Hassell Lake is a 3.8 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Empire, Colorado that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, camping, bird watching, and fishing and is best used from May until September. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Length3.8 miElevation gain836 ftRoute typeLoop
Dogs on leashCampingFishingHikingBird watchingForestLakeViewsWildflowersWildlifeBugsFee
Description
Waypoints (0)
Getting There

As of July 1, 2020, hikers report that this area is only accessible with a hunting or fishing license. Many users have reported difficulties getting to the trailhead during snowy conditions. This trail is best hiked between the spring and fall and proper equipment is needed during snowy conditions. FEE: $11.00

From I-70 take the Empire exit CO-40 past Berthoud Falls to the Big Bend. Turn left and follow 202 until you get to Woods Creek Road, turn left towards the Urad Mine. Follow the only un-gated road to its end. You will be passing through mine property but no need to worry about getting off track, they have gated all the places they do not want you to go.

Weather
UV Index
Daylight
Reviews (125)
Photos (104)
Activities (76)
Completed (228)
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jonathan Smith
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarOctober 2, 2020
Fishing

Smoke from the Williams Fork fire is quite bad at Urad Lake and I would imagine it's even worse at Hassell. Do not recommend visiting until it dies down.

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Taylor Jones
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HikingGreat!

Beautiful hike but hard to find. You have to drive 2 miles on an unpaved, uphill and bumpy dirt road

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Elizabeth Alexander
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarSeptember 22, 2020
HikingRocky

Beautiful. Very steep and rocky. The lake is worth it. Leaves are at peak. Fished a bit. Small shoreline. But caught a wee one. Saw an eagle fishing at Urad Lake. Trail head to Hassell goes almost around lake.

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Lisa Brudenell
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarSeptember 7, 2020
HikingRocky

Steeper than you think! About 1/3 of this hike was very rocky and steep. The rest is nice. Hike around Urad either on the road or across the dam, we did both. It’s not a very crowded hike, even on Labor Day, but lots of fisherman at Urad Lake. Hassell Lake is pretty, and you could hike all the way around it.

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Brittany Stewart
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Hiking

Short and steep the entire way to the lake, but the views are more than worth it!

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Madeline Devore
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarAugust 30, 2020
Hiking

Like others mentioned, trail can be hard to find. Sticking to the initial dirt road is easier than crossing the brush along urad lake. Incline was a bit challenging, but fun. Temps dropped significantly at the top. Altitude didn’t treat me well (I’m fairly new to CO), but partner was fine. Beautiful views and a good workout!

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Adrian Gasowski
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Hiking

truck or courage needed to drive to the top. drainage washed out a serious ditch on the drive up. parking was tight but manageable. brief walk up to Urad lake. you can get to the start of Hassell lake trail by circumnavigating Urad lake. we walked left at the start and returned by skimming the waterline and crossing the dam. the back half of trail behind Hassell isn't prominent and there are multiple routes set up by local fly fishermen and campers. easy to hit a dead end but look around and there will be some human tread. VERY STEEP and SANDY for a few hundred ft, doable without trekking poles but will not be fun in sneakers/tennis shoes. unless you like sledding of course.

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Alyssa Sue
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarAugust 22, 2020
Hiking

8/22: Arrived at 8am on a Saturday. Have a sedan and was able to navigate the road. just have to go slow. Lots of fishermen at Urad lake. I didn't see a single person on the trail to Hassell Lake. Was a rarity to have a trail to yourself on a Saturday. Was pretty, air was smokey. There is a section that is pretty steep. Overall a good hike.

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Jamie Rachek
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HikingGreat!
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Daniel Moyer
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Hiking

Great little hike! The first part is an old 4x4 road that goes around the first lake. The trail starts by traversing an avalanche slide area and then goes into steep switch backs. After that the trail is nicely wooded and easy to moderate the rest of the way to the lake.

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Allan Cate
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 8, 2020
Hiking

Trail was a bit hard to follow at times, so alltrails came really in handy. Followed the instructions from one of the other reviewers to make it to the trailhead. Drove a 2WD minivan up to the parking lot, so it can be done, but bumps are to be minded. Crystal clear skies and a slight breeze. Highly recommend

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Sylvie Cubbage
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HikingBugsRocky

Very beautiful hike. Was an easy elevation and incline, a nice warm up hike for beginners. Two beautiful lakes and some beautiful views!

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Jenna Salerno
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarJuly 30, 2020
Hiking

1st mile is a dirt road but the trail is very pretty after that. Steep climb through the woods but gorgeous little lake at the top with some cutthroat trout. Indian paintbrush, columbine, bluebells, and fireweed are out!

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Kylie Queisser
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Hiking

Went on a Monday afternoon, I was the only person on the trail and at the lake. Initial ascent is steep with little shade but levels out and goes into forest with more shade cover. Lots of mosquitos at the lake

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Bryan K
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 20, 2020
HikingBugs

This was a great hike, great scenery, trail can be tough to follow the closer you get to Hassell Lake. I was actually shocked we didn’t see more wildlife given how wooded it is and there were very few hikers. Mosquitos are a real issue, so make sure to bring spray, this was an epic fail on our part.

