Explore the most popular skiing trails in White River National Forest with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Relatively easy hike up a old mining road. We did with our two boys without difficulty. Once you leave the trees, the gulch opens up and is gorgeous. The kids loved it.

Beautiful scenery!! The hike was much more difficult than I anticipated, but I enjoyed the challenge. When you get close to the top by the lake the trail kind of disappears and you have to wing it.. that made me nervous! Definitely a great hike for the adventurous.

Took this short hike today, 6/15/18. The road to the trail head is in good shape for any kind of car or truck. Didn't know this was such a popular hike but it is. Lots of people up here today. You park right on the road by the trail head sign, elevation is about 11,050', then take the left fork in that road right there. Walk the road to the gate and then further on till you get to another sign. Stay left up the hill here. You'll cross a foot bridge a ways further and then the road turns into a trail around this point. It's nice and shady thru the wooded stretch and then opens up again closer to the falls and the lake. The waterfall is worth the walk. It splits towards the bottom and is a nice cascade. From there, the lake is not much further and there are lots of trails that break off all over. Most to campsites, so stick to the most well worn one and you'll find your way to the lake. The lake is long and narrow and a nice spot to hang out for a while. We didn't have a chance to go further to the upper lakes as it was getting dark with rain clouds. My Garmin read exactly 2 miles to the lake. The elevation at the lake was 11,950'. Once we started back down it did in fact start sprinkling a little, and then it turned to snow, and then down lower yet it was back to rain. This is a great little hike and easy for anyone. No real difficult parts at all. Beautiful scenery with Quandary Peak on your left the whole way up.

Gorgeous trail. Mountain goats, pika, prairie dogs, and more wildlife make for an even more interesting 14er experience. Ridgeline is beautiful and overlooks upper and lower Blue Lakes. This was an enjoyable hike. Start early, as storms will brew in the afternoons.

I hiked Quandary on Wednesday (6/13). Left around 5am from Denver and started at the trailhead by 6:45am. I summited almost exactly 2 hrs later and was back at my car by 10:45am for a smooth 4 hour round trip (hung out for 20 mins at the summit). This was my first time hiking Quandary, but it was my 10th 14er I've hiked. Trekking poles made this hike much easier, especially for the last half mile or so climb, but not required. Saw lots of mountain goats and once you're out of tree line the views are beautiful.

Mostly uphill. Beautiful views. The mining ruins were really cool. Lots of great water and streams too.

We hiked this today and is was spectacular! Light snow and rocky terrain from falls to the lake, but so worth it. People told us they saw mountain goats but we missed them :(

We had our two kids (3 and 1) in packs and made it to the old mining cabins. Fantastic hike w/ stunning views. From the parking lot to the cabins and back is more like 2.5 miles round trip. We didn't do the full 6 miles. Trail is more of a dirt road w/ a decent amount of snow runoff crossing the road making it a little muddy in places but I did the hike and running shoes and it was fine. I really enjoyed the hike and our kids loved it as well.

7 days ago

Great views! Took us a little longer to get to main trail but worth every step. Good physical challenge combined with friendly goats, spring flowers and 360 views.

Hiked (6/9/18). Started about 6:45, summitted around 11. We took plenty of breaks. Gorgeous views from the top of this mountain, but beware when people say brutal last 1,000 feet, they **really** mean it. You’re basically climbing something that’s slightly below a scramble. You don’t quite need your hands, but it’s super super steep. It’s also really rocky for the upper hike. Rock, shale etc.

We did this with our corgi, so dogs can definitely do it. There are mountain goats, so keep that in mind if you plan to bring a dog. I’d recommend bringing booties for their paws unless they’re really used to rock. Our corgi was ultimately fine, but we could tell his paws were sore the next day since we didn’t have booties for him.

Overall, glad I did it, worth the views, but I don’t have any desire to climb it twice. I’d give it 4 stars, but AllTrails has the description “would do it again” for 4 stars, and I really would rather not. Haha. That end part is rough.

Climbed this morning! Truly a wonderful hike. VERY minimal snow right before the summit. Easily walked over, just be careful coming down. A little icy, but not enough snow to hinder your hike. I didn’t need trekking poles OR spikes. As stated by hikers before me, there are super friendly mountain goats lingering around at various parts of the trail.

