocky in several places, but easy to follow with so many different views from thick forest, open meadows to hill top scenery.

Really enjoyed this trail. It was pretty easy going. We took our three dogs along and it wasn’t too difficult for them. They loved playing in the lake at the end. We did not hike up to snow lake or thunder pass. According to my Fitbit, the distance was closer to 8 Miles. Saw three moose on the way out of the parking lot. Would have been a great trail for backpacking.

hiking
3 months ago

I did this trail yesterday and it was absolutely stunning. The hike up to the Cirque is relatively flat and I think would be doable by most people. It is lined with aspens so would be really pretty if you catch them in turning season. The trail is very diverse-aspens, then pines, some meadows, lots of small lakes, streams, and some waterfalls, wildflowers, berries, mushrooms...it was nice and cool as well. Not crowded. The lakes surrounded by peaks and snow were beautiful blue. I think it was more like 11.4 miles, and I was shocked that it went by so easily, mostly cause a lot of it is mostly flat.

hiking
3 months ago

I consider this a get right hike. This hike has everything without being too physically demanding. It has good flat parts, good inclines, a beautiful halfway turnaround spot at the Cirque Meadows, a high alpine lake, aspens, rivers, wild flowers.

If you have been on some rough hikes this will be perfect difficulty to get you right. We started at 8:00, reached Emmaline by 10:10, and were done by 12:45. A dip in the lake was cold but surprisingly refreshing.

hiking
3 months ago

Hit the Trailhead by 6:30 AM, parking had just begun to overflow. Beautiful day, heavier foot traffic as the afternoon stretched on. I’d recommend this hike during the week when crowds would be thinner. A great way to enjoy Colorado. Saw several moose, a couple deer, and a handful of marmots.

hiking
3 months ago

I bet there aren’t a half dozen hikes this visually
stunning in all of Colorado.

For a Saturday in the summer, the trail didn’t feel crowded at all above Lake Isabel. We arrived at 630 am and Long Lake TH had one final parking spot.

Gaining 2100 or so over 4.5 miles sounds more like a moderate hike, rather than hard. But then you do it. Because so much of the vertical is in that last 1.5 miles to the pass, it’s a lung buster to the finish. The terrain is rocky but completely non-technical or more complicated than a few talus crossings. That being said, I was glad to have trekking poles for the descent.

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