Lion Lake Trail is a 12.6 mile lightly trafficked out and back trail located near Allenspark, Colorado that features a lake and is rated as difficult. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from May until September.
cross country skiing
Not sure about the description for this hike. The maps and signs tell a different story: an out and back trip (not a loop) equalling about fourteen miles for Lion Lake #2 trail, beginning at Wild Basin (my review, here).
Started about 11am and arrived about 530pm, with a fair amount of exploring and admiring along the way. The last 2.2 miles, from the junction with Thunder Lake trail, requires some fitness. I made the return trip in about 1.75 hours, with a quick pace to chase fleeting twilight.
Early in the hike, a substantial walking path cuts through lush forest, crossing the creek it parallels several times in the first few miles. Cooper, Calypso, and Ouzel Falls (and many lesser water falls) compose the first