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    David Betz reviewed Mount Bierstadt Trail

    4 months ago

    Such a great hike! We got to the parking lot at 6:15 am on a Thursday in August and it was about 75% full, and it filled up the rest of the way very quickly. It is key to get there and start the hike before the sun rises, because you can log the first mile or two in the shade of the mountain and it relieves you from a lot of extra sun. We also saw 3 moose! They made their way across the foot of the mountain and actually ended up on the trail in front of us. Had to wait for them to move off the trail before we could pass. The hike is very busy, with lots of people, so you end up leapfrogging with other groups as you all climb and take breaks at different times. But its great to summit and see all of the other people who have been working hard alongside you! We made several friends along the way. The scramble at the top is the most difficult/technical part, especially because your so tired from the climb up and the air is the thinnest. Gorgeous views all along the way, make sure to take time to soak it all in!

    David Betz completed Mount Bierstadt Trail

    4 months ago

    David Betz saved Gray's Lake Trail

    4 months ago

    David Betz updated Gray's Lake Trail

    4 months ago

    David Betz reviewed Gray's Lake Trail

    4 months ago

    This is a great trail to see some beautiful views, gorgeous mountain stream, and a turquoise lake. The trail follows an old dirt road and gets decently steep with some loose rocks and gravel, but is easily manageable with some good hiking boots and a steady pace. The area is full of old mines and you can see some remains of the old rail lines and even some entrances to the mines that have since been filled in. To get there you can drive down the dirt road (Peru Creek road, which you can access off of Montezuma road) up to a gate about 5 miles in, which serves as the trailhead. There is a small parking area, but the dirt road is very bumpy and requires you to drive across a couple small streams, so you definitely need some clearance to get out there. This is the same trailhead as the Argentine Pass trail.
    As for the trail itself, its basically an incline all the way up to the lake, with a couple long switchbacks. It climbs the wide valley in between several high peaks (choose the Argentine Pass or Gray's peak trail for those) and more or less follows the stream. The lake is at the foot of Gray's Peak, which is a 14er, and the lake sits at just below 13k. The hike is out in the open, with no trees or anything to block the sun or the views. The lake is serene and beautiful, and a great place to stop and rest before turning around for the trip down.
    There are several additional trails that shoot off from this main road (the Argentine pass being one of them) and we followed one of them on the left-hand side on our way up that took us to the filled in entrance to one of the mines (Peru mine I believe). However, the trail to the lake stays straight, except for one fork in the road near the top - where it goes to the left, perpendicular to the hillside, and follows the ridge. There is no sign or marker showing this, so at first we guessed incorrectly and stayed right, which continues up the hill. But I could quickly tell this wasn't headed in the right direction and we went back the correct way. The lake sits behind a large bump/hill at the top of the hike, so the trail makes its way around it by skirting the hill to the left. By choosing the right-hand fork you would be headed up and over this extra hill, and I am unsure where the trail would lead you.
    Choose this hike for a beautiful day in Colorado!

    David Betz updated Gray's Lake Trail

    4 months ago

    David Betz reviewed Hanging Lake Trail

    4 months ago

    This hike is beautiful and it is steep. The hike is not that far of a distance, but with the elevation gain it takes a lot longer than a normal 3 mile hike. The views are amazing and the lake at the top is magical. My favorite part is actually just before the lake where there is a wonderful look out of the steep, chiseled canyon. Not too many other places in the US where you can see something like that!
    The drive through Glenwood canyon to get here in the first place is pretty spectacular, as the highway follows the river through the canyon. This hike follows another narrower side canyon. There were lots of people on the trail when we went on a Wednesday in August around lunch time. Parking was tight and we had to circle the lot a couple times before getting lucky and getting someone's spot as they left. Unfortunately there's nowhere else to park further away as the road only takes you right back to the highway entrance.
    I would definitely recommend this hike for some great views and a beautiful blue lake, but be prepared to fight for parking and climb some elevation. Its definitely worth it!

    David Betz completed Hanging Lake Trail

    4 months ago