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Loved this hike! Beautiful as the trail ascends through the forest. Two steep parts, one about1-2 miles in and the ascent to the lake. A small and bigger waterfall and a few stream crossings, love the water! I have two dogs and needed water in addition to my 3 liter camelback. The lake is beautiful and quiet. My dogs loved it too!

Wonderful trail! Always busy, get there early..

I love this one!! I’ve done it twice. Both times, very lightly trafficked, peaceful, serene. Beautiful flowers and breathtaking views all the while and definitely rewarding toward the top. A consistently gradual incline, not too tough!

hiking
2 days ago

Nice way to see some of CNM's formations up close. Some shade along the trail but not a ton, so lots of water and starting early are musts in August. Unfortunately, not much wildlife our morning. We started at the upper trailhead and went to Independence Monument (~3.5 miles) before turning around and heading back. Note that this trail is ~12 miles round-trip (upper to lower trailhead or vice versa, then back) and not 6.8 or 10.9 as listed here.

hiking
2 days ago

It's past peak wildflower season, but there were still some pretty blooms up near the top. Please be mindful that this trail is quite steep and rocky for the first mile and the last mile, so if you're bringing dogs or kids, make sure they have proper footwear (yes-- PLEASE put shoes on your dogs to protect their paws!!). View from the trail just before you hit the lake is gorgeous. Go early to avoid the crowds, we arrived at the TH just after 8:00 AM and snagged one of the last parking spaces. It was windy and chilly up at Herman Lake so bring layers!

hiking
2 days ago

Went hiking on 8/11 and it was great! Got there early around 6:30 and their was plenty of parking. Definitely recommend getting there early to beat the crowds and have the lake and trails to yourself. Coming down it was starting to get overly crowded. Last half mile was a little tough but well worth the views.

Don’t be scared off by the incline at the beginning. Great views throughout the entire trip, very wooded in some areas and not in others. We clocked about 7.5 miles round trip.

Beautiful views: mountain-backed lakes, harsh ridge lines, and wildflowers. Well-marked trail.

We hiked clockwise, three days, two nights -camped at Bettie Lake and Devil’s Thumb Lake, felt alone at both. Jasper Lake looked like a popular camping spot, and there was a site by the stream right before the off-shoot to Bob and Bettie Lakes if you don’t want to leave the loop. We were skinny-dipping at Devil’s Thumb and realized there was a lone fisherman across the lake getting a great show, haha, but otherwise, camping was very peaceful.

I was thankful for layers because it was really hot during the day, but surprisingly cold as soon as the sun dipped. We made Nalgene hot water bottles to supplement our 20* sleeping bags.

We hiked mid-week (Aug 8-10) and saw more hikers and trail-runners than backpackers. Some people struggling, but then also an older couple of women crushing it, and a Dad with two young kids. I’m a beginner with a heavy pack and ended each day smiling.

Brought my 35lb pup - she wore off her front pads chasing marmot in the rocks... which wouldn’t have been a problem if I had kept her on leash. She loved it. Didn’t see many (any?) dogs out towards the peak, but lots at the trailhead. Leash definitely required for the first bit.

Elevation is no joke, but plenty of places to refill water, so keep drinking!!

Side note: we stopped in Ned on the way home and ate at the Thai restaurant - killer $10 lunch deal!

Arrived at 5:15 am on Saturday and there were a lot of cars parked on the side of the road but still plenty of space. People can't seem to agree on which way to go- I decided to go counterclockwise and I'm very glad I did.

I have been up to Jasper Lake a couple of times but this is the first time I tried the loop. In my opinion the north side of the loop is more scenic. It's best to do it in the morning when the lighting is better and you still have energy. Also I like steep inclines more than steep declines as they're more exciting and less stressful on the knees. Saw a bull moose about halfway up to Jasper Lake. That was pretty terrifying as he was only 25 yards or so off of the trail hidden behind some trees. I snapped a quick picture and got out of there.

The trail is pretty easy. The distance is the hard part. I was feeling pretty haggard on the last 3-4 miles. Got back to the parking lot a little before 3PM. I probably could of finished at 2 if I hadn't of taken so many pictures.

Overall an awesome hike! My favorite one so far

Great hike, some steep parts, but I really noticed the incline more on the way down due to the trail being a bit loose. Great views though, lots of wild flowers, pretty lake at the end. Parking g lot fills up real fast, got there at 8am and it was already overflowing to side streets.

hiking
4 days ago

Definitely a challenging trail. I’m in good shape but being from a lower elevation, I felt pretty winded at times. With breaks I still took about 4 hours with a half hour break at the peak. The view was worth it for sure. Highly recommend getting an early start since the trail is in the full sun at the beginning.

