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

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hiking
20 hours ago

My husband and I arrived from Kansas City on Thursday and hit this trail on Friday. We had Quandary Peak on our Saturday agenda so wanted a scenic but reasonably high altitude hike to help us acclimate. This trail was very enjoyable with some moderately steep sections but lots of mild areas too. So many stunning views along the way. We found a ledge to rest at the top for a snack, and were greeted by a fat little chipmunk that shared our snack straight from my husband’s hand. Such a treat!

hiking
4 days ago

Another note:
Geo Markers (2) located at 39.53518, -106.25963

hiking
4 days ago

First of four hikes we did in the area around Vail and still the best. Beautiful hike with lots of variation and great views. It was also the first hike after spending a week at sea level. Jumping up to 12k ft without acclimating was a challenge. Also, this hike was done on a Monday morning around 0845, and there were about 8-9 cars at the trailhead. By noon, it was a zoo, WAY TOO MANY people on the trail and probably 35-40 cars in the parking lot and along the road. Do it, but do it early.

hiking
4 days ago

Good option coming back from beaver lake trail via allies way versus just out and back . Nice to be in trees and traversing ski slopes after being on old road.

Beautiful hike! Loved the changing landscape. Was definitely closer to hard trails I have hiked rather than moderate, as rated by AllTrails. The cabin was at 3.85 miles by my GPS and I went another 1/3 mile (mostly uphill) to the bowl and turned around at 4.2 miles. Started at 8 am and didn't see anyone until I was coming back down and about 2 miles from the trail head.

Excellent hike! It took us 2:.5 hours to reach the lake at a good pace....and then a nice dip in the lake!!

Great hike. Well maintained trail and beautiful flowers and views the entire hike. However this should say HEAVILY trafficked trail. I don't think I have ever hiked any trail with that amount of people on it. Parking lot full and cars parked for 1/4 mile down the road in both directions. Great hike, just expect to be hiking it with a lot of other people.

Views are absolutely stunning!! Would 10/10 recommend this hike and will have this high on my list to do again in the fall. Definitely get there early. I showed up at 8:15 on a Saturday morning and pretty much had the trail to myself. By 10:30 when I got back to the lot it was nuts!

Took the Rock Creek Trail for about 1.2 miles before a fellow hiker told us we were taking the much longer route with lots of bush whacking. Decided to turn around and take the Gore Trail instead. This trail was about 6 miles round trip from the trailhead to the lake. The trail itself wasn’t exceptionally interesting but the lake is well worth the trek. Beautiful views!

Wow! One of the most beautiful hikes I’ve ever experienced! Lots of wild flowers and birds to enjoy on your trek up. The views from the top were unbelievable and definitely worth the hike. I would recommend getting there early as it got pretty crowded by the time we left. The trail was listed to be 4 miles, though my Fitbit logged 5.2 total.

9 days ago

Brutal climb, but worth it. Gorgeous views, flora and wildlife. Plan for 6-8 hours on Elbert. Start early for sunrise and missing potential weather. We slackpacked with granolas, 100 oz water, rain jacket and emergency bivy. Took 7 hours, and we stared at 5am. ENJOY!

hiking
9 days ago

This is an amazing hike. You get a little of everything - meadows, trees, lots of wild flowers in July, and large/unique rock formations all surrounded by wonderful mountain peaks. Shrine Pass Rd is dirt but is in fairly good condition when coming from I70. Not so good if you continue past the trail head. There are lots of people on trail.

hiking
9 days ago

Beautiful! Not many people for a Saturday in Vail. Caught the end of wildflower season.

hiking
9 days ago

Nice moderate hike with wildflowers and scenic vistas at the end. The rock formations at the end are unique and worth the extra hiking.

Sweet, simple, and to the point.

Thought I got a late start at 7 on a Sunday morning but turns out I was the first one in the parking lot and first one at the top. Tons of white people on the way back down, an easy trail with views and wildflowers.

Difficult but fun! One hell of a leg workout!

love this trail - wildflowers, views.

on Pitkin Lake Trail

hiking
11 days ago

The trail is definitely steep but nothing too challenging. We completed the trail with our four year old doing it on his own. Got to the lake in five hours, all trails clocked it as 5.6 miles one way. Beautiful views, tons of wild flowers!