I stopped a lot along the way. In total, I spent about 5 hrs 15 minutes on the mountain. I was at the summit by 9:20am. (Left car at 6:15am, and made it back to car by 11:22 am. I parked in the lower lot because spots by trailhead were already taken.) I passed a LOT of people on my way up and down. Easily over 3 dozen people were having fun on the hill. I was solo-ing today, but the awesome energy of the other hikers around me was enough to keep me going.

Words of advice: just keep going if the weather permits! Totally worth it. The random stairs in the side of the mountain above tree line are annoying going up, but super needed on the jog back down.

Wonderful trail with gradual elevation. Hiked to the relaxing sounds of a river, and various birds. There were several feet of snow at the final climb of the trail. Need long pants and solid boots for this. I went around much of it. There was also some significantly muddy areas that require good boots. Wonderful view of the mountains at the end of the trail.
Follow the written instructions to find the trail at this time, the trail mapped out has you crossing a river in the beginning and end that is quite deep at this time. So follow the bike path and hike under the highway as instructed.

If you feel up to it, you can go to the to of any of the peaks at the end of the marked trail. The view is worth it!!

This trail is definitely built for the sunset. The lake and waterfall view is absolutely incredible with the sun in the background. The trail is very well marked however between the waterfall and lake the trail is covered by snow for about 750 feet. This hike is a great mix of mountain, water, and forest views. Lots of wildlife on the sides but nothing dangerous! Ended up being a 4.5 mile hike that I would recommend to everyone.

Great hike! We left on a Saturday at 7am and the trail was crowded as advertised. Especially up on the final push towards the summit. Weather was fantastic and the views were great! There was a small patch of snow up near the summit, that I was glad a brought some microspikes up for the ascent. You could manage fine without, but the extra traction seemed to help me. I brought my dog up to the top with me, but was glad that I had some shoes for him. The trail has quite a few jagged rocks for the last 1.5 miles up and down, and I would've been scared for the pads on his paws if I didn't have a pair of the ruffwear kicks for him! Lots of people passing especially towards the top. Great beginner 14'er and the views up top are fantastic!

Hiked this for the first time this morning. Started out at 6am with my wife, 20 year old son and 10 year old daughter. My wife and daughter turned around at a little over 1.9 miles because of the extremely cold wind. I continued to the top with my son and we made it there in about 2.5hrs. It’s really a great hike, but the wind made it a little uncomfortable at times and very uncomfortable on top. We made it back to the car in good time with a round trip time of 3.75 hours.
My best advice for anyone heading up early in the morning is to have plenty of layers. Make sure you have something to cover your head and block the wind.

Great hike. Moderate hike and not too strenuous. Very rewarding views. Slow steady climb from the car park to the cabins. Very little snow on the ground currently although a little wet in places due to the run off. This is much shorter than I think detailed here.

Hiked it today and had a great time. Trail was a bit difficult to follow once you get past the big waterfall, but was an amazing trail.

on Quandary Peak Trail

10 days ago

We arrived at the first parking lot yesterday at 6:30, which was basically empty. We decided not to chance checking out the roadside parking near the trailhead indicated by AllTrails, but there were plenty of spots open there too.

This was most of our group’s first fourteener, although we have been hiking around the Rockies for a few years now. It was a great choice for at least a handful of reasons: well-defined trail, short yet sometimes intense, well-behaved mountain goats, and basically no exposure.

The trail was clean, easy to follow, and fairly populated. There was minimal mud and the only snow was near the final pitch. No traction or poles were necessary but the latter are probably useful in general. We threw on our spikes to take the road less traveled on as the packed-snow trail became quite slippery when the incline was steep.

As usual, take plenty of water, sun protection, wind protection if your skin needs it, sunglasses, and some layers. Get ready to enjoy some incredible views!

Some reflections on this hike as a first fourteener follow. Let your body acclimate to the elevation during the initial gentle segment and set a pace for it to get used to. Reapply sunscreen. Have fun, breath, and enjoy the final ascent that literally goes on forever.

Please pack out what you pack in.

Is the road to the trailhead open yet?

