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Great hike with lots of good stopping points! Mostly shaded which I can appreciate! Dogs were all on leash which was impressive. The view from the top was amazing & the stairs were not bad at all!! Coming from a 6 month pregnant lady!!

Beautiful hike up to a mountain lake and you can make it longer by hiking along glacier which opens up to multiple other trails. Very rocky and steep in areas which would make me want to say this is an easy to moderate hike but great for out of town guests to get beautiful views without being too rigorous.

Nice easy hike for flatlanders.

This is my favorite spot. Hiking up to the top is work but once you get there the view from the lookout tower is amazing and worth it. If you are not use to the altitude make sure to take many stops and bring lots of water. You will never regret doing this hike.

mountain biking
3 days ago

August 18, mountain bikes the trail with my 13 year old. We loved the trail, absolutely beautiful and fun. We are from Michigan so this was definitely different than what we are use too. It was a blast and I would recommend it to anyone.

Really cool trail! Especially if you’re looking for a hike that isn’t going to take all day. The fire tower was amazing, the views were insane! My boyfriend discovered that he was terrified of heights but definitely worth the climb! Haha.

This was an absolutely amazing hike! I only gave it 4 stars instead of 5 for the following reasons:
1. The hike is listed as easy which it definitely was not, I would say it is more moderate and that is due to the trail being super rocky, picture a river that dried up, that’s what the trail was. But if u can handle that than it is totally worth going, the views r just spectacular all around you! I highly recommend continuing past the lake to where the snow is, the views only get better and it was not hard to hike up there. 2. We got a lil lost on the way back because the trail is not clearly marked, good thing we had the map from this app and a friendly person to point us in the right direction.

A perfect hike for a time period of about 2 hours! Amazing views at the top! Have hiked this trail multiple times and it never disappoints!

Great short hike to a beautiful view. Would highly recommend bringing visitors here to show, great views and easy enough up and down while truly being in the mountains. Definitely great for the dogs as well.

Nice trail close to town with rocks and nature. Very enjoyable.

Quick and fun. Did it with my nephews - both 7 years old. They enjoyed the Tower and talking with the Ranger at the top. The views are fantastic.

completed 08.11.18, all gates open and water crossings down to a few inches.

If you are looking for a challenge you will find it! narrow, long, steep and full of obstacles. I ended up with some new scars on my skid plates but with my ego intact. signed the guest book at the empire Hilton. -remember as you go up that you have to hit all the same stuff coming back down!

'13 Wrangler sport, 3.5-inch AEV kit, 35's aired down to 11, novice driver.

What a gem so close to Denver and I-70! We hiked on a Sunday morning in August. I hadn’t expected all those wildflowers in August—so lovely! This was a short hike we planned for the morning-we had to travel on to Salida that same day, so the 3 of us allowed just enough time to hike at our own pace, touch the glacier, enjoy the views, and get back to the car within 3 hours. I am tempted to rate this as 5 stars except for: toward the top, so many hikers have made branching trails that we weren’t sure which path to take to reach the lake (a helpful hiker passing us said: don’t worry, they all lead to the lake); parking was really crowded with few options; and the main parking lot was really rocky and our “standard rental” car bottomed out and scratched the undercarriage (thankfully not noted by the rental people). The views from the toe of the glacier are just stunning, so we didn’t try to go higher up the rocky scree slope—that looked like it would take more time than we had.

Perfect for a quick, easy, dog-friendly day hike. There were a lot of great areas to pause and soak in the view or just hang out for a bit.

Awesome ash trail! Bring $5 for parking

Ok for kids? Have twin 9 y/o’s not in climbing shape yet from move

This is an easy but beautiful hike! We love taking our dog on this one!

