Lake Charles Trail

HARD 27 reviews
#42 of 176 trails in

Lake Charles Trail is a 8.4 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Eagle, Colorado that features a waterfall and is rated as difficult. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from July until October. Dogs and horses are also able to use this trail.

DISTANCE
8.4 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
1889 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dog friendly

backpacking

camping

hiking

snowshoeing

trail running

cross country skiing

horseback riding

forest

lake

views

waterfall

wild flowers

rocky

snow

Directions from Eagle: Follow the Brush Creek Road, south of Eagle for 10 miles. Turn left onto the East Brush Creek Road, FDR 415 and drive another 6 miles. The last mile of FDR 415 is very narrow with some rocks. There is a parking lot just past the Fulford Cave campground. At the trailhead, there is an information board and a register box. A vault toilet is available for use in the campground.

backpacking
12 days ago

13 days ago

Awesome hike! Had a yellow belly marmot come right up to me while sitting on a rock overlooking the lake.

28 days ago

hiking
1 month ago

hiking
1 month ago

hiking
1 month ago

Great hike, well marked trail. A few backpackers & day hikers. In and out in 7 hours with an hour at Mystic Island Lake. I would rate it as a hard hike. Had a great weather window then a brief hail storm hit while at the top.

hiking
1 month ago

2 months ago

backpacking
2 months ago

Super beautiful. Honestly one of the nicest trails I've hiked in Colorado. The whole thing is gorgeous.

2 things to note. The trail is only 5.5 miles and is not difficult as stated in the description. It's medium difficultly at worst. There two really pronounced ascents, but the rest is really steady uphill. My comparison is to other trails in the area that are way harder.

3 months ago

June 16th -lakes are spectacular, partially covered in ice. The trail in is a bit of a mess- lots of dead and down trees to maneuver around. On upper 1/2 of trail still lots of snow patches that were firm in the morning but softened up quite a bit by afternoon. With the warm weather lately snow seems to be melting quickly and there were patches of snow we used as snowbridges in the morning that were melted by the time we came back through. The runoff is flowing down and covering large sections of the trail and there are a lot of stream crossings.
Be prepared for water, mud, and snow. All that being said, this was still a fantastic hike and well worth it for the views once you get to the lakes!

hiking
4 months ago

Awesome trail...I think? In all seriousness, this was an awesome hike. We 100% needed snowshoes and I'm glad that we brought them. Not sure how long the snow will stick around up there, but be sure to keep an eye out for sawed logs as we lost the trail a few times do to the amount of snow. If you follow the creek/river you'll make it to the lake. Also, the road up to the Fulford Campground was closed, so we camped in Yeoman Campground and hiked to the trailhead - fairly simple incline to get there. Looking forward to going back and making the trek past Lake Charles to Mystic Island Lake without all of the snow.

4 months ago

hiking
11 months ago

Was a good day. A little windy and cool. But typical for this season. A long hike into some dense areas. A few areas were a little tough to climb, but not difficult. There are a couple of down trees blocking the path, but easily able to walk around it. You will be ascending in some areas and once you get to the lake it is all worth it.

11 months ago

backpacking
Friday, September 02, 2016

Great trail,it is pretty difficult but worth it - lots of tree roots and rocks to navigate. We didn't see many people during the hike but there were a few other groups camping at the lake. Overall beautiful spot and a great place to camp.

backpacking
Thursday, August 25, 2016

We decided to backpack an overnighter at Mystic Island Lake, so our trip was a little longer than this route. My gps tracked almost exactly 6 miles all the way to where we made camp at Mystic Island Lake. Trailhead is in the middle of the Fulford Cave Campground. Scenery at the start of the trail is mostly aspen low growth forest, you'll pass by a few talus fields. First 2 miles are mostly flat, then comes a series of steep sections. Section between Lake Charles and Mystic Island Lake is mostly flat as well, so if you get all the way to Charles with ease, don't be afraid to keep pushing higher. Climbing parts can be misleading also, as you can't simply look uphill where the trail is taking you. Lots of water features along the way: creeks, waterfalls, natural wells, and obviously the lakes themselves. Overall a beautiful trail, and a wonderful place for an overnighter, especially during the Perseid meteor shower!

hiking
Saturday, June 25, 2016

Saturday, May 14, 2016

Sunday, April 10, 2016

great one day hike

camping
Monday, September 14, 2015

An absolutely beautiful hike. I started on a Friday night and stopped to camp for the evening just before the Holy Cross Wilderness boundary. The next morning I continued the trip to Lake Charles. It get quite steep at about mile 4, but nothing dangerous, and nothing overly rigorous. There are multiple places to camp near Lake Charles, and when I was there I only saw a handful of people, maybe 10 at the most. The alpine lakes are just breathtaking at all hours of the day. I will definitely do this hike again. The hike back was much easier and I made excellent time, leaving the campsite at 8:30 and arriving back at my car before 11 am.