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    Caraline Bianchetto Chase reviewed Lake Isabelle Trail

    almost 2 years ago

    I'm bummed I haven't ventured to this area sooner ! Easy hike with instant views. Before opening up to the lake the trail goes in and out of shade which was pleasant on the hot day. This hike had views, flowers, and a waterfall... it was a success

    Caraline Bianchetto Chase added CO

    almost 3 years ago

    Caraline Bianchetto Chase reviewed Odessa Lake Trail

    almost 3 years ago

    I didn't make it down to Odessa Lake, so this is why I titled it as Odessa Gorge. Since I have been Odessa Lake from the Fern Lake TH, and wanted to explore Lake Helene and Two Rivers Lake, I turned around once I got half-way down Odessa Gorge.

    This hike was more amazing than I had expected! Once I got to the the Junction for the Flattop Mountain trail, it was all-new territory for me. From here the trail begins to level out and is so pleasant. You are near tree-line, and the trail crosses through open, wildflower specked fields. In front of you are the mountains and snowfields that you will soon be walking along through Odessa Gorge. The morning I went had ominous clouds hovering, and the wind was whipping so that I felt I was crossing the Misty Mountains!!

    But before you turn into the gorge you pass the Sourdough backcountry sites on the right side of the trail. About a 5- minute walk you'll notice spur trails on your left with slight views of water- the first one is Two Rivers Lake, and Lake Helene is after it.

    Then, I turned, and Odessa Gorge opened up, and there at the bottom is Odessa Lake. Gorgeous (heh heh heh). But it really took my breath away. There are no more tress around you as thr trail is cut into the rock. You are now hiking down alongside the mountains you were hiking towards for so long, and on this day they were sheer and cold, and majestic. It was one of those hikes were you take a step and stop to look all around you, feel insignificant, take another step, and repeat. It was at this moment when I stopped and pondered if I should do the loop and take the shuttle from Fern LAke back to Bear LAke... but Lake Helene!! I turned around and found the spur trail to the water.

    I could have spent a whole afternoon exploring Lake Helen. It is under a small snowfield, and the hills behind it kept calling to me. But I was cold and alone, and I love leaving new things to explore for next time! So I contented myself with circling the lake, navigating the lush green grass and flowing water at timberline,and trying to pick a path through the krumholz. There was even one area with a killer overlook to Odessa lake. I only saw one other group of people here, and as far as I know, they never saw me sitting against a tree munching my granola bar.

    I went back out onto to main trail and eventually came upon the spur trail for Two Rivers Lake. Once I got to the lake I realized I could have easily gotten there from Lake Helene. Oh well, for next time! This lake had a bunch of big boulders lying in it, and that part of it reminded me a bit of Lake Haiyaha, but the shoreline is way more accessible. Again, I saw no one actually come down here although I could hear all the later hikers on their way to Odessa. After pausing here for a few minutes I turned, picked my way back to the trail, and began the journey home, dreaming about my wonderful finds awaiting me at Esh's!

    Caraline Bianchetto Chase reviewed Flattop Mountain Trail

    almost 4 years ago

    Wow, this hike has amazing views the entire way up! I can't wait to do it again!

    Caraline Bianchetto Chase reviewed Thunder Lake Trail

    almost 4 years ago

    This was my third time to Wild Basin- one failed attempt at Sandbeach Lake due to snow, and one failed trip to Ouzel Lake due to the bridge being out since May, 2013 (we just went to Ouzel Falls instead).

    Thunder Lake itself is a rewarding destination, framed by Tanima Peak and Boulder-Grand Pass (which does offer dramatic views, as another reviewer said!). The backdrop of the mountain is so close and abrupt that it kind of surprised me! Pictures do not do it justice. Wildflowers dotted the landscape all the way to the west side of the lake, along the trail. While I am so happy to have hiked here, the reason for the three stars is that it was... kind of boring to get to.

    The St. Vrain creek was so enjoyable to walk next to, and the valley was pretty, but you are mostly in the trees, especially once you get to the primitive campsite spur trail. However, besides the length, I didn't find the trail to Thunder Lake to be too strenuous. Yes, there were some switchbacks, but not many, and there were many flat parts of the trail for resting.

    Again, I did very much enjoy this trail, and do not at all regret hiking it, but compared to other trails I have hiked, I gave it three stars. I would like to come back to this area in a few weeks when the aspen turn yellow.

    Caraline Bianchetto Chase completed Thunder Lake Trail

    almost 4 years ago

    Caraline Bianchetto Chase reviewed Brown's Lake Trail

    almost 4 years ago

    This hike took us only 4.5 hours (half an hour for exploring the lakes), and the views on the way to the lakes are amazing! We went on a Saturday, and we saw a bunch of people on the trail, most of the packing in.

    There are two ridges to go over, so unfortunately, a lot of elevation is lost. Once you get to timberline the views open up and stay amazing pretty much the entire way. There is still plenty of below tree-line hiking too, so you aren't completely exposed the entire time, which was great. This trail might be more like moderate-strenuous, but it is so beautiful, it's worth it!

    Caraline Bianchetto Chase completed Brown's Lake Trail

    almost 4 years ago

    Caraline Bianchetto Chase reviewed Bridal Veil Falls

    almost 5 years ago

    This is a pretty easy, low key hike. When we went int he winter there wasn't too much snow until we hit the wooded part of the trail, and then it got slick. The falls were frozen, but the icy spray frozen mid-air looked awesome, and the view from the top was even better!

