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The roads are open and it’s so beautiful there!

hiking
1 day ago

Great hike and a beautiful view once you get to the top!

Climbed Gray’s Peak today and didn’t continue on because the clouds rolled in. It was a tough hike but very clear trail.

Truthfully, this hike isn’t that special and the experience is dulled by all the folks near the lake this time of year. Look for other hiking opportunities from the trailhead: I.e Bear Lake.

One of my favorites especially in the fall. Beautiful grove of aspens toward the top.

Took a few friends here who have never been backpacking at it was great. Easy in and out and they loved it. The lake was great. I wouldnt really recommend trying to hike Mt. Yale from this location. It was all bouldering and sheer cliffs with no trail. That's not to say it wasnt do-able. We made it to the top in about 3.5 hours, and had to scramble down bc of an incoming thunderstorm. Overall, it was a great introductory trip and we were able to get some adventure in trying to conquere Yale.

hiking
3 days ago

We never saw any signs for this on the road until the actual trail head. Really enjoyed it though. Hit the trail about 1pm and saw pretty heavy traffic early on, but thinned out later, everyone was super nice. Had 4 or 5 creek crossing and several river/creek access points prior to lake access which our dog enjoyed. Road in and out made me a little nervous but was totally doable.

The road to the trailhead is definitely crazy - our 4x4 Pathfinder took it like a champ! But, you definitely need a 4x4 vehicle to get through.
We pulled into the lot at 5am on Wednesday and there were only a few cars at the top parking lot.

This was my first 14er and it was the hardest hike I’ve ever done in my life! Definitely worth it! We had our 7 year old with us... and it was pretty difficult for him. We all summited Grays and enjoyed the breathtaking views. We didn’t summit Torrey’s. One was enough for us.
We took a lot of breaks with our son - it took us about 6/7 hours to reach the summit. We made it back down to the parking lot in about 2 hours.

What an amazing hike! It’s a tough one for sure. The road is definitely scary, but we took it pretty slow. My Jeep Patriot did great. Got to the TH at 530am on a Wednesday morning still spots in the parking lot, not too busy on the trail, was perfect. Took 8 hours with a lot of breaks. Did Grays and Torreys, worth every second!

on Parmalee Trail Loop

hiking
5 days ago

I did this in early Spring and it was a bit windy, but nice!

I arrived on a Monday evening around 6:30pm - there were 2 other cars by the trailhead, by 10pm the parking lot was about half full and when I headed out at 6:30am the next morning the lot only had a few spots left but there was still another 8-10 spots on the side of the road by the beginning of the trail. There are a few sporadically positioned camping spots by the trailhead with firepits - I counted 5 but there may be more. I highly recommend arriving the night before and sleeping in your car or camping as it takes the stress out of wondering whether there will be a place to park once you finally get up the dirt road. Plus you get to see some amazing stars and get to start your climb at whatever time you choose.

The road is as described by many others - rough. I have a 4x4 Jeep and found it tricky in places and slow going 5-10mph for most of the ride to avoid damaging my vehicle. I did see a Prius and several low clearance 2 wheels up at the trailhead which I would not advise unless you're in a rental or just don't care about wrecking your car (or inconveniencing others if you get stuck).

The hike is fun but challenging. I'm in my early 40s - active, above average fitness and live in Denver so not coming directly from sea-level and found it tough above 13k. There's a lot of rock and scree. The views are worth it. I did Torey's first by veering right where the trail splits and then Gray's - which seemed to be against most of the traffic so I'm glad I did. Overall it was busy (especially for a Tuesday morning) but not to the point where that affected the pace of my climb or my enjoyment of it - just plenty of people to say hello to.

Time wise I got up to the top of Torey's in 2-1/2 hours, it then takes about 45 mins to go down, traverse and summit Gray's. I took my time at the top of Gray's and came down fairly casually. I was back down at my vehicle in 5 hours 40 mins (8.6 miles, 3,107ft of elevation gain).

The weather was great - clear all morning. It was chilly at the top of Torey's so I was glad for a nano-puff and pair of lightweight gloves.

It's a fun, challenging hike - that will take your breath away in more ways than one.

To reiterate others' comments, the road is an absolute mess -- without a SUV, pickup, or Jeep, there's no way you'll be able to drive to the upper (summer) trailhead. We managed to get about half a mile in a Honda Civic before parking on the shoulder and walking the rest of the way (~2.5 miles). By 7:00 AM on a Sunday, the parking lot was completely full. Don't expect much solitude, especially on the weekend - at least a few hundred people summitted the same day we did.

All that said, the hike itself was a lot of fun, though certainly difficult even after a few days of acclimation at RMNP. I'd recommend doing Grays first, going down the saddle, and then heading up to Torreys. Grays is all steep switchbacks; from the saddle, Torreys is a short but very steep climb. We thought the views were slightly better from Grays. Despite being rained on, hailed on, and briefly snowed on (yes, in August), the trails themselves weren't difficult to follow. Definitely a good experience for our first 14ers!

