Devils Thumb Pass and King Lake Trail

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Indian Peaks Wilderness

Devils Thumb Pass and King Lake Trail is a 15 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Nederland, Colorado that features a lake and is rated as difficult. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from July until September. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Distance: 15.0 miles Elevation Gain: 3,533 feet Route Type: Loop

dogs on leash

backpacking

camping

fishing

hiking

nature trips

snowshoeing

bird watching

running

forest

lake

river

views

wild flowers

wildlife

muddy

rocky

snow

Directions from Eldora: Travel west to the Hessie Townsite on CR #130

flooded
muddy
off trail
snow
5 days ago

I went up to Jasper lake via Devil's thumb trail, and took the same route back. it was fantastic, but lots of snow up top. prepare to get wet! the rivers and creeks are amazing right now

hiking
10 days ago

8.4/10 Made it roughly 6 miles in counter clockwise and lost the trail. Snow is formidable but not impassable. Would recommend showing up early for parking as others mention. Wildlife is spectacular and after a couple miles past the split crowds thin out. Will be back to complete in Augus

hiking
10 days ago

Fuck you, C Tone

hiking
10 days ago

Can I get an actual review C Tone?? This isn't a message board for you to tell people what to do. If you have a problem with people call the authorities. You're not a forest ranger or an officer and if you are by chance then do your job.

hiking
2 months ago

Heads up in case you haven’t heard. The Stay-at-home order is in effect for Colorado and all hiking trails. You are allowed to walk in your own neighborhoods but not drive out of your hood to trail heads like Hesse and Fourth of July. It was overcrowded up here last weekend and many people ignored laws and limits. Please work with us in keeping us all safe , healthy and alive. Thank you.

hiking
2 months ago

Indian Peaks is a wonderful place to visit. I’m fortunate to live a mile away. Please come prepared and drive with caution. Our mile and a half road in Eldora is 25mph for the safety of all, including the wildlife. We don’t have facilities, food or water. There’s no parking in our town due to the sides of the road being full of snow. Many of us living here use the road to walk and run on. We have elderly, handicapped folks, children and dogs as well that use the road. The wildlife walk along and cross suddenly at all times of the day and night. Please join us in working together to protect each other, the wildlife and environment . Thank you.

hiking
muddy
snow
6 months ago

hiking
icy
muddy
off trail
rocky
snow
6 months ago

Started at 7 am and only 5 cars. Needed spikes for the first 2 miles and then had to switch to snowshoes. Kept losing the trail and post holing even with the snowshoes. Almost no one on the trail. I intended to go to Jasper Lake but my pup was looking pretty tired and I wasn’t confident I could keep staying on the trail. Beautiful day regardless and can’t wait to do it again.

hiking
7 months ago

did as a day trip 10-19, counter clockwise, lots of snow and wind. ended up being 17mi with a bit of a side trip at Jasper which was well worth it

hiking
7 months ago

Great hike. Most of the Aspen’s have lost their leaves especially 2+ miles from the Hessie trailhead. We did the 15 mile loop counterclockwise as a day hike. Took us 8 hours with brief stops for snacks. Very windy up top but great views!

backpacking
bugs
rocky
8 months ago

Did this route as a 1 night backpacking trip 9/14/19 - 9/15/19. You need a backcountry permit for camping at the different areas, but you can get them at the Ace Hardware store that's in Nederland about a 15min drive from the trailhead parking. We arrived at the trailhead at 2:29pm on Saturday, started off clockwise with the goal to camp at King Lake by nightfall. Up to King Lake it was about a 7.3mi hike in with about 2,400ft of elevation gain. Took us 4hrs 25min total, and we were going at a pretty leisurely pace. Set up camp a little east of King Lake by the "unnamed lake" according to Garmin maps. Plenty of mosquitos but once it cooled down at night they went away. Set out next morning at 7:51am up towards High Lonesome. This portion was above treeline so a bit windy but nothing terrible. Headed down towards Devils thumb. Descending from high lonesome to Devils thumb lake it was a little rocky but nothing too crazy. After that took the Devils thumb bypass trail back to Hessie Trailhead. At a very relaxed pace with plenty of stops and pictures, the ~10.2mi day 2 hike took us 5:56hrs. Beautiful little loop. Great views, with just enough difficulty to make you feel like you've earned them.