Absolutely stunning view from the falls. Some moderate mixed terrain about halfway up, but the views are well worth the effort.

11 days ago

My family of 5 ranging in age from 15 to 49 hiked Quandary on 6/6/18. I would describe us all as very fit (runners, triathletes) but with zero hiking experience and from Texas. Due to our lack of experience, it was difficult but worth every minute.

We started at 6:45 (only one parking spot left at main trailhead but spots remaining at parking lot further down) and made it to the top around 11:00 which included a 20 minute break and plenty of short stops to catch our breath and enjoy the view. We had perfect weather and low wind but intense sun so definitely needed lots of sunscreen and chapstick. We all hiked in tennis shoes which was ok but make sure they still have good tread.my sons shoes were a bit older and he did slip a bit in snow patches. We also rented trekking poles from Breckenridge Mountaineers and I am not sure I could have made it down without them. There were a few small patches of slushy snow above tree line then one larger patch near summit. The snow was a bit tricky in tennis shoes but we made it across slowly. Coming down my son sled on his butt which was fun and efficient. The boulder fields are the most difficult part. Once you get past the false summit it gets very intense but with the summit in view we were able to push through .The panoramic view of the Rocky Mountains from the top was amazing and we were so lucky to have perfect weather.

Took us 3:43 to get down with a long stop to hang out with the goats. I was hoping coming down would be easier but still pretty hard so make sure you maintain nutrition and hydrate throughout.

Biggest difference between this and a marathon is that every muscle was engaged the entire time to climb, maintain balance and safe footing. Definitely exhausted and a bit sore the next day but would do it again in a heart beat!

My boyfriend and I did this hike yesterday. We started at 7:30am and were back down by 2pm. We could not have asked for a more clear and warm day for our first fourteener experience.

The final stretch up to the peak with the hardest part both on the way up and down. We did not have spikes or poles, but they did not seem necessary for any part except coming off the peak because it’s very steep and covered in slushy snow. I simply put my gloves on and slid down quickly on my butt. It was the most fun.

This trek is great because you are rewarded with views almost the whole way, and at the peak you are spoiled by a panoramic view of the vast high Rockies. Wear hats and clothing to protect your skin. The sun is intense at 14k feet.

12 days ago

Hike through the snow to the first upper lake it’s absolutely worth it! Only plus 30 mins from the waterfall.

Absolutely amazing. A bit difficult with all type of terrain. Keep going until you get to the waterfalls... worth the hike.

14 days ago

Great day June 2 and very nice trail, but remember sun screen and chapstick.

Did this yesterday. Completely clear skies. First 14er. Breathtaking views! A bit muddy in spots. A lot of snow up top. Started at 6:30 am. Took 3 hrs to ascend. A light long sleeve with a vest was perfect. I Put a windbreaker with a hood on when the wind started whipping and it helped A TON. Glad I brought sunglasses and sunscreen, the reflections on the snow were killer. Forgot my walking poles in the car.. it was ok until the descent. I usually have great footing, but slipped and fell twice, lol. The poles would’ve helped! It’s pretty steep and the snow was starting to melt and get slushy on the way down. Overall, an epic experience. So glad we did it!

15 days ago

Decent views the day I went , partly cloudy. Somewhat
Uneventful climb ,pretty much walking the ridge most of the hike. You can see roads and cars the whole hike, so not the most remote hike you can do, decent number of hikers on the way. Wind was pretty ferocious as other reviews have reported, make sure you have proper gear to deal with 1-3 hours of pretty intense winds, and if sun is covered the temp can drop quickly.

My wife and I did this hike today and it was amazing. The parking is great and this trail doesn't seem to get too busy. We've done this hike twice now and we love it. The views of the mountains are great once you get to the opening by the abandoned cabins. I highly recommend this hike. It says that the hike is moderate but I thought it was fairly easy as long as you don't go too far beyond the cabins. Great summer hike!

18 days ago

the trail was gorgeous, but there was too much powdery snow to reach the summit. it's definitely worth the hike to see the lower meadow, but the peak probably won't be accessible without snowshoes for another few weeks.

Hiked this on June 1. We had micro spikes but you can do it without.

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