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hiked this trail today! reaching the summit was impossible. i did not have snow snoes, but dont think they would have made much of a difference. still incredible views and an awesome hike! want to do this one again in the summer :)

Absolutely beautiful.

Great day hike, not too challenging and a nice steady incline. A good amount of snow was on the trail but it was packed down well, no spikes or poles necessary. Saw no other people and the view at the top was incredible. Very cold and windy at the top.

Well worth the trip. It was a big snow day which made it almost the perfect day to do this. We backcountry skied. Snowshoes would also be doable. It would be impossible to use only hiking boots and crampons on this trail today as the snow was too deep and powdery. We were on the trail 4 hours and made it 5 miles total (2.5 miles out then back). Did not make it all the way to finch lake. Even though we were unable to complete the out and back, there was still plenty of beautiful forest to see. Not many views, but plenty of evergreens. There was not any other people on this trail today. The parking lot was filled with snow. A full sized SUV would be needed to park there. I have a small SUV and was able to get it into the driveway of the lot and pulled it off to the side. I recommend that you drive to this trailhead in a 4-wheel drive vehicle with snow tires.
Overall, this is a good workout for a backcountry skier. The trail is easy to follow and it would be difficult to get lost. The elevation gain makes it somewhat challenging but not overly burdensome. There are a significant number of rocks/small boulders on the trail. This did not become a problem, but does requires that skiers beware.

hiking
8 days ago

My favorite trail on the west side of the Rockies. Vista views the entire way and amazing 360° view at the top including Long's Peak and Grand Lake.

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.

My husband and I attempted this hike today, but the back half was too snow-packed. I’ll review what we did do:

The RMNP guard station was closed, but you are still able to drive through into the next parking lot, after that the road is closed, and it’s about a 1 mile walk on ice/packed snow to the trailhead (you pass the first set of trailheads and continue on to the large ranger station at Wild Basin trailhead, where you’ll see the sign for Bluebird Lake Trail, too. Note that you’ll follow the Ouzel trail past Ouzel Falls and Lake before you reach the actual Bluebird Lake Trail.

The walk from the parking lot to the trailhead is pretty miserable without YakTrax/MicroSpikes—we walked about halfway to the trailhead without, and I would consider YakTrax required! Once we started on the trail, it continued with hard-packed snow and ice at a relatively low incline for about 1.5 miles to the Falls, then after that there was an increasing amount of fresh powder accumulating, making it much more slow-going. Right at the halfway/3-mile Mark, the incline increased significantly, and there was about 1.5-2 feet of powder on top of the ice and snowpack. At this point, we continued on about 5 minutes before deciding to turn back. If you have snowshoes, you MIGHT be able to continue past this point, but it was actively snowing, covering our tracks and obscuring the trail. And it was really difficult to make any progress in the deep snow. If you try, make sure you plan for the trip to take twice as long, as it was very slow. Still beautiful and worth the trip to do the half that we were able, but don’t get stranded out there!

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.

hiking
24 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.

on Flattop Mountain Trail

26 days ago

One of my favorite hikes of all time

hiking
28 days ago

Went oct 19. we didn't expect the snow and hard packed ice so that slowed us down like crazy. but the few miles we did get to we're outstanding! so many great views and lookout spots! highly highly recommend!

I hiked to Bluebird on Saturday. The last 2 miles were slow going because of snow. There was quite a bit of ice/snow pack on the trail to Ouzel Falls. Bluebird is already frozen over. If you have Microspikes throw them in your pack.
The road is closed to the back parking lot, it is about 1 mile to the trailhead from the winter gate.
Loved seeing the 3 male moose at the first lake!
I love the Bluebird Trail!!!

hiking
30 days ago

I love this trail. My favorite in the Rocky Mountain National Park thus far. Going at a slower pace (really taking in the views and having a bummed knee) it took my friend and I 8-9 hours total. We went during peak fall foliage at that altitude, which is around early to mid September, HIGHLY SUGGESTED. It made the trail even more beautiful. A good part of the trail is surrounded by smaller beautiful trees that change color for fall, while surrounded by mountain peaks. The trail passes by the Ouzel Falls and overlooks Ouzel Lake. The end is a scramble up some steep sloped rocks, where you should follow the little rock piles people made to mark the trail (I added to these as well). It's a beautiful lake and if you look in the opposite direction it's a beautiful view of the valley you just climbed up. If you get up there quickly and feel like you want to keep going, there are two more lakes you can scramble up to past Bluebird Lake. I don't think there is any paths leading up there though