backpacking
8 months ago

This was my first backpacking trip and I thought it was absolutely incredible! We walked the loop clockwise (Kings - Devils Thumb - Jasper) and we all agreed it was the better route. In terms of incline and mileage with our packs I think the other way around would have been more difficult. Just a heads up around mile 6 there is a steep incline which leads to a long flat walk along the ridge. There is essentially no trees and the wind was brutal for about an hour. Saturday we started around 7am, did about 10 miles, and camped next to Devils Thumb Lake. We finished the 5.5+ miles the next day in a breeze. Highly recommend!

hiking
8 months ago

Stunning hike all the way around the loop. Started at Hessie TH, arrived around 7am Saturday and grabbed a spot along the road. Fills up quick so get there early! Started the loop by Kings Trail, went over the pass and around to devils thumb where we camped for the night. (Permits needed - picked up the day before for 5$ at boulder ranger station) Hiked back down via the devils thumb bypass to come back to hessie TH. No wildlife sited but a lot of signs of bears/moose in the area so be aware. Definitely suggest starting the loop clockwise via kings lake otherwise you have a lot steeper of a climb.

The hike from devils thumb lake up to the continental divide was beautiful and so scary. Don’t look down if you have a fear of heights!!

hiking
8 months ago

Wow this was a really long trail for us. Took a little more than 10 hours. We stopped allot and had a dog with us, probably could be done quicker by some. The trail isn't overly difficult just long. Only one spot that had exposure. Amazing views everywhere!

backpacking
bugs
rocky
snow
8 months ago

I did this as an overnight backpacking loop. Followed the Devils Thumb Trail to Devils Thumb Lake where I spent the night. A gradual incline trail that was only about 6 miles long and it took me a little less than 4 h. The lake has plenty of camping spots and I think there were only 2 others occupied that night. Also saw a bull moose in the distance and heard some elks bugling at night. The second day I hiked up to the High Lonesome Trail and that initial ascent was a little hard, about 800 ft in less than 1 mile. There were also a lot of overgrown willows at the beginning and a very short but very slippery snowfield to cross towards the top. After reaching the High Lonesome trail, however, I was basically walking on level ground until I started a rocky descent to King Lake. After that, it was basically all downhill back on the King Lake trail to the Hessie trailhead. The hike this day was longer, about 10 miles and it took me a little over 5 hours. Saw a few people but not many. The parking area was very crowded when I started and ended the hike though. This is aga good backpacking loop. Lots of nice views.

hiking
9 months ago

I did this as a day hike and really enjoyed it. I got to the TH at 6, was able to find parking, and I was back in my car by 3. I did the counter-clockwise loop and really enjoyed it. I originally had planned to only go to Jasper Lake or Devil's Thumb Lake, but decided to do the entire loop. If you want to do this hike, arrive early and prepare well. I brought more than half a gallon of water and I ran out right at the bottom (but I drink a lot of water).There were just enough people where I could make sure I was on the right track, but more than plenty of alone time. Once you get on the bypass, you lose pretty much everyone. I would love to backpack this in the future, and I would recommend this trail to anyone!

hiking
muddy
snow
9 months ago

8/17-8/18. This was a 2 day trip for us. Camped up at Bob Lake actually but came back down and finished the loop. Absolutely gorgeous views every where you turn. Long trail though with some very steep climbs after King Lake. You do have to slide down some snow to stay on the Devils Thumb trail right before beginning your descent. I was nervous but it wasn't bad at all. Loved it! Also we didn't encounter any bugs but it was extremely windy the day we hiked.

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