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Walk the path by the river, it’s beautiful and is not nearly as rocky. We walked the river path up and it was gorgeous!! It brings you out at a nice place to lay out in the rocks and then you continue on to the main tail to the lake.

Fairly easy hike. Nicely shaded.

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.

The trail is beautiful and not too difficult. But I have to agree with other commenters that it’s very busy on weekends and the amount of loose rock is tricky. I still recommend it though because the lake and the waterfalls are relaxing. Also, parking at the Nederland park n ride and getting the shuttle is the way to go; it’s there every 15 minutes on the weekends and you don’t have to deal with the scarce parking at the trail head.

Most of the hike in the trees. Better view on the hike than panoramic view (which you are can drive to).

If you are staying at the campground (which we were) the trail is worth the hike. Not sure I would make the drive just for this hike with so many other options in the area.

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.

Beautiful hike the entire way. It took us 3.5 hours round trip. Well worth the effort. Just a friendly reminder to bring moleskin for blisters!

hiking
5 days ago

Wonderful little hike. I went with my 20 y.o. daughter and our 2 dogs. It took us about 1. Hour 40 minutes to do the loop. The old dog did fine, we had to give them water 1/2 way through. Loved the trees, flowers and a couple of pretty viewpoints.
Moderate family traffic on a Thursday.

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

backpacking
6 days ago

Nice well marked trail that takes you up to Lost Lake, a clear, shallow mountain lake at about 10,000 feet elevation. It’s a bit tough on the way up, but a fun hike down. Nice Mountain View’s and shallow rocky rivers with a couple large waterfalls.

We are a family of four, from Texas, two kids ages 11 and 12. Was a great hike. It was a moderate climb, Our motto is “relentless forward motion”. We were uncertain if we had missed the monument, but kept forging ahead and it’s probably a half mile further than the map shows. The view was definitely worth the time. This took us about three hours in total we estimated it to be 5.5 miles round-trip. Many thanks to the previous reviewer; we appreciate the comments about the lack of parking. We tend to agree drove up and then drive back down I found parking on one of the streets. For those that geocache, look for an extra surprise!

hiking
7 days ago

Nice trail. Wide trail, good one to take the kids. Go early, very sunny, no shade. First mile or so is a gentle up hill. Beautiful rock formations! Close to Denver. Coyote trail is not clearly marked on the return, bring a map along.

Traveled with a 11 month old in a pack! Summit was breathtaking. The waterfalls are simple...not sure we found the real falls! There is a ‘creek’ area that was perfect for the little one to toddle around and throw rocks. I’d definitely recommend this trail.

Fairly easy hike. Good trail improvements along the way. Definitely a lot of wildflowers, waterfalls, and scenery. The lake at the top is worth every step. We would definitely come back for a picnic lunch on a nicer day. The clouds started rolling in once we made it to the lake and we had to cut the chill time short. I definitely recommend blazing your own trail at the bottom to see a few waterfalls that aren't as easy to get to or see from the main trail. As other reviews have stated stay to the left.

hiking
8 days ago

Hiked it today with family, 4 hrs round trip including 30 mins for lunch, vertical comes at you fast in first hour, but manageable if you stay aerobic. This was my fourth or fifth time hiking American Lake, great for our first day, family in from East Coast, I came from the Okanagan in Canada. Certainly not one of the prettiest alpine lakes I have hiked to, in my opinion if the American Lake hike workout is your goal, do Cathedral instead

hiking
8 days ago

This is a moderate trail with some beautiful spots. If you see signs for Windy Peak, keep in mind that’s a side trip that is off of the Mountain Lion trail. The trail markers end once you decide to take the Windy Peak detour, so it’s easy to get turned around.

We didn’t encounter any wildlife on the trail, although we started later in the morning around 9. It’s a great workout, but there’s no “wow” view that makes it feel like it was worth the trek.

I love this hike, great views, like waterfalls and rolling rivers. go early or go late

on Raccoon Trail

hiking
9 days ago

This is a lovely hike! We started from Reverend’s Ridge campsite but ended up returning from Panorama Point the same way we had gone! It was a bit confusing.

good hike near denver

Great hike! A bit rocky throughout. We had a little trouble knowing where to go to go around the lake. It was busy and parking was tight. Would go again!

Amazing trail. Somewhat difficult in spots but the views are worth it!

hiking
10 days ago

I really enjoyed this hike despite how heavily trafficked it was. Has about everything I would want in a hike.

You will see disapointing views from others but ill just advise, this is a creek falls not waterfalls so its small. The upperfalls you will need to trek thru a creek to actually see the creek falls. Nice boulder formations surrounding it and hike itself is a nice figure 8 loop w 2 parking lots. Ive hiked this 2 times 9/2014 & 7/2018 and both times it was a great wooded hike.

Trail is not well marked for this particular route. It was beautiful but more crowded than others that are just as beautiful.

I would not recommend this trail even though I would say it provides a decent workout with some pretty scenery (nothing too special for Colorado IMHO). My boyfriend and I ended up getting lost due to the fact that the trails are unmarked. There are lots of unmarked forks you and you need to guess where you are going.

This was not a pleasant experience. We ended up walking miles more than we wanted to. All of this could have been avoided if there were signs and at least an accurate map that showed the forks.

Great trail and perfect weather! Easy until about half way through then it got a bit steeper but definitely not difficult. We went counter clockwise. Lots of water passing for pups to relax and drink from.

10 days ago

Beautiful hike! Pretty easy. We had some great views and so manybpretty wild flowers. It would be great in the fall too with so many aspen trees.

10 days ago

Great outing, easy access from Denver.

The trailhead for the Maxwell Falls lower trail is located at: 7627 S. Brook Forest Rd, Evergreen, CO 80439

I never write online reviews for anything, but I felt compelled to write one for this hike because it was great and I almost didn’t go due to all of the negative reviews that I read on this site and others.

I hiked on a Saturday, starting at around 10 am. The parking lot was full when I arrived, but there was still plenty of parking on the side of the road to the trailhead. It was about a five minute walk from where I parked to the trailhead.

There were plenty of other hikers around, but it was not at a level that I would call overcrowded for my tastes. If you want to go on a hike where you never see another hiker, this isn’t the trail for you, but we had plenty of time on the trail where we were the only ones around.

In other posts that I read, a big deal was made about bags of dog poop lying around on the side of the trail. I observed two bags during our hike, as well as a pair of men’s boxer shorts left on the side of the trail. Other than that, the trail was clean and in good shape.

The trail was picturesque and is nice and wide in some sections. The falls were not the most impressive I’ve seen on a hike, but they were substantial enough and worth visiting. We took some nice pictures in front of the falls.

We did the loop, and somehow it seemed like it was more in the five mile range or at least greater than the 4.2 miles that was claimed. The trail is moderate, with some uphill sections, but I wouldn’t call it challenging.

From reading other websites, I understand that the falls can vary in intensity due to rain, runoff, and other environmental factors, but when we went, they were definitely worth seeing. I brought five others with me on the hike, and we all thought that it was a fun and enjoyable experience. Based on my experience, I feel that this is a much maligned trail that doesn’t deserve the negative reviews that I read. We had a great time and I’m glad that in the end, I didn’t decide to go somewhere else due to negative reviews.

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