Crater Lake Trail is a 9.9 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Silverton, Colorado that features a lake and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from May until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

Distance: 9.9 miles Elevation Gain: 1,994 feet Route Type: Out & Back

dog friendly

hiking

nature trips

walking

bird watching

running

lake

views

hiking
muddy
snow
4 days ago

Good hike, one creek is flowing good so you have to go up and around, lots of water running down parts of the trail. Lots of snow still but a lot of trail marking footprints to help out. Was a splashing good time!

hiking
flooded
muddy
snow
5 days ago

Spent one night at Crater Lake 5.27.20 I would give the trail a few more weeks to thaw out unless you don’t mind post holing. One section of trail about a half mile from the lake got a little tricky due to snow pack. Was nice having the trail and lake to ourselves. Wear gators, bring gps and trekking poles. The trail is obvious for the most part with our tracks in the snow.

hiking
6 days ago

I hiked to Crater Lake during the summer of 1973 and spent 11 days there with a friend. The scenery was spectacular. Most memorable were the hikes under the moonlight toward the saddle at the top of the ridge overlooking the Animas River Valley. The air at that altitude is so clear that you could clearly see the other side of the valley, about 6 miles away. The hike getting there was not easy, with gear for 11 days, but the trip stands out as a highlight of my life. Also, we did not catch any fish in this high mountain lake.

hiking
icy
snow
12 days ago

Snow packed 1/4 mile into trial. Need spikes if headed up and GPS. Looking forward to returning soon.

hiking
7 months ago

Excellent fall hike. Round trip to Crater Lake is 11.7 miles. Crater Lake is a beautiful alpine lake under towering peaks. Took us 7 hours including a 20 minute lunch stop at the lake (we are in our 60’s and live at 500 feet elevation). Lots of great views along the way. About half of the hike is rocky with the other half a combination of sand and pine needles. Lots of horse manure to dodge along the trail. We didn’t see any other hikers. Had the trail to ourselves.

hiking
8 months ago

Hiked this 8/20/2019. The trail is well-groomed, starting out in forest with switchbacks, then loose forests and finally into meadows. There are two smaller up-and-down bits that are not especially challenging before the final push. One section of the trail had lots of blowdowns—a little puzzling how this happened but I imagine it was pretty spectacular whatever it was. I did have a swim and though it was a little chilly getting in it was fine after you take the plunge (ha ha). Very few people on the trail, mostly just at the lake. If the elevation gain wasn’t super strenuous it was 11.6 miles by my tracker.

hiking
9 months ago

Great hike through the woods starting and stopping at two beautiful lakes with gorgeous views. My watch clocked us at more like 11.2 miles, so just be aware it’s a little longer than the app says. The trail was busier around mid day so I’m glad we got an earlier start.

hiking
bugs
muddy
rocky
9 months ago

For my birthday 8/10/19 this year, I went with a few friends and man was this tough. The incline was good. if I could make it so can you. I enjoyed the 11.8 miles.

hiking
9 months ago

This was my second visit (8.6.19). It was a PERFECT day to go—one without a monsoon. Most were backpacking in to stay at the lake with a few on horseback and a couple day hikers like me. There’s nothing to say but glowing things: the nearly 360-views of peaks from the get go, the variation in terrain and getting into the Weminuche Wilderness.I’m looking forward to re-visiting with friends in years to come.

hiking
10 months ago

Hiked this trail today, 7/31/19. Beautiful views all along this trail, only a few minimal muddy spots but the mosquitoes are prolific. My non-deet bug spray was NOT a deterrent. After the first couple miles the wildflowers are abundant & beautiful. The sign in the parking lot said 6 miles, All-trails basically says 5 miles to the lake, so split the difference and it’s about 5.7 (both our gps & watch said a total of 11.4 miles round trip). Nice trail, nothing strenuous and very little traffic (we only saw 3 other groups all day).

backpacking
bugs
muddy
rocky
10 months ago

this is not a trail for the beginner packer. I loved the green and wildflowers everything was very wet the ponds were full, wildlife great time. Be prepared for muskitos

backpacking
muddy
off trail
snow
10 months ago

As of 7/8/19; trail is muddy and oftentimes underwater. Lots of snow blocking entry as well. Beautiful once you get up to the lake, but the excess water really makes the mosquitos flourish.Try coming in August or September for the best experience!

backpacking
snow
11 months ago

Trail not passable very early on due to snow as of 6/29/19. Forced to give a star rating to submit this. Will try again next month and likely give more stars.

hiking
Thu Aug 09 2018

CRATER LAKE/ANDREWS LAKE/MOLAS PASS AREA. Guide books talk this one up and I feel they’re right! What contributed to a good experience today is that it was a Wednesday afternoon start and we had realistic expectations we weren’t going to make the full out and back plus the weather was perfect—no chance of rain, nearly cloudless and 70 degrees even at 11,000 feet! I made it to the Snowdon meadow though I found out from an overnight hiker on his way back (Ben) that I had picked an alternative path. The usual way to go to Crater Lake is the right fork of the “Y” that presents itself at the register box. Memorable moments: Seeing a Western Osprey loop repeatedly over Andrews Lake both as I showed up and departed—then seeing a second one! Noticing the texture change underfoot as I went from sturdy dirt trail to mushy marsh then to crunchy dried pine needles littering the forest floor. I will certainly be pleased to trek all the way to the lake. It’s a “definitely do it again” alpine hike with no-sweat trail access. Lovely!

hiking
Wed Aug 08 2018

Beautiful hike! Andrews Lake is a serene start to a great hike. A few switchbacks at the beginning, but once you reach the meadows it opens up. Experience some marsh crossings, meadows, forest, etc. The trail was maintained and easy to follow. Only saw a few people on the hike which made it very peaceful. We started at bit late, and the altitude had us a bit (we are from Texas), so we turn around a couple miles shy of Crater Lake. Wished we had sucked it up on forged on. NEXT TIME, and there will be a next time. Great hike and not too strenuous if you are used to the altitude.

Tue Jul 31 2018

Every section offered a new, breathtaking view. The trail was pretty easy - clearly defined, nice paths. A little more incline than I expected but still overall pretty easy. We passed a few people but it definitely wasn’t crowded. Our total mileage was closer to 11 miles and it took us under 6 hours to complete. We did sit at Crater Lake for awhile. The grazing alpacas were a surprise treat! Do this hike!

Fri Jul 13 2018

I had so much fun on this 3 day trip.. very good trail, rolling hills and climb.. both ways are good exercise but still easy/moderate. We had a lot of visitors like deer, birds, chipmunks, etc. I highly recommend this trail for a day hike, or backpack, or even to get someone hooked to the outdoors, because the views are breathtaking and the rewards are high.

hiking
Wed Jun 27 2018

Great trail and so worth it! It’s actually 5.7 miles to the lake (11.4 round trip), so it’s longer than advertised. Easy grade and well worth it though! Particularly if the flowers are blooming

Mon Aug 14 2017

Beautiful trail that's a real treat to experience.

Thu Jul 13 2017

Technical in places with some major climbing involved. Beautiful, though. Absolutely stunning!

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