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
10 hours ago

Hiked this trail yesterday evening. Encountered a few slick areas, but very manageable, even without spikes. Took 2 hours there and back.

Well it was super icy today but it sure was easy if you have spikes on your shoes! Slippery for sure but if you’ve done it before you know to just keep pushing. If you haven’t done it before.. well, keep pushing! Beautiful fun tough work out. I always take the 1st and 2nd loop, i even took my parents from Texas in today and we finished it in 4 hours... beautiful in the snow if you ever wanna get it :)

Great hike. More challenging than I thought especially attempting it immediately upon arriving from the east coast. Well worth it once you get to the arch.

hiking
2 days ago

Great hike, but beware that it is very slippery and icy with the recent snow. I underestimated how slippery it would be on the way down and I fell several times. Definitely come prepared and watch the weather before you go!

hiking
3 days ago

Beautiful day on the trail on 10/14. Lots of fresh powder came in overnight. Some areas were quite icy, but it was very manageable if you come prepared and aren't hiking in sneakers. We saw less than 10 people total during our 3 hours out. Views were limited by the snow clouds, but it was still spectacular!

hiking
4 days ago

There are many routes to the top! be aware when you finish the switch backs that run doing the creek there is a false summit. Go past the trail marker and you'll have to head down for a little bit before a short climb back up to reach the Arch.

It was beautiful but very icy! The whole trail was nothing but ice. Need some yak tracks and hiking poles. Went on 10/12 and it was very crowded on the way back down. Worth the views but definitely would wait until the summer to do it again.

Challenging for a recreational hiker & worth it - beautiful views, the arch did not disappoint!

Lovely hike close to Denver. Did it counterclockwise in 3 hours (a moderate pace for the first half and slow for the latter half). Parking was easy at 9a on Saturday and there were a nice number of people— enough to not feel alone if something happened, but not busy. Very peaceful.

nice short hike

For someone from Indiana this was definitely more moderate than easy.

hiking
5 days ago

Gorgeous views! The journey was through snow and ice for the entire hike. Would recommend traction and waterproof shoes. Sunny and clear Friday oct 12 when we hiked but very windy, especially at the edge of the lakes!

hiking
5 days ago

Really beautiful hike with flowers and an amazing view, very well worth it. make sure to bring lots of water!!

hiking
5 days ago

Beautiful hike as expected but extremely windy! We started around 8:30 and the parking lot was pretty empty. Def would recommend wearing micro spikes because a good portion of the trail is very icy and also waterproof shoes! The wind was blowing so hard at Dream Lake I was sliding across the ice! It was pretty with the snow but hard to see the mountains. The trial was very crowded on our way back down so still would recommend going early.

hiking
6 days ago

It was pretty chilly, but still beautiful! Took us about 3 hours with a lot of photo stops. Unfortunately we couldn’t see much of the mountains, but we got some pretty amazing photos of snow-laden trees being reflected in the waters. It was by far the busiest trail that we did all weekend, I can’t imagine what it would be like during peak season! We went early (around 8am) and didn’t have issues with parking. The lot was filled by the time we got back

Awesome hike. Trail is well traveled and moderately difficult in some areas.

on Emerald Lake Trail

hiking
7 days ago

One of my favorite hikes ever, even with the crowds. A must see during winter, too!

Did this hike yesterday in the middle of a snow shower, and it was really nice! Like others, we missed the turnoff for the falls, but found it after finding the sign on our way back down. Apparently, we hiked nearly 1/2 a mile past it. My phone was acting up, so I wasn't able to add a waypoint to the map.

That being said, this is a really nice hike. It would be great for out-of-towners, since the elevation gain is very managable. I don't know if it was the weather, or that it was Wednesday, but we ran into more bags of dog poop than people. Seriously folks, clean up after yourselves!

hiking
10 days ago

The arch itself is beautiful. But it is clearly not a trail that deserves a "hard" rating. Most of the hikers on this trail were in casual wear and made it to the top. We saw more than one woman carrying her purse and wearing flats. If you have the gumption and the time, you will make it to the top.

11 days ago

Amazing trail! Why is everyone complaining about the crowd. If I was the only one out there struggling, is it even really worth it?

on Royal Arch Trail

hiking
11 days ago

A great workout, will challenge most hikers. Worth the climb, the views are amazing! Wear proper hiking shoes and take water. Did this hike with my daughter in law and we enjoyed it.

Gorgeous Trail. Took us a bit longer than what some other people described about 3.5 hours, but we stopped a decent amount to enjoy the peace of nature. We went during a weekday and only passed 5-6 other hikers the entire time. I think we did the trail backwards as all the signs are to for doing beaver brook then Chavez but we did Chavez first. I would suggest doing Beaverbrook first as Chavez had a lot of scrambling rocks which would have been more enjoyable going up.

I’m a seasoned hiker and this trail kicked my butt! The arch is beautiful. Would’ve given 5 stars if it weren’t for the crowd (6:30am on a Friday...)

You get a little bit of everything with this hike!!! Did this with our energetic pup and we all loved it! Went counterclockwise like some of the reviews suggested and although the last stretch is uphill, I think it was the right move. Highly recommend!

Great but strenuous hike!

hiking
14 days ago

Yes, this is an absurdly popular hike, but that is for a very good reason. The views are just absolutely spectacular, and you get an awful lot of scenic beauty for relatively little effort. The whole thing is uphill, but it is not bad at all. In fact, you are doing it wrong if you zip through it, you should really stop frequently and just enjoy the amazing views that await around almost every corner. We did it on a weekday in October, hitting the trail head about 8:30 and that was definitely about as late as you want to arrive. The way out was fairly uncrowded, but the later part of the way back was just nuts. Near the end, we probably passed 100 people headed towards where we had just come from. It is easily the busiest trail I've ever been on, and as it starts to fill up, you get the more casual hikers, including loud teenagers, the families with lots of kids yelling etc. that really detracts from the serenity of the experience. We got to enjoy most of the hike, but had we started at 10AM I think we would have hated it. So this is one where you should start by about 7:30 if you want to avoid feeling like you went to Disneyland instead of RMNP. But don't let the crowds deter you, just start early.

hiking
14 days ago

Boy what a workout. Intense hike with some incredible views towards the top. While the trail can be busy (we saw no less than 30 people on a random Thursday), it is really peaceful and tranquil along the trail. Hard but totally worth it.

So amazing, but the wind almost blew my trailface off! Cray cray! Don't forget a jacket

One of our favorite hikes. Lots of people and parking sucks, but hike is wonderful!

hiking
15 days ago

Beautiful views and lakes!

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