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Grizzly Lake Trail

MODERATE 67 reviews
#41 of 229 trails in

Grizzly Lake Trail is a 7.1 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Aspen, Colorado that features a lake and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, nature trips, and birding and is best used from June until September. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

Distance: 7.1 miles Elevation Gain: 1,961 feet Route Type: Out & Back

dog friendly

hiking

nature trips

bird watching

forest

lake

river

views

wild flowers

wildlife

scramble

Directions from Aspen: Drive 10 miles east of Aspen on Highway 82 to Lincoln Creek Road. Turn right and drive 6.1 miles on Lincoln Creek Road to Grizzly Creek Reservoir. The trailhead is on the left just after the reservoir, but before Portal Campground.

hiking
12 days ago

Didn’t make it to the trail head.... a 4 wheel drive vehicle is needed.

hiking
20 days ago

I’m not the most experienced hiker, but most of our hikes are at 9 or 10 thousand feet at the highest. I left Denver at 4:45 am and got to the trailhead at 8. Got up to the top by 10, stayed up there for a minute and had a couple beers, and made the descent. The entire hike, especially given the weekend we did it with the aspens and all, was the most fulfilling hike i’ve ever made in Colorado. My dog and i were the only ones on the trail until the last mile back. The echoes if you yell at the top) are fun, and enjoying the view from 12.35K ft above sea level is awesome. The time i went was great because i only saw 10 people the entire hike and it was all on the last mile fo descent.

hiking
1 month ago

Hiked this 9/1/19 with my wife, and it is a really nice trail. A little of everything along this. The 1st half mile does climb pretty steady, and then it levels off through several meadows broken up by sections of forest for about a mile and a half. Once you cross the creek, the trail climbs to a shelf that is again pretty level, and then the last climb to the lake is pretty steep. Some loose gravel on this stretch that doesn't help either. Good size lake with great views all around. Fairly popular trail as we saw quite a few people up there. Mileage posted here is accurate. My Garmin read a little more than 7.1 though. We had a bit of cloud cover going up, so that was nice as this trail is fairly open thru the meadow areas. Once you cross the creek, there's no more shade. Highly recommend this trail. Beautiful canyon with the ridge line on your left going up being the continental divide.

hiking
1 month ago

Beautiful views, only two small snow patches to navigate. Lake is really a special place.

hiking
1 month ago

I did this hike on Wednesday, 8/21 with a friend. We got to the trailhead at 8am and we were the only ones there. The drive in was easy in a 4WD vehicle and we drove past the most destruction I have ever seen due to the avalanche activity this past winter. There were tons and tons (literally) of trees and debris all the way. Most of the trail is a gentle slope (with more downed trees) and beautiful views. The last 500 feet or so of the trail is the most difficult part - though in the scope of things, not too hard - but it does require some strength (lungs and legs). Be careful crossing the snow patches. Whether slippery because they haven't warmed up from the sun, or slippery because the sun has softened them up, you don't want to slide down and get into trouble. The lake was pretty and looking at the mountains all around you - and realizing that you're looking at the ridge of the continental divide the whole way - makes this a great hike. Bonus: when you're up at the lake, give the loudest yell you can and listen to the echos.

hiking
1 month ago

Wife and I completed Aug 18th. Took our time. Beautiful when you get there. First 2.5 miles is pretty easy but the last mile is tough and steeper. Not too many people. Was a good day hike.

hiking
2 months ago

Love this hike! Makes my top ten list. Good distance, and moderate. One snow field which was a little bit of a pain but not too bad, just a little slippery because of the incline. Lake was beautiful and could see trout jumping.

hiking
2 months ago

8/11/19 and there's still a good sized snow field to cross. The trail is obvious enough that you won't lose it when you cross. Thanks to all the moisture, the wildflowers are amazing. The last leg of the trail is steep, but worth it for the view.