My two sisters and I headed out on this trail because it was recommended to us as a good horse trail. No way would I call this a good horse trail . It is so rocky and the beginning is steep, narrow and rocky. on the second half , you run in to these bench rock steps that are as high as two feet. It was tolerable going up, but going down is a bear! We aren't wimps but this trail was just not fun. Anyone who called this trail easy is nuts!

This is a nice, wide trail with not much elevation gain that I hiked on Thursday. It was really icy on the trail so wear good hiking boots and I’d recommend trekking poles too. I didn’t have poles and slid around a lot!! Still a pretty hike to a big open meadow. Think if it hadn’t been for the ice, I’d enjoyed it a lot more.

Hiked this today, 10.18.18. Spikes needed only to ghost town but if you want to hike to ridge line, you will need snowshoes. Snow is deep about .25 miles on the trail to the right beyond wood gate. I postholed to my knees and turned around. Beautiful though.

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.

Great trail. I didn’t see anyone for the middle 2.5 hours. Beautiful views, great wildlife.

hiking
1 month ago

You will need snowshoes for the last 2 or 3 miles after the Sunday storm. Close to lion lake, snow was at least 3 feet deep. We had to break the trail after junction between Lion and Thunder lakes.

I did this trail and tracked it on my Fitbit, I knew my Fitbit would track the distance a little less than what the distance really is from my experience but it was a little more than six miles one way to Lake Verna from the East trailhead. It was totally worth it but I’m not sure what everyone is smoking to think it’s 12.9 round trip. I was tracking at least 15 Miles total. The sign at the trailhead can not be accurate unless it’s tracking the river that comes from the lake, before you actually get to the huge lake. We didn’t see any wild life and we were the only ones on the trail for a few hours. We started around 8:30am and arrived at 1:30pm. We headed back at 2:00pm and got to the parking lot around 5:30pm. It was beautiful but don’t underestimate the distance and the amount of hills that are required to climb to get to the lake.

Wandering through the ghost town and up to the summit was wonderful.

Amazing views, worth every step.

hiking
1 month 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.

1 month ago

Great trail. A lot of switch backs that make the climb fast yet steady. Elevation wise it got tough for me around the last mile. Very sluggish but worth it. Even had some snow which made it even prettier.

hiking
1 month ago

The trail can be a bit steep at first but is a solid workout and journey into the woods. Not many views as you are deep in the forest but totally worth it.

hiking
1 month ago

Great hike and great weather. There was about 2" of fresh powder near the lake but no snowpack. I saw a giant moose near the trailhead and saw tracks everywhere. Keep your eyes peeled. Almost every time I come to the Wild Basin area I see a moose or two. I started my hike at 7:15 and got to bluebird lake at 9:45 (2.5hrs). Round trip took me less than 4.5 hrs. I've hiked this trail many times and keep coming back. Great trail!

I did this trail September 29,2018. It’s a steep hike with a good scramble to get to the top. Beautiful views are worth the work.

Horseshit. Literally everywhere. Here is a serious question. Why does the National Park Service ban pets (leashed or not), but allow horses on trails? The impact pets make to park trails while leashed is miniscule compared to the loads of dung and raping of grasslands that horses make. All so their fat ass owners don't have to breath hard. And yes I saw those horses feeding on that big meadow, stepped around their huge fresh piles and verified that their owners were indeed very fat. Also verified that their horse trailer and truck took up a quarter of the parking space. All for the pleasure of two fat asses. /rant over.

Fantastic hike, exhausting but totally worth it. We got lucky and saw 4 moose at the lake. Also Aspens along the trail were gorgeous and the views of Grand lake were really pretty. It took us 4 hours to get to the lake and about 2 and change to come down. Highly recommend during fall season (we hiked this at the end of September)

Actually 14 miles. Steady incline. Same views for most of the hike otherwise it would be higher rated. I like variety. Lots and lots of switchbacks!

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