Great hike. Short trip to Beaver meadow and picnic shelters then tons of longer options and gorgeous views! great spot.

hiking
5 days ago

Awesome hike. I would rate this hike as difficult. I did it as a youth more than 40 years ago and it hard then. I am 57 years old my wife and I did this beautifull hike today. it took us 6.5 hours to complete. We took our time a we were rewarded with breath taking views just above timberline. I would highly recommend this lightly traveled trail.

This hike borders on moderate to hard. A fairly mild incline with a few steeper sections. We have run into a large bear on this trail so be alert and be prepared for what to do. We had to turn around the last time when the big guy would not back off and grant us passage.

backpacking
6 days ago

Backpacked in to Helms lake 8/6 - 8/7. A bit marshy getting around helms lake but the trail was in good condition and relatively easy to follow otherwise. Lost a blue nalgene somewhere in the helms lake area.

backpacking
6 days ago

Awesome trail with dispersed camping spots easy to find. Light elevation gain for first 2.5 miles and then it increases significantly thereafter. Excellent camping right after the first creek crossing at 2 miles in. There are flattened logs to walk across so no getting wet during the creek crossings. We went further and camped just short of Helms Lake (5.25 miles in) in the tree-covered area. Wonderful views and a few dispersed campsites easy to find.

I love this trail. beautiful views, not too far from golden.

hiking
6 days ago

I took a friend from out of town on this trail on Tuesday and we were almost completely alone. We saw one other couple on mile one then no one for the entire rest of it. It was great, the views form the pass were awesome. We sat on a rock and ate lunch, you have a great view of Mount Evans from there. The 4 solid miles of climbing wasn't the easiest but certainly not too bad. I took someone who lives at sea level and he did just fine with it.

Very busy, however, well worth the trek.

The views down by the lakes were incredible. The beginning of the hike is not as scenic, but was worth the wait.

hiking
9 days ago

Beautiful trail. Steady incline but extremely enjoyable because of the meadows and flowing streams. We did get caught in a hail storm on our way back It was scary but memorable ! Carry a jacket just incase.

Hiked this with my cousin who was visiting from Boston on 7/30/18. It is definitely longer than 6 miles, but we also chose to wander down the path to the left once we got to the lake at the top, so that added on mileage. Beautiful hike (minus the traffic noise the first mile and last mile). Great having access to streams for dogs. View from the top is very pretty and well worth it. 2nd half of hike is fully exposed, so make sure to bring layers and sunscreen, bugs weren’t bad. Not a difficult climb, just long, well worth it! Took us about 3 hours total, give or take, stopped for lots of pictures and lunch at top. Didn’t start hike until 9:45 and we were fine w parking and weather, but it was also a Monday.

hiking
10 days ago

This is a great hike. I would call this the long slog to the top. We took Mesa via Towhee to Shadow Canyon to Bear Peak. Really beautiful views at all levels of the hike. Ran into rain/hail going up and waited it out. it cleared for a bit and by the time we reached the saddle more fronts we coming in. The Summit scramble was quick and we got pounded again with hail/rain coming back down to the Saddle. Overall...it was an awesome hike with wonderful view. took us 7.5 hours round trip. Most of that was due to several breaks and a couple good pauses for sheltering from the hail.

Rough, hard and aggressive trail both up and down. Not for a beginner...a lot of straight up with steep switchbacks. If you’re a moderate hiker at least 4 hours to summit peak. Recommend sturdy hiking boots and trekking poles. Navigation is a little tough...follow cairns higher up and pay attention to surroundings as there is little signage.

This was one of my favorite hikes since moving to Colorado. I got to the trailhead at 6am and had the lake to myself. If I had arrived any later, that would not have been the case. The first .75 miles kicks your butt, then the last .5 miles on the way up give you round two. But this hike offers both open meadows and then plenty of tree cover too. It was a perfect balance.

Great walk

One of my go-to faves, especially when preparing for the next 14er.

hiking
12 days ago

Easy for kids and fun for the whole family!

hiking
12 days ago

I hiked this trail last weekend, for the first time. In my opinion, it is moderate/hard because it gets steep at the top. Despite earlier reviews, the saddle is about 6 miles from the trailhead. I hike another 1.5 miles down toward the lakes but had to turn around due to time. The descent from the saddle can be pretty tricky at certain points.

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