hiking
2 months ago

We hiked up to Grizzly Lake yesterday (7/21) and it was a stunning hike filled with amazing views and wild flowers (columbines galore). Just a heads up though that there is still a significant amount of snow...there are still 2 large snowfields covering the trail and much of the creek. We crossed them wearing only hiking boots but we wished we had spikes or poles for those sections as it was very slippery. Also, it’s a little confusing to determine where the trail picks up on the other side of the creek. We crossed over snow (covering the creek) to get to the other side which was a little stressful as we didn’t want to punch through over the river. But we got to the other side and the trail was beautiful....lots of waterfalls and more wild flowers. It was a pretty steep and wet climb up to the lake. Great hike...maybe wait a couple of weeks for more snow melt and bring an extra pair of socks...your feet will get wet.

hiking
3 months ago

As of 7/13/19 There was still a lot of snow on the ground. We crossed probably 4 snowfields (avalanche paths) and a bunch of drifts. It was still very beautiful but at some points navigating the trail becomes difficult. Flowers were just beginning to pop out. Would definitely recommend this trail to others!

hiking
snow
3 months ago

As of 7/4/19, there is still a significant amount of snow on this trail. Not too bad at first, but at mile 1.5 we encountered a snow field that looked at least 2 feet deep as far as the eye could see. Should be doable with spikes or snowshoes, but we had neither and had spent the previous weekend negotiating snow, so we turned back. We had already lost the trail once in a smaller snow field and it wasn’t clear where to go (could’ve watched the red line, but still). The area however is absolutely GORGEOUS! True wilderness, only saw a few others (who had skies strapped to their backs!) Only three parking spots at the trailhead, but you can park at the bottom of the hill across from the lake and walk up, no big deal. The dirt road in is rough but nothing you can’t handle with four wheel drive and decent clearance. 22 dispersed camping spots on the road in and a free first-come first-serve campground just beyond the trailhead, all of which were of course occupied on the 4th of July. A gorgeous area that I recommend exploring, just might be best to wait another month or so if you’re hoping to avoid the snow!

recorded Grizzly Lake Trail

hiking
scramble
snow
3 months ago

Awesome hike. Completed on July 4th in the evening and we didn’t see another soul on the trail. Very snowy after the first mile, would recommend spikes or even snowshoes. The lake at the summit was completely frozen and didn’t show signs of thawing anytime soon.

hiking
Tuesday, September 11, 2018

We had a beautiful hike to Grizzly Lake. The last half has little shade or cover as you are at timberline. Saw big horn sheep! Got to the lake and fished for a while. Great fishing and caught beautiful native cutthroats. Saw only a couple of hikers on the trail. Had it to ourselves pretty much the whole hike. Took our time going up as the altitude and the incline took their toll, but the views and the lake are totally worth it.

hiking
Saturday, July 28, 2018

Gorgeous hike, quickly leave the trees for open hiking through fields of wildflowers surrounded by rugged peaks. Reminds me more of the Alps than a typical setting in the Rockies. BUT, and it’s a big but, it’s easy to forget in this range they the valleys are high and the ridges even higher - we got crushed by a massive hailstorm at 11:30am on our way down and even deep in the valley, there was no cover and a big hurting from nickel hail that accumulated thick on the trail. Respect the weather, and remember that the storms don’t always wait till the afternoon.

Thursday, July 19, 2018

Absolutely loved this hike!!! Our GPS said it was 8.3 miles. GREAT WORKOUT. breathtaking beauty loved hiking through several Alpine meadows dotted with wildflowers of every color, crossed a few streams. pretty steep up the final mile ... really worked to get to the top. but we zipped down. We had a very late start after 4:15 so recommend starting earlier

hiking
Sunday, June 10, 2018

The six mile drive up Lincoln Creek Road can be a little dicey, but don't let it put you off -- it actually gets better toward the end. We have a Chevy Traverse (grocery-getter) and had no problem. The trail begins with a bit of a climb, but then levels out onto a valley meadow that follows Grizzly Creek all the way up to the lake. There are several river crossings, but none that need be wet (the first may seem wet, but if you follow the river up a bit you can hop across on the islands. The going gets tougher after the river crossing -- some snow, but didn't even need our micro-spikes. The farther you go, the steeper the climb -- that last half mile was tough. Throughout the hike you have beautiful views. My wife and I are 60, and we had no problems. One of our favorite hikes in the Aspen area.

