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Started from the Pollock Bench TH. Great views of the monument but relatively boring trek first 1.8 miles. after that point, thus trail is amazing. lots of walking into canyons directly without switchbacks. trail is hard to identify at points up until the last 3 miles to the destination point. used my wits and the app to find the trail when needed. I'd say the trail is about 25% shady, I picked a day with good cloud cover. I opted to climb through rainbow arch, wasn't as bad as I thought and took my time as there were some solid wind gusts. Once through the arch, go to the right for one last climb and follow the trail. Nice elevation gain throughout, about 13.25 miles out and back with the shortcut. Very peaceful and serene....only saw 3 hikers. One of my all time faves so far! Only negatives: Seeing orange peels thrown on the trail and dog feces. Pick up after yourselfs jerks!

hiking
2 days ago

Beautiful destination! Hanging Lake is stunning as is Spouting Rock just above it! Definitely worth the trip! I would probably rate this trail as on the hard end of moderate. You're gaining 1000ft of elevation over the course of a mile. If you're new to hiking it's going to be a tough trail but if you're more avid, it's not terribly difficult. Beginners should take it slow, bring lots of water, and be prepared for essentially climbing a miles worth of stairs (also some heights exposure right before the lake). I'd recommend at least some level of fitness before tackling this trail as there aren't many flat areas and it can be narrow in places. Parking lot can hold about 40ish cars and I've heard can be insane during busy times so go early or during an off-time/season! It's not just an easy on-ramp/off-ramp and there's no circling around the lot waiting so parking could be really annoying when busy. There is a nice biking/walking trail one might consider if they're more fit and not wanting to deal with the trail-head parking lot!

The road is currently pretty impassible. I tried to get out there today with my 4WD Wrangler and ended up getting stuck in the deep snow along the sides. You could maybe get out there with a snowmobile or a 4WD that has chains but the snow really makes you fishtail, is slushy and deep in a lot of places, and feels like it's going to throw you off the road. The drive toward Yampa was gorgeous though so I can't wait until summer when the snow is gone to get back out here!

It was easier than I expected, these is a great place for beginners, trail is clear and accessable, bring layers of you get there early in the morning before 7-8.

Pretty steep if you're not used to the elevation, but otherwise not a terribly strenuous hike. Bottom to top in under an hour should be easy. Went up 4/15 and there was a small amount of mud and no snow left on the trail. Parking lot was half full at 9, completely packed at 10:30. Sounds like a shuttle system will be put in in May, so get your hiking in before the busy season.

hiking
5 days ago

Absolutely breathtaking!! Did this hike May of 2017. You won’t be disappointed when you get to the top and the views along the way are awesome. Go early as parking is at a shortage.

Completed April 14th. Arrived at 6pm. I wanted to complete it before the sunset so I rushed myself. Huge mistake... But still glad I did it. Although I feel extremely sore!!

I quit smoking about 3 months ago and thats a huge disadvantage on a trail like this. Its fine if you take plenty of rest, but I really pushed myself (surprised I didn't have a heart attack).

There was not a lot of traffic and when I got up there, I was the only one there!! Pretty awesome. I hated coming down almost more. You really need to take your time. I rushed myself and had a few spots where my ankle didn't hit right. Think some waking poles would definitely be a good idea. There was no snow, but a little muddy in one spot. Temperature was perfect, hight 50s.

Grrat hike, just prepare yourself. It's all up hill.

The elevation gain was more difficult than I anticipated. I had to take a lot of breaks, but there are more than enough benches, logs, and rocks to sit on. The trip was definitely worth the effort. Take the time to hike the short distance to Spouting Rock.

We arrived about 10am on a Wed and there were already several people hiking in and out. It probably took us around 3hrs to complete the whole thing, including the breaks and the stay at the top. There was very little snow in the mid section, and it was not slippery.

They're putting in regulations soon and I wanted to see it without the hassle of red tape. We drove from Denver and it was more than worth it.

Fantastic views and endless trail options.

Great facilities at the start of this hike. Wide open path along the river before turning up into the canyon hills for a steadily steep climb up rocky stairs and path over a number of bridges with benches along the way to hanging lake and spouting rock up top. Both are really awesome and unique spots to check out. Not busy at all on Friday afternoon on a cold and spring day with some flurries coming down. And that’s the waaaaay the news goes!

What can I say? One of Colorado's very best hikes. Get there early or you wont get in. Short but strenuous and incredibly beautiful. The water almost looks tropical. Expect tons of people.

The best hike to keep in shape.

