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Difficult backpacking trip taking you around the amazing lost creek wilderness and the amazing and awesome refrigerator gulch with its massive granite boulders.

Didn’t get up to area until 10:30am, on a Monday however no trouble parking at brainard lake parking. Beautiful lakes, meandering paths until you reach Mitchell lake then it is rocky path up to blue lake which is not difficult to navigate. Trails very well marked. Did not attempt little blue, however, it must be beautiful. I can only imagine. It must be a very steep rocky ascent. It wasn’t overly crowded however once at blue lake you certainly see and hear others. I can’t imagine it with more people. We did have a moose sighting which was a gift. This hike is now one of my must dos during my annual visit Home to Boulder

hiking
1 day ago

A challenging but truly epic hike & summit. The dirt road up to the trailhead was barely passable at 5-7 mph in a Honda Civic – by comparison, it was much better than the Grays/Torreys road from hell – but you’d be tempting fate in anything less than a high-clearance 4WD. Parking spots were still available at the trailhead (North Cottonwood Creek) at 7 AM on a Monday in August. Only encountered four or five other hikers all day.

This trail has basically four parts: in the forest, in the valley, ascending to the shoulder, and the final ascent to the summit. Each section is shorter but steeper and more challenging than the last; the last two sections have probably 2000-2500 feet of elevation gain across <2 miles. Beware of the two unmarked forks along this trail – at the first, it’s left to Harvard and right to Columbia, and at the second, keep right for the Harvard trail and go left for Bear Lake. Lots of marmots and pikas towards the end, and we saw some mountain goats from the summit. Goats aside, the summit views were absolutely spectacular – with minimal wind and clear skies, we spent 40 minutes up there.

Bottom line: definitely harder than some other 14ers but, with proper planning and expectations, totally worth it.

We hiked this trail on the way to Andrews Creek campsite and it was awesome. We caught some nice sized rainbow trout that we cooked up for dinner. You need a permit if you are staying overnight and the campsites are by reservation only.

Well maintained trails that are surprisingly pretty busy. Definitely take some water with you and wear the right shoes, rocks can get a bit rough at some parts. Plenty of hills and the views are gorgeous but if you’re not used to the elevation, I’d recommend taking it slow at first. Only down side is it’s a state park so you have to pay to enter.

My dad and I set out for an ‘easier 14er.’ Headed out around 6:45am and got back to the car around 12:45. We started at Summit Lake and did Spalding to Evans, and then back down Evans and Spalding again (so basically out and back). The hardest part we thought was the return over Spalding after already having climbed across some tricky rocky scrambling to Evans. Did see goats which was the highlight for me, and the view on top of Evans was really beautiful. Would recommend maybe going down the road after summitting Evans to make the trip a little more pleasant.

Great parking at trail head. Good hike with views.

Great hike. A little crowded on weekends but worth it.

hiking
2 days ago

Very cool hike! We did the day hike to Lower, Middle, Upper Blue Lakes and to the Sneffels pass. I recommend camping at the trailhead for an early start. The lower lake is beautiful (it's better than the other two) but pretty full of campers. The best view is from near the middle lake looking down on the lower lake. The path can be hard to find going from lower to middle. The trail from upper lake to the pass was narrow and steep and did get boring, so you could definitely skip this and you wouldn't be missing out. The hike is quite steep in beginning sections, so it gets real old on the way back down (we saw two people who appeared to have twisted ankles from sliding or falling in these sections... both of whom were hiking in tevas, so do with that what you will).

Beautiful views the whole way up. There’s some scrambling near the summit. We saw lots of mountain goats and big-horned sheep.

it was pretty easy but when you get to the end the trail gets small

This hike offered a quick escape from Denver heat today, but not much escape from crowds. We enjoyed the trail, but it was very crowded and of course, there was a lot of dog poop along the trail and two dogs off leash, despite someone asking the owner to leash them. I think this hike would be much better during the week; it was just too busy on a weekend.