Friday, April 20, 2018

One of the most beautiful hikes in the Aspen area.....this MODERATE trail with elevations spread out over a 3 mile climb has everything from a moderate steep forest climb, to meadow & stream crossing, a water fall, alpine tundra with little pools of water, with a very steep ending to a pristine alpine lake that you can fish in. .... the hike for us-was hard- physically and mentally. We are from the South. It took us a little over 3 hours to hike. But so glad we hiked this one! On this trail you’ll find yourself isolated from crowds probably because the drive to the trail head requires a 4x4 vehicle. A 6 mile adventure in itself! So account the extra drive time into your plans to reach the trail.

hiking
Friday, August 04, 2017

Starts out moderately steep through the pine forest, then a gradual climb through the valley, finishing with a steep climb. There's a bit of a "false summit" where you think you're about at the lake only to discover upon clearing the ridge that you've still got more climbing to do. The final bit of the trail to the lake is steep, loose, and rocky, making for a slippery hike once you start down. Gorgeous, open views of the wide valley and surrounding peaks. Wildflowers were spectacular this first week of August. Bugs were bad at the trailhead but not a problem at the lake. Only saw two other parties (four people) on this summer Friday.

hiking
Sunday, July 23, 2017

Awesome trail! Best time to go is mid July to August. Little to no snow and wild flowers everywhere. About 3.5 hours round trip.

hiking
Thursday, July 06, 2017

One of the most beautiful hikes in the Aspen area. Definitely my favorite.

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Beautiful and with a nice climb. In late June, snow made it pretty tricky and taxing to get to the lake (some scrambling involved) but well worth it. If you're into geology (or gem hunting), check out the rocks on the creek bed. Huge diversity of rocks! Sandstone, limestone, igneous, maybe some metamorphic rocks, too.

hiking
Tuesday, September 06, 2016

This trail is simply beautiful, but very deceiving. At first you'll hike through timber and will hear the stream beside. You'll then discover an open meadow with gorgeous vistas. And this easy going part of the trail is truly moderate hiking. In the last third on the journey, you'll start the climb. My hiking buddy called all our arrivals to what we thought was finally the lake, "false summits". We got a late start, but didn't quit. We arrived at the lake at 6pm, just as the sun was starting to make its way behind the mountains. The aquamarine blue slowly disappeared and we started back. We saw deer, but no goats. We heard the Rocky Mountain goats were in the area, but no sightings. This hike is far more difficult than alluded to in the ratings. It took us 6 hours round trip. We moved at a comfortable pace. For those who use Fitbit, we clocked about 34,000 steps and because we hiked around the lake a bit, had 330 floors or 3,300 vertical. Take a whole day to enjoy this beautiful hike!

Sunday, July 17, 2016

great hike, easy to follow trail. make sure you have 4x4 to get there. ling rough road to the trail head.

hiking
Thursday, July 07, 2016

Great hike! Amazing views after you get out of the trees. The top half is the hardest part. The drive up there is tough. Make sure you have a high clearance 4 wheel drive car.

hiking
Wednesday, March 04, 2015

Nice hike ,lot of scenery. Aug. 2005

hiking
Thursday, March 20, 2014

Awesome hike up a Glacial Valley where the view is spectacular. the hike has many wildflowers if you go at the end of July or the first of August. The Lake is at the bottom of Grizzly Peak and we saw mt. goats on the peak, about 100 yards from the lake. The road going up Lincoln Gulch is rough in spots, but a high clearance vehicle will do fine.

hiking
Thursday, October 31, 2013

Beautiful hike, but you really need a 4WD high ground clearance vehicle to get to the trailhead. Some good sized rocks in the road.

hiking
10 days ago

hiking
24 days ago

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