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JD Manifold
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Kudos to Cassie Stratton for a spot on review. Be sure to read it. I'll add the fishing was good. Brook trout everywhere and the water was crystal clear. It's a popular trail and it shows. Certainly not the worst I've seen, but there was a little garbage here and there. Took some of it out. Lots of wear and tear to the area around the lake. There are wildflowers to see, but nothing spectacular. Still pretty, though.

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Chris Bennett
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Hiking

Tough short hike up to a nice alpine lake.

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Pablo Vasquez
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MuddyRocky
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Cassie Stratton
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HikingOff trailRockyScramble

We hiked this trail yesterday and wanted to leave some pointers and tips!! Really fun trail with beautiful views and at the end we felt rewarded and satisfied. But definitely struggled a bit so here are some tips: - The road leading up to the parking lot is rocky. Lots of holes and rocks in the road with some sharp switchbacks. Make sure your car can handle it! Our 4wd subaru forester did great but it was bumpy. - Once you park, walk the path leading uphill to the left of the parking lot. - You can go several ways to get to the Hassell Lake trail: 1) Walk straight ahead (not down towards the lakeside, but on the upper path) and follow that path around Urad Lake until you come to two signs on your left that say "trail" and "bridge" (Check the photos I added!). Follow that across the bridge. 2) Walk down towards the lakeside and follow the narrow path around Urad Lake until you see the stone steps on your left. Go up those and then continue around the rest of Urad Lake til you see the signs I mentioned in #1. 3) Walk across the gravel over the dam and take a left at the end. There is a narrow path along the lake that will get you to the signs and trailhead. - The trail around Urad Lake is fairly easy, but once you head up to Hassell Lake it is STEEP. And there are times when the trail is narrow and right on the edge of the mountain. Be careful bringing kids or inexperienced people up! - There are a lot of downed trees, presumably from avalanches knocking them down in the winter. You'll have to step over several along the way! - Once you are up the mountain (about 11,8ft) the trails are not clear. If you want to go around Hassell Lake at the top, you may struggle keeping on the "trail" and will have to cross streams and climb over felled trees at several points. Remember where you came up to the lake so you can find the path back down! - Alltrails says it is around 3 miles, but it is closer to 4 depending on the paths you take. We hiked almost 5 miles with getting turned around a bunch and going around both lakes! - All of this being said, it was a great trail and we will definitely be back. just be prepared for what's ahead, bring plenty of water, snacks for the summit, and good shoes with traction. Have fun!!! :)

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Matt Naughton
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HikingFee

I drove up the road but didn't hike because there is a hunting/fishing license requirement that literally started today. Hopefully the Alltrails description will be updated by the time you read this. A day pass is $11. As far as the road goes, my low clearance all-wheel-drive Impreza was fine on the dry road. The road is at most as hard as the 4th of July road and is generally easier. If the road is wet, I could see it getting worse quickly.

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Pablo Vasquez
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJune 28, 2020
BlowdownMuddySnow

We definitely needed a 4wd to make it up there, roads are not in great condition. parking is limited but free, people fishing and the views were stunning. We had to walk a rocky road before starting the trail, lots of tress have fallen down and the trail is very steep for a short amount. good portion of the hike is going up the river so it makes it great. Once at the top, you can walk around the lake ( trail is hard to find) and find places to sit with a great view. definitely coming back!

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Philip Perrin
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarJune 25, 2020
Hiking

had a great hike with my two kids (9 and 6) and dog. beautiful lakes with friendly anglers. a few downed trees in some spots along the trail. got to the top and tried to walk around the lake but the trail was mostly indescribable - would advise against that. the road up is rough, but our little Nissan Versa was capable enough for the trek. all in all a great hike with kids.

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Miranda Marston
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarJune 23, 2020
Hiking

Absolutely gorgeous trail and the lake at the top is incredible. The path gets pretty steep and is all uphill for nearly a mile but totally do able. Highly suggest an SUV or car good with off-roading because the path up to the parking area is rocky and muddy with deep divots so could cause a problem from small or lower cars. Only a tad muddy in a few spots but was easily avoidable for the most part, was the perfect time of the year to hike this one!! ***lost my Acura car keys on the trail, I know it’s a long shot but if you by chance come across them and wouldn’t mind contacting me at mjmarsto@gmail.com I would be forever grateful!!***

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Remy Kelly
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarJune 22, 2020
Hiking

Short but steep hike. Nice views of the surrounding mountains. Saw lots of people hiking up to fish at the lake. No snow on the trail but there’s still snow and standing melt water around the edges of the lake. The trail around the shore was covered in places. Debris and trees from several avalanche slides cover the main trail in spots. Not a big deal but be prepared to climb over or reroute a bit.

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