Beautiful hike on August 6, 2018.

completed 08.11.18, all gates open and water crossings down to a few inches.

If you are looking for a challenge you will find it! narrow, long, steep and full of obstacles. I ended up with some new scars on my skid plates but with my ego intact. signed the guest book at the empire Hilton. -remember as you go up that you have to hit all the same stuff coming back down!

'13 Wrangler sport, 3.5-inch AEV kit, 35's aired down to 11, novice driver.

Great scenic trail. Seems crowded on weekends.

This review really goes for all of the trails that start at Deer Creek Canyon. I'll echo someone else who said this is a good late start trail, it's my go-to "hangover hike" ;) There are lots of options if you get going and decide you don't have it today or if you want to add on some extra distance. Today I did Plymouth Creek to Plymouth Mountain to the Homesteader trail and I had lots of shade and solitude on PM and Homesteader. I think I was the only person on Homesteader actually, which is pretty bonkers for a trail this close Denver on a Saturday!

PM and Meadowlark both offer great views of the red rocks range and PM has a stunning view of the city framed with trees. It's also a very moderate trail so it's great for dogs and visitors.

off road driving
4 days ago

I did it with stock new Silverado. it was brutal for this kind of car, though it has 4x4 low and all that crap, this trail is not for stock SUV like KIA sportage or so, because it is really rocky and you dont enjoy the drive.
I would recommend a jeep or something like Expedition for this.

other than that, lake is nice and all, but not breathtaking.

hiking
4 days ago

Great trail!

Awesome trail and much less trafficked than Bierstadt. Recommend getting there early to get a spot in the lot before the Bierstadt hikers take them. On the way up the trail was indeed lightly trafficked, but by late morning I would say closer to moderate, especially between the trail head and the lakes.

Great distance and elevation for beginners who want to get some incline!

Tough trail for someone who is not used to hiking but worth the view at the end!

This trail gets a bad wrap here! it was actually beautiful and the signage was just fine. I counted no fewer than 5 signs directing me along the trail. and the map IS accurate. just follow it while you are walking (pull out your phone when you get to a fork in the path) and if you take a wrong turn you can easily see it on the map on AllTrails.

This is my first 14er this year so far. Initially planned for Mt. Spalding but once that was crested, Mt Evans needed to be attempted as well. Started at Summit Lake with a good friend (her 1st 14er attempt) and we got to Spalding and then went on to climb, scratch and claw our way up to Evans Summit from this trail. It was damn tough but man, are the views worth it!! We were running out of time so we descended via hitchhiking back to summit lake. Without this ride, I would’ve been late for work!

J.F. You absolutely killed this today! Great job!

Wonderful trail! We hiked only 3 miles in, then turned around as we had our dog and needed to get things done at home in the afternoon. Aspen and/or pine woods for the first mile, mostly shade. The trail then opens up to grand views of the valley below and surrounding mountains. We plan to return in the fall and do more, if not the entire trail.

Other hikers and mountain bikers. Everyone was very pleasant.

Despite the entrance being adjacent to a campground, there is a sign very specifically about no public bathrooms.

We arrived at 8:20am, four cars in the lot. Nearly full at 11:30am.

I parked at Long TH at 10ish on a Tuesday. Someone was leaving. Decided I also wanted to hike up to Isabell Glacier. I think it added 3 ish miles to the trip. But finding snow for the pup to play in was worth it. Plus it was gorgeous. The hike up to the Continental divide was more difficult. The trail isn’t hard until the split from Isabell Glacier. They are doing a lot of work on the trail which is awesome. The scenery is prettier from below. Typical rocky above the tree line hike for the last 2 miles. If you are going to do it. Must make it to the sign!

camping
5 days ago

Great climb. Camped in the basin. Summited the next morning with my 12 and 9 year old.

Nice trail but mostly sunny. Will come back when cooler. Not sure what is considered lizard rock

nice 2 hour hike, trails are not marked very well in certain areas.

Challenging in some areas for novice hikers but overall a great place to hike!

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