    Caraline Bianchetto Chase completed Emerald Lake Trail

    almost 5 years ago

    Caraline Bianchetto Chase reviewed Haynach Lakes Trail

    almost 5 years ago

    Getting to these lakes definitely requires staying at one of the backcountry sites overnight. We stayed at Lower Granite Falls, and went to the lakes from there. The turnoff for this trail was tricky, because the sign only indicates the Haynach camp site, and not that the trail continues on the turnoff itself. The rest of the way to the lakes seemed farther than our maps indicated, and after a steep incline the trail more or less evened out into lush fields, which eventually led to the lakes. When we were there in August no one else was around, and there were still some snowfields around the first lake. While they were nice to see, I feel like there are more picturesque lakes in the park that take less effort to get to.

    Caraline Bianchetto Chase reviewed Black Lake Trail

    almost 5 years ago

    What a gorgeous hike! From Mills Lake on, the trail grows lusher and greener as you approach Black Lake. There are various waterfalls immediately along the trail and some in the distance, and the wildflowers are amazing in the summer. Even though the hike is pretty long, I thought it was moderate, and although we were camping at the backcountry site, I still think this would make a great day hike.

    Caraline Bianchetto Chase reviewed Emmaline Lake Trail

    almost 5 years ago

    I loved this hike, although next time I would pack in and spend the night, then hike to the lakes in the morning. This trail is pretty remote, and while we didn't see any wildlife, there were plenty of signs of them. The last mile you have to basically just keep your eyes peeled for cairns at all times- they' were easy spot as long as you were looking for them, and we climbed to treeline in no time. The first lake is Cirque Lake with beautiful blue and green hues, and then a short scramble over a boulder brings you to Lake Emmaline. Both are very beautiful and serene, as the trail usage is light.

    Caraline Bianchetto Chase reviewed Mills Lake

    almost 5 years ago

    After hiking this trail twice last year, I knew I had to go back again. This summer we snagged two nights at the Glacier Gorge backcountry site and even with 35 pounds on my back, I still loved coming to this lake. My favorite part of the hike is when the trail finally levels out and the trail is on a ledge along the gorge. As you approach the lake, you can almost feel like something spectacular is going to happen! This is the hike I recommend the most to people, and is my favorite in the park so far!

    Caraline Bianchetto Chase reviewed Crosier Mountain Trail

    almost 5 years ago

    So, there's about 3 different TH's for this hike, and we chose the Garden Gate TH. While the views from the top of Mummy Range were awesome, this hike kicked our asses! There are a few ridges that you go up, then back down. So, unlike most trails where you're rewarded with downhill on the way back, this one has as much uphill as the way in. I would like to try the other trails to the top, because the view really is great.

    Caraline Bianchetto Chase reviewed Cub Lake Trail

    almost 5 years ago

    While this is not my favorite lake in the park, it's still a great, short hike. I went at the cusp of fall foliage, so the air was crisp and cool, which was good because there were definitely parts that made me work! The lake was covered with lily pads and tress almost entirely circled its shores. Despite the popularity of the hike, I was still able to find a flat rock to rest & read at for a while before heading back down.

    Caraline Bianchetto Chase reviewed Arthur's Rock

    almost 5 years ago

    I have spent a decent amount of time at Lory, and if there's one thing I've learned, it's that all roads lead to Arthur's Rock. I have been to the top countless times, from it's official trail head and via the many intersecting trails in the park. It's very user-friendly, short but intense, and has great views of Fort Collins and the reservoir.

    Caraline Bianchetto Chase reviewed Grey Rock Trail

    almost 5 years ago

    Caraline Bianchetto Chase reviewed Chasm Lake

    almost 5 years ago

    This is an amazing hike. A steady climb through the woods brings you up to krumholtz and tundra in no time! Longs is in site almost the entire time, and it so beautiful to slowly approach it by a trail that winds through a boulderfield. My favorite part was when the trail abruptly headed back downhill, high above Peacock Pool, where it eventually leads to a lush, mini oasis before scrambling up to Chasm Lake.

    Caraline Bianchetto Chase reviewed Devil's Backbone Nature Trail

    almost 5 years ago

    If you live in the area, I recommend this "hike" as a sort of last minute effort to get some light exercise. It's more a walk than a hike, but being so close to those rock formations is pretty cool

    Caraline Bianchetto Chase reviewed Gem Lake Trail

    almost 5 years ago

    While super short, this hike is a great workout! The views of Estes Park and Longs & Meeker is gorgeous! My only complaint is the chipmunks, who practically crawled into my lunch bag.

    Caraline Bianchetto Chase reviewed Lower Dadd Gulch Trail

    almost 5 years ago

    This was a pleasant hike and a little more work than I thought it would be (in comparison to Hewlett Gulch). There was a tiny herd of cows on the trail, which was fine, except that there was a ton of cow pies!! I loved the ponderosa pine and scattered groves of aspen- along with the rock formations, this was a pretty trail.

    Caraline Bianchetto Chase completed The Loch Lake Trail

    almost 5 years ago

    Caraline Bianchetto Chase completed Alberta Falls Trail

    almost 5 years ago

    Caraline Bianchetto Chase completed Ouzel Falls Trail

    almost 5 years ago

    Caraline Bianchetto Chase completed Haynach Lakes Trail

    almost 5 years ago

    Caraline Bianchetto Chase completed Black Lake Trail

    almost 5 years ago

    Caraline Bianchetto Chase completed Emerald Lake

    almost 5 years ago

    Caraline Bianchetto Chase completed Emmaline Lake Trail

    almost 5 years ago