Hells Hole Trail

MODERATE 138 reviews
#13 of 126 trails in

Hells Hole Trail is a 8 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Idaho Springs, Colorado that features a river and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from March until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

DISTANCE
8.0 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
1912 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dogs on leash

birding

hiking

nature trips

trail running

walking

horseback riding

forest

river

views

wild flowers

rocky

This is a very popular trail leading up into the glacial cirque known as Hells Hole. Traveling along West Chicago Creek, the trail climbs for a mile to a bench above and west of the creek. The trail continues climbing less steeply, through lodgepole forest and into the bristlecone pines. The trail ends at timberline in Hell's Hole, in an open meadow at the base of Grey Wolf Mountain

7 days ago

not much snow right now. first half of trail maybe an inch or 2. second half 4-6inches. it's all packed down, so it's not bad. I did the hike in just my boots. really no need for any traction.

hiking
16 days ago

Snow on most of the trail, but enough tracks showed where the trail was. Slick in places, and pretty views at the cirque.

hiking
1 month ago

Great well maintained trail. Hiked on 11/13 and some snow on the trail. Nothing too deep. Bit slick in places but still a good hike. Cirque at the top is pretty cool.

hiking
1 month ago

Decent hike, several creek crossings, pass through some aspen stands. Cirque at the end is worth the hike. Looks like reasonable access to the ridge, summit of Grey Wolf. Might require bushwhacking through willows. A little snow in patches along the trail right now. Not deeper than an inch or two. Base of the cirque on far side of willows is about waist deep. Encountered a coyote at the tarn.

backpacking
1 month ago

Moderate +plus. Nothin’ difficult, just some steeper parts that merit some reckoning. Gorgeous cirque at the end. Definitely getting into winter conditions with patchy, wind-swept snow in the trail.

2 months ago

beautiful hike, fog rolled in as storms we're developing making it serene, spooky and spectacular all at the same time. lucked out on timing on this one.

2 months ago

Follow the dead end road all the way to the end, past the campground to find the parking lot and trailhead. (I lost service about half way up and just crossed my fingers!). Great moderate hike, very light traffic (on a Monday)!

3 months ago

One of my fave trails... nice little work out. Quite Trail

hiking
3 months ago

Nice easy trail. Nothing that spectacular.

backpacking
3 months ago

Solo backpacked this trail over the weekend - a perfect out and back with just enough elevation gain on the way in to keep me huffing and puffing. Really felt like I'd earned my dinner by the time I set up camp! Just a gorgeous spot at the end of the trail - had the whole meadow to myself (and some elk and squirrels). Totally worth it - but make sure you bring plenty of water! There's no easy access to water for the first six or so miles so if you're going to filter at camp, make sure you've got enough to get you there first.

hiking
3 months ago

Good but not awesome

3 months ago

Really like this trail. Nice to. E by the water. Saw a few nice people. Will do this one again.

hiking
3 months ago

Very pleasant trail and hike. Nothing particularly unique or special about it that makes it stand out from among many other typical "hike up a gulch to a cirque" out-and-back hikes. I think "moderate" is a fair rating - there are no particularly challenging spots or slopes. The first third of the hike has some steeper, gravelly sections that make make you work, but after that it's pretty gentle. We enjoyed that the trail went among a number of bristlecone pines near the top.

hiking
3 months ago

We hikes this on 8/20/17. A perfect day to hike, and an awesome trail. This is we well marked trail, with alot of places to camp if you wanted to. we arrived at 09:30 am, so there weren't many people on the trail. there are a lot of Aspen trees on the way up, so this will be an awesome trail to hike in the fall when the leaves turn.

hiking
4 months ago

Beautiful start, lush green aspen forests... steep inclines mixed with more mellow sections. Well trodden trail, never hard to stay on it. Probably beautiful in the fall. Bugs weren't bad at all in early August. Plenty of backcountry camping.

hiking
4 months ago

After a couple of years decided to start hiking at 3:00 a.m., "is nice to get there with sunrise "

hiking
4 months ago

I loved the hike, the diversity of trees from Aspen, to Blue Spruce, Penderosa Pine, and more. Look for a magical tree that reminds you of a string instrument. And don't forget the variety of mountain flowers. You will spot Indian Paint Brushes, Blue Bells, and several other beautiful mountain flowers. The trail needs a new name though.

hiking
5 months ago

destination is a high mountain meadow with small ponds and a Creek. The bowl rises up on all sides and is very pretty. Great old trees...

hiking
5 months ago

Pack bug spray for this one! The first 2/3 were packed with biting flies and mosquitos. Otherwise, it was a quick and relatively easy hike. Poles would have come in handy for the steeper and more loose sections.

hiking
5 months ago

The trail is beautiful, but pretty tough. the first 2 miles are straight up, the next two are a little nicer but still up. Getting down is just as bad, lots of steep places with loose gravel. Trail is pretty rocky with lots of sun and bugs. Amazing workout, you will be sore, esp your feet.

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