First, the road: NEVER AGAIN! What an awful beast of a road. I think I have PTSD from driving those 3 miles from hell. (And yes, I was in a high-clearance 4x4 truck.)

Next, the trail: Just wonderful all around. Mostly moderate in difficulty but hard in some places. The trail up to Torreys is steep and a lung-buster. Hiking poles highly recommended for the descent.

hiking
7 days ago

Lovely trail that follows rushing water up a canyon with nice aspen stands. There were a few mountain bikers on the trail when we were hiking it, but it seems a little dicey to hike if there are dirt bikers riding it. The listing has since been updated, but it used to say it was under 4 miles out and back. The trail actually goes almost 8 miles until it hits the continental divide/monarch pass trail. Wrote All Trails support after bumping into a lady at the trail head who looked concerned and said her kids were hiking on it way longer than she had expected. All trails quickly updated it to the full 13.5mi total out and back that it should be if you take it all the way to the CDT. Thanks AllTrails support! :)

backpacking
7 days ago

I just got back from a backpack trip to Kroenke Lake August 12th. kroenke is no longer the pristine alpine lake it once was. it is over used and trampled with little fire wood. People are camping and building fire rings within a few feet of the lake. What is more distressing is that there is used toilet paper everywhere in the forested areas along the east and south sides of the Lake. When did the hiking/backpacking community decide its ok to just leave their toilet paper behind? Come On People! Its easy to pack out your toilet paper with your other trash, or burn it in your fire pit. If you love the outdoors enough to drive to a trailhead and hike somewhere, you should care enough not to degrade the environment and diminish the experience of others.

Fairly easy hike. Nicely shaded.

This is definitely a very popular trailhead. Arrived at 445 am and the lower lot had cars parked, we found a spot on the road near the upper parking lot cause it was full. The road up was sketchy for sure. Highly recommend you use a 4 x 4. I have a 4Runner and made it no problem, but there was a Prius 2 people in front of us that got stuck a couple times. Be smart people! The trail itself was nice but crowded.

shoutout to Mike for giving us a ride up to the trailhead. TIL what altitude sickness is. View from the top is 11/10.

Great hike. The people that climb these peaks are so pleasant to be around. It's almost like a family thing. Awesome views from either peak.

Arrived at 5:25am in a Friday and there was 2-3 parking spots left but when lot is full people just park on side of the road. Also noticed people parking just past the trailhead as the road does extend a bit further. As a flatlander making first climb at this altitude it was hard. It made it up in 3:15 with frequent breaks.

Great hike. Quite busy on Friday and the road up takes a bit of time but it is not bad. Outback made it up easily. Went up Gray’s first, awesome view! Both peaks were great, easy to keep on the trail. I could have used 2 fewer miles on the way back! The beginning of the trail is pretty, but long. Enjoy!

great hike beautiful day. 4x4 drive up to parking lot. arrive by 5am

it was a fun trail. the road was definitely rough heed the 4x4 sign

great hike, not many people

For me it was hard

I can’t believe this is rated moderate, hardest thing I’ve ever done coming from Florida haha. Absolutely breathtaking views, so worth the altitude sickness.

Grays and Torreys were a great hike in July. We arrived about 500a on a Saturday and parked on the toad just short of the parking lot. Started our hike around 515a and we were back to the car around 1100. Took a short break on top of each peak. We took a right at the fork and went up Torreys first. I think this was the best and easiest approach. It was a bit more steep on your initial hike, but made it much more pleasurable to huddle down Torreys and then have the easy hike up to Grays. We then came back down the back side and through the saddle instead of all the switchbacks.

Consumed about 2 liters of water and a sandwich.

Beautiful day, a little cold and windy at times.

North to South is best way to attack it if going out and coming back. 70% of effort is first half. Nobody on this trail on a weekday.

Hiked Torrey’s this morning and it was beautiful. I was very worried about the drive up because of all the reviews on here, however, the drive is fine. It’s bumpy and should be taken slow (we went 4mph up and down) but very do-able. I wish I would have brought my dog. I drive a Ford Escape so everyone can compare their car. :)

Hike was awesome and it was a beautiful day!

Arrived at 6 am on a Thursday in a 4-WD Ford F-150. The road up is extremely bumpy but the F-150 handled without a problem. At 6 am there was 4-5 parking spots remaining.

Took us 2 hours to get to the top of Grays. You have cell phone service at the top. Probably spent half an hour at the top snacking and chatting with fellow hikers. Most people like my group were not from Colorado.

Then headed across the saddle to Torreys it took about an hour. You really have to watch your footing going down. Then the ascent up torreys is more steep then Grays. Spent 30-45 minutes at top of Torreys

Took about 1.5-2 hours to descend and get back to trailhead. The ride down the bumpy road is worse going down.

Overall a fun hike that can be achieved by anyone with a decent level of fitness and who does not get altitude sickness.

Everyone from my party is from Florida and arrived in Colorado on Tuesday. Nobody had any major problems except for a minor headache.

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