One of the most special small walks around. The energy is so special; but if you get winded easily,save that energy for the first bit of the walk up as it's a bit steep in the beginning (and dependant upon season can be slick). After that it's a breeze with beautiful views and so much history. Don't just stop to say hello to Doc, go explore the rest of the cemetery as well... there are some beautiful hidden spots and memorials deep in the trees on small animal trails.

This was so beautiful. The trailhead is located off the interstate. It was pretty much full when we arrived at 10am. The trail still had some ice and packed snow in the shady areas of the trail. It is very steep. I hiked this with a 10 year old, 16 year old, 3 year old, and 1 year old. I do recommend some yak tracks due to the ice. They will be making some changes to the trail and limiting the amount of people visiting per day.

Fun little trail, good for taking friends from out of state that aren't ready for the harder trails. Beautiful photo opportunities. We went around the very end of March and the wild horses weren't only beautiful but ready to foal soon by the looks of it.

Absolutely stunning!

Do the wedding trail side first as it is a harder trek. It’s a really nice trail.

Road is not open 6 miles from the trail :( snowmobile renting was close to $200/pp. We went back into town to rent mountain bikes from UTE City Cycles who were super great, $75/half day. Unfortunately the snow was in such powder/slush conditions even their snow mountain bikes couldn’t make traction. We ended up biking up 2mi, walking/attempting bike for another 2mi, before realizing we should’ve brought more water and food. Luckily slush was good enough downhill to ride about 3 of the 4 miles back. Even the cross country skiers were unimpressed with the snow conditions! Hope this helps someone!!!

Absolutely beautiful hike.
Gets more difficult the higher you go.
We went this weekend and had two trees crossed over the path to climb over. Stunning views and creek.

They never warned me that I couldn’t drive to the beginning of the hike . We walked 4 miles on the road and until turning around after a nice guy on his snowmobile told us we wouldn’t even be able to see it today because of the clouds. Bummer, it looks beautiful.

We went with our boys, 10 & 13. It was a decent day and this hike was on our to-do list. We hiked on a Wednesday, the trail wasn't too busy, but definitely populated. Cut to the chase... the lake is amazing and worth the hike! We had read all about it. The first 1/4 mile was dry and typical mountain hiking. The middle 3/4 mile was snowy, slushy and icy in many places. Be prepared to slip and fall. The final approach was dry and a significant steep climb. When we got to the lake. It was beautiful. It started to snow a bit. We would definitely recommend it, probably rate it a five except for the season and weather in late March.

This trail is quite a bit different than I remember 28 years ago. Expect tourists. That said every person we saw on this trail was kind, friendly and respectful. The trail is very icy. Parking was challenging. The lake and sprouting rock spectacular still. There are lots of sitting benches both along the trail and up top. Changes coming to limit visitors.

Spectacular views! Great views of Glenwood and Mount Sopris. There are are a couple of different trails. This trail is very close to town. Both trails plus the road will get you to the cross at the top. The trails were a mix of snow, ice and mud. Yak tracks good but be prepared to take them on and off. It is doable without yak tracks. Lots of history.

hiking
27 days ago

Got there around 10 on Sunday morning and there was plenty of parking and small enough crowds. Coming down around 11:45 and the parking lot was full and the crowds were getting prohibitive.
There were a few spots where spikes and/or poles would have been needed for most people. There were many people that didn’t have shoes better than tennis shoes and they were sliding all over.
Caps on daily number of visitors and reservations will be implemented soon.
Very pretty, definitely wear good shoes if you go in the next few weeks.

hiking
28 days ago

I am not an experienced hiker but I loved the view at the top. No experience but since this was a February hike, here are things I didn't have that I would recommend.

1. Hiking shoes with attachable spikes. Even if it above freezing for the day, the canyon does not get much sun, and it is STEEP in many parts. Getting up is really hard when you keep slipping.
2. A pair of hiking sticks. Not just 1. That was a mistake.
3. Water. I actually brought plenty of water, but some people went without water and they wanted to borrow my water. That's fine, I don't mind helping fellow hikers but it is best to be prepared.

Unless you're an expert, the climb up takes more time than getting down. I highly recommend it. Amazing trail, HARD. But so worth it.

hiking
1 month ago

This was a nice hike last weekend. It was easy, but is made much more challenging if you take any of the other trails.
Has beautiful views and neat rock formations!

hiking
1 month ago

An easy hike that we did with the kids (6 and 2.5) yesterday. It was perfect to burn off wiggles and learn something interesting too!

Beautiful views all along the trail!

Beautiful view with the snow and lake. Highly recommend spikes.

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