Ice Lake Basin Trail

HARD 299 reviews
#1 of 90 trails in

Ice Lake Basin Trail is a 8.1 mile heavily trafficked loop trail located near Silverton, Colorado that features a lake and is rated as difficult. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from April until September. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

DISTANCE
8.1 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
3093 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Loop

dogs on leash

backpacking

birding

camping

hiking

nature trips

rock climbing

snowshoeing

trail running

walking

forest

lake

views

waterfall

wild flowers

snow

off trail

Ice Lakes trail has two common destinations, lower and upper. The upper basin is surrounded by awesome peaks. Vermillion, Fuller, Pilot knob and Golden Horn are climbed from this basin. Amazing blue/green lakes, late season wildflowers, moderately strenuous hike to creekfalls and waterfalls too.

hiking
3 days ago

Phenomenal trail! It's beautiful from start to finish. Don't hesitate to go. If you see water, you just have to cross it. Bring your trekking poles. Get ready for a hell of a view at the lake. Bring your camera.

hiking
9 days ago

The most perfect hike you could ever take in CO or possibly the world. Leaves us truly speechless. The water REALLY is that blue! Be prepared for water crossings and a difficult ascent, but it is completely worth it.

10 days ago

Amazing

11 days ago

There last August. One of the best hikes I’ve done. Great woods at the beginning. A fabulous meadow about mid hike with a great variety of wildflowers to wade through. And a big payoff at the top with a photo perfect lake. I’m in decent shape for pushing 60, and it was a good days exercise, hope I get the opportunity to do it again.

16 days ago

Steady elevation gain entire trail. With a heavy pack it was fun but tough lol. Island lake still has a little ice, but beautiful!

hiking
19 days ago

My best friend and I tackled this bad boy last Friday (6/1) after spending the night at the Mineral Creek Campground near the trailhead. We started our hike around 10 am and completed it around 5 pm. We did spend some time relaxing and having lunch at Fuller Lake, which probably added an additional hour to our hike.

There were a plethora of magnificent waterfalls all the way to the top of Ice Lake, which made this strenuous trek incredibly worth while. When you reach the plateau right before the final ascent is where you arrive in the valley of waterfalls, which is absolutely astounding.

There was quite a bit of snow once we reached Ice Lake, and that continued up to Fuller Lake. However, we did make it all the way up without crampons. But there were a few parts where we postholed and almost fell in the river, as the snow was incredibly soft from the heat.

The weather was perfect (mid 60's) all the way up to Fuller Lake, without a cloud in the sky and just some strong wind near the summit where we had to pack on the layers.

We had Fuller Lake all to ourselves and spent around 45 minutes there having lunch and taking in the views. We also lucked out with the same fortune at the top of Island Lake.

The trek down can be a bit treacherous if you do not know the way, and it also didn't help that the trail was covered in snow. Luckily, I had the All Trails app pulled up on my phone and we were able to follow the trail via the online map.

This is one of the most majestic and challenging hikes I have ever done. I would love to come back a little later in the summer when the lakes have thawed and I can enjoy them in all their beauty!

hiking
19 days ago

Great hike. 6/1/18, Lake accessible. Some snow, but easily accomplished.

25 days ago

Beautiful views all the way up the mountain! The Ice Lake and Island Lake are still frozen over and there was plenty of snow when you get to the last mile of the hike, but nothing crazy. Climbed with nothing but water, some snacks and one of my friends even had just running shoes! In the afternoon the lower lakes and ponds thaw and the flowers bloom, almost a different hike down!

hiking
25 days ago

Beautiful and so worth the hike. Great for backpacking.

27 days ago

Very hard but great views!!

hiking
29 days ago

Beautiful hike with plenty of switchbacks to help alleviate the elevation increase of 2430 feet. Filled with waterfalls year round. But LOTS of water flowing this time of year. If you go anytime soon I suggest gloves for the very last half mile of this hike as you will be thigh deep in snow when you fall in crossing it. I’m 5’4 and almost disappeared a few times. There is no way to avoid the snow nearing the top of the trail but push through it, it’s worth it. Other than that short sleeve and shorts were fine temperature wise. Lake was frozen over on arrival, but snow covered mountains made for a nice view. Saw many Marmots, 2 elk, a porcupine, and a LARGE Black Bear. Will be back to see the lake unthawed later in the year.

hiking
29 days ago

My all time favorite hike

29 days ago

Awesome trail!! We were unable to get to the upper lakes because of deep snow and the lower lake still had a small amount of ice on it. The waterfalls throughout the hike are amazing. We ate lunch near a huge waterfall right beside the split to go to the upper lakes. A hard hike but definitely worth it. It look my husband and I 3hrs to make it to the lower lake (we stopped frequently for lots of photo opportunities) and 1.5hrs back down.

1 month ago

Great trail! We didn't make it to the lakes. There was still snow on the trail.

hiking
1 month ago

We decided to see how far we could get on this trail in April knowing that we would probably hit snow at some point. There was less snow this year than usual in Colorado (2018) but we were not able to get to the top in regular hiking shoes (snowshoes definitely would help). We kept falling through the top layer of snow/ice up to our knees/thighs which made trudging on very difficult. We got about 1.5 miles in / 1300 ft up before turning around. The trail was lost to the snow eventually too (used phone GPS and looked for cut logs where the trail would be cleared). It was still very pretty and worthwhile but we'll have to return once the snow is gone. The temperature at the end of April was quite pleasant: just had a hat, some long-sleeve layers on top, and shorts (even in the snow it wasn't that cold).

1 month ago

Very beautiful hike! Intense at times walking in ice and snow at mid day, but well worth it to see the view at the top from the waterfall as well as the lower basin! Was not able to make it to the main ice lake basin due to snow and lack of snow shoes, but we went a little early in the season! We will be coming back in July to see the lakes thawed!

hiking
2 months ago

One word: SPECTACULAR!!!

2 months ago

An excellent hike and or an overnight x2

2 months ago

Very pretty hike but be prepared to hike in snow knee high at times.

2 months ago

This is probably one of my all time favorite hikes! I suggest getting there early in the morning to avoid crowds and to make sure you give yourself enough time. This is so scenic, everywhere you look is picture perfect! Wear layers, goes from hot to cold quickly. Bring snacks and plenty of water

2 months ago

Beautiful but busy! I left about 7 and made it back by 2. It's a bit of a burner but honestly the water is breathtaking and well worth the work. There were Llamas just chillin by Ice Lake which was random and amazing. I did continue up to Island lake which was awesome as well. People were fishing there and I sat for a good 10 minutes admiring the view. on the way there were quite a few people headed up. A few early morningers met me on the way up.

2 months ago

Good hike but well traveled at times.

hiking
2 months ago

Purely amazing

hiking
3 months ago

Absolutely amazing!!

walking
4 months ago

This was a beautiful hike however be aware that the road (county road 7 I believe) is closed. The last 4.4 miles of driving become walking. Also the snow was very deep (up to my waist at points) so bring snowshoes. It was still beautiful but be warned that this 8 mike hike is a 17 mike hike in the winter!

4 months ago

One of my favorite hikes.

5 months ago

A must!

5 months ago

probably the most beautiful hike we've done. the time of year may have helped as the change from 50° at the bottom to about 20 up top with almost a foot of snow made it feel like a fairy tale. will be back. not an easy one but may be one of the easier "hard" labeled hikes we've done in CO. I feel like there should be more ratings on here than easy, moderate, hard. If this is hard, there are hikes that are definitely VERY HARD.

6 months ago

One of the most beautiful hikes in the state. Hands down will be hiking it this winter.

hiking
6 months ago

My favorite hike!

Load More