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Crater Lake Trail is a 3.8 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Aspen, Colorado that features a lake and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from June until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Length3.8 miElevation gain692 ftRoute typeOut & back
Dogs on leashKid friendlyCampingFishingHikingHorseback ridingNature tripsWalkingRunningForestLakeViewsWildflowersWildlifeBlowdownBugsRocky
Waypoints (0)
Contact
Getting There

Colorado Tourism Office, 1625 Broadway, Suite 1700 , Denver, CO, 80202, Phone: 800-COLORADO

Directions from Aspen: From mid-June through September the Maroon Creek road is closed from 8:30 a.m. - 5:00 p.m., you will need to take a shuttle. You can catch the shuttle from Rubey Park on Durant Street in Aspen. There is a fee for the Maroon Creek Shuttle.If you get an early start, drive 1/2 mile west of Aspen on Highway 82 and turn left at the roundabout onto Maroon Creek Road. Keep right and continue 9-1/2 miles to the Maroon Lake parking area.

Weather
UV Index
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Reviews (1629)
Photos (1540)
Recordings (1235)
Completed (4023)
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Roshan Raj Maka
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Hiking

Amazing!

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Maria Kobylkina
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Hiking
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Chad Holtzman
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HikingIcy
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Destiny Fowler
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HikingGreat!RockySnow

This trail was one of my favorites of all time! I hiked this on October 25th at 7 am, so right after the cold front hit and the Bells were hard to see until after my hike. It was gorgeous and snowing the entire time.

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Samantha Winningham
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Hiking

Beautiful hike! Very muddy right now. Long stretches of snow and ice, spikes were useful. The lake is dried up. Warm and not windy at all today. I bet it’s just breathtaking before the leaves fall. I plan to come back next August/September.

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Catherine Walker
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Hiking

Great views! Very muddy and icy, so come prepared!

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Katie W
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HikingIcyMuddyRocky

The lake is dry and the trail is starting to get a icy in parts. Overall, still a great hike and you can’t beat the views on a sunny day!

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Subramanya C H Praveen
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Nature tripsGreat!Rocky

Crater lake is all dried up now, but the hike was wonderful, got so close to the maroon peaks and the views were breathtaking. If you are going by car, get parking reservation online.

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Stephanie Wilf
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HikingGreat!Rocky

If you are making the trip to Maroon Bells for the day (or even half day), you should 100% do this hike. Absolutely stunning. Hike took us around 2 hours. Lake was dried up when we went this week but still amazing views there and along the way.

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Kaylee Jones
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HikingMuddyRocky

Great views. Lots of rocks. You need to take another path to get a good view of everything! Make sure you have reservation! Still beautiful!

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Tracy Kuhle
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Hiking

Crater lake is currently all dried up, but awesome views still!

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Josh Padilla
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Trail is only for exercise at this time of the year. Avid hiker and this is extremely underwhelming. Yes, the lake may be dried up, but I expected better views for being Colorado. The only picture worth taking is the Maroon Lake pic and that's with adding some filters to it. Good luck and happy travels.

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Jenna L
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HikingRocky

Nice, short hike. Quite rocky but leads to nice views of the maroon bells. Crater lake is currently dry, but the views are still nice. We got the parking permit for 4:30pm on a Friday and enjoyed the sunset in the mountains.

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Rexa Frasco
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Hiking

WARNING!!! You have to have a reservation to do this hike.

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Andrew F
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HikingGreat!

Lake was dried up but it was a great hike still.

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Kristy McHenry
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Everyone should do this. It is an incredible view. A little bit difficult but if you take it slow, you should be fine!

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Thomas Neal
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Hiking

Best mountain views, saw some wildlife, aspens mostly naked at the time, crater lake dried up but still worth seeing. Check with the welcome center in the Highlands for a stand by ticket to the Bells if you have no reservations or drive in before 8am. Do this hike.

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Mariah Marie
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Hiking

The fall colors are pretty much all gone and the lake is completely dry, but it’s still absolutely beautiful!

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Andrew Marshall
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Hiking
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Kerry Miller
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HikingFee

Great trail conditions. It’s worth the extra hike past Crater Lake (dry) to scramble over more rock fields and see more peaks

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Chris Kittelberger
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HikingGreat!

Lake is dry FYI, but the views of the peak are awesome the entire way up. Best hiking option in Maroon Bells in my opinion, aside from the super easy scenic walk.

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Ryan Pierce
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Hiking
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Jason Johnson
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HikingGreat!

Aspens bare, Crater dry, .... and still beautiful!

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