Great short hike! Spectacular valley views, and forests terrain. I especially like how the trail is dotted with raspberry bushes. My only complaint is that it's very steep most of the way, which made it slightly more challenging than anticipated.

hiking
13 days ago

Took the family out early on a Sunday. We were the first on the trail about 8:30. The 3yr old, and wife (4 or 5 months preggo...idk) and myself.

Little one made it all the way to the first lookout- a couple good rest stops and some promise of a ride down helped get us there. After that it was on the shoulders. The incline after was real!!!

Aspens made the trail really cool halfway up. Lookout at the top was really cool. Windy and Sunny- it felt great after being in the shade the whole way up.

The hike down is no joke. You don’t realize how steep those runs were.
Your legs are going to talk to you :). Overall nice hike. Did it carrying 45lb toddler and didn’t feel unsafe.

WOW! We were looking for something easy between two more difficult hikes, and this was a seriously gorgeous surprise. This hike has something for everyone. You'll see vast meadows of wildflowers, a healthy forest with little spots to rest along the way. Once you break out of the forest it becomes steeper, but there were many families with kids on the trail who were doing just fine. The adventurer among you will be very tempted by the amazing rock formation at the end, and will have to be convinced to save going into the valley to climb up into it for another day. There are nice spots for a picnic at the top and truly beautiful vistas. You really do feel like you are on top of the world and the rock formations are unlike anything we have seen in Colorado. Parking is easy and plentiful, and you will see many friendly faces along the way.

hiking
14 days ago

I hiked this trail Friday with 2 other friends. There are still lots of wild flowers. The views are awesome and it was nice to see cross mountain. Looking at the rock formations, see if you see the form of a dogs head drinking water from a fountain. Even for a Friday there were a lot of people on the trail. Get there early.

hiking
15 days ago

Moderate trail, good for kids, fairly easy hike until you get to the end. definitely go in the morning. We went at 3pm and it rained (icy/rainy mix, oddly) off and on with periodic thunder. Wildflowers are still out. if you have a 4WD, take the road all the way back to Red Cliff...there's one restaurant in the town (decent food and beer) and it's a beautiful and easy drive though a bit bumpy.

This is a great hike if you are looking for something that is around or under three hours. As noted below, the trail is shaded most of the way to the top. The aspens about 2/3 of the way up are huge! The trail is relatively steep and a good workout. Coming down the long straight portion of the hike is the hardest and definitely tests your knees and hips! Note that the trail marker at the beginning of the hike is marked "Game Creek" and pay attention to stay right at the fork towards the the creek crossing.

Did this trail yesterday. It was a perfect morning and the wildflowers were amazing! Very busy on a Saturday and storms moved in about noon as we finished. Do this trail early!

backpacking
15 days ago

Great vista views at the top.

hiking
15 days ago

Awesome hike! Pretty challenging, honestly, especially the beginning and end pitches. It mellows out quite a bit in the middle with a couple of quick pitches in between. I used the Map My Run app and logged 5.42 miles one way and it took me just under 5 hours round trip. Gorgeous scenery, lots of wildflowers, and tons of water crossings (easy). There are a few places where the trail splits but it’s pretty obvious which way to go as most of the wrong ways are blocked with sticks. I only came to one that wasn’t blocked around mile 4. I stayed right and that appeared to be correct pretty quickly after I passed a couple of other hikers coming down. This is not a hike for the faint of heart, but it’s definitely worth the push to get to the lake. If you’ve got weak knees, you’d probably benefit by hiking with poles. Bring lots of water and snacks and check the forecast for rain. Completed 7/28/18
Side note: Do NOT try to park in the grassy area to the back left as you pull in. Dude that lives nearby is a total ass hat - Save yourself the interaction with him.

hiking
16 days ago

Beautiful trail with lots of different terrain and views. Loved walking on the ridge! Flowers were beautiful, but seemed to be starting their decline.

hiking
16 days ago

Our favorite hike! Love the meadows with beautiful flowers... then the beautiful mountain vistas and finally the beautiful rock formations. By far out favorite hike- have a blast!!

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