We hiked this on the morning of 8/9/18, leaving the smaller parking lot at 8:45am. The trail to the lake is almost entirely rock; I’m guessing this was once a river bed, at least during the snow melt season in eons past. The lake, mountainside behind it, and the snowfield are stunning. We set off higher, and quickly lost the trail. There is a waterfall just below the glacier, and we ended up following some others up across the water below that - as in, through the water. This meant we were completely off the trail on the other side, but we stuck to other descriptions of staying to the right side of the glacier as we ascended. This was really tricky. We were just feet from the edge of the glacier, and the terrain is a mixture of scree and a variety of sizes of rock. Really slow going, lots of slipping on the scree. After about a half hour of this, we observed two people ahead of us walk across the snow (which eventually narrows to nothing as you proceed) and climb up the opposite side to a trail up there. We did likewise, and finally found ourselves on a real trail. Furthermore, at that height, we could see an actual trail on the side we’d been on, which wasn’t visible to us when we were lower. We continued on to see James Peak. It became obvious that unless we continued straight for an uncertain distance that all we would see was the top of the two mountains. At 2.20 miles from the start, we turned around. The trail we were then on was going to take us to the left side of the glacier, which then ends at the glacier, so we knew we had to cross back over and get on the real trail there. We skirted along the top of the snowfield, lots of scree there and steep, although not any long distance down. We got onto the actual trail, and picked our way down as there is still plenty of scree there too. We got back to the lake area, and found the official trail which, surprise, does not walk you directly through the waterfall stream. The rest was easy enough.

This is lengthy to let others know: 1) that the trail just up past the lake isn’t necessarily easy to find; 2) the trail farther up from the lake can be truly difficult to find (we saw several people ascending the way we’d gone); 3) there is no actual end point on this trail nor any “wow” view up higher; 4) so. much. shifting. scree, so be prepared for that.

We got to our car at noon, and the large parking lot appeared full as we drove past it. There were tons of people. It’s very popular.

AllTrails rates this as Easy. However, we have a book of hikes that rates it as Moderate. Our hike was a challenge, certainly not Easy.

I loved the views this trail had to offer with the lake and surrounding mountains. I will say though that it was probably my least favorite trail to hike that I’ve done so far, and I’ve done many trails including 14ers. The reason I didn’t like this one was because of the gravel when you go to hike to the top of the glacier. There is way too much sliding around and stressing out trying to figure out the best place to put your feet without falling. I was not a huge fan of that. Other than that, it was really pretty, and if you hike to one of the trails to the right of the glacier, there were a ton of wildflowers and even more pretty views. I’m glad I did it, but I probably wouldn’t care to go back because of the rocks and sketchy trail to the top.

hiking
11 days ago

Went up there with friends and had an absolutely amazing time. The lake and glacier together looked beautiful. We hiked all the way up the glacier and to where it ended. From there we went back and climbed the row of mountains going back down on your right side. At the top there were many stunning views, where we took many pictures. We went down a small trail on the right side of the of the mountain going back to the lake. Everything was amazing and I would highly recommend going there. However, going up the glacier can be very slick. I would bring spikes to put on your hiking shoes! Makes going up it a whole lot easier.

One of my favorites. This can feel longer than it actually is. Lots of hikers today, and climbing to the fire tower is worth it!

Hiked this trail on a Sunday afternoon and didn’t think it was too busy. Well maintained trail, though the gravel can be a little loose in areas. Great view at the top where you can see 100 miles in any direction. We did the hike in about 2 hours, not counting the time we hung out at the top enjoying the view. Be prepared to drive on some bumpy roads to get to the trailhead.

hiking
12 days ago

Absolutely spectacular sights and a pretty short hike.

Good hike up, had a lot of fun looking at the glacier and walking on it. My group and I went cliff jumping and had a blast!!

nice view from there.

hiking
13 days ago

I had a great time hiking to the top and an even better time sliding down the glacier! Now, that being said, my phone fell out of my pocket. It's an iphone, unlocked, etc. If a kind person could return it to a Verizon store between St. Mary's and Denver (or in Denver if you're coming to the city), that would be much appreciated. People in my contacts to contact if you get a hold of the phone are Captain, Rachael or Kayla.

Have to drive on a rough road to get there, but it's worth it at the top. Make sure you stop in and talk to Billy Ellis!

I hiked this on a Wednesday (8/1/18): no problems parking and not too crowded. The fire lookout and stairs make for an exhilarating and unique payoff for the relatively short but steady climb. It was 3 hours round-trip for us. Really nice.

nature trips
15 days ago

Great easy trail and great for walking dogs because there are several side trails to choose from that get you all to the same place. There is a LEASH LAW that people refuse to obey so it was nice to have an option to be on a side trail away from the idiots that don’t know how to use a leash. Glacier lake was beautiful, get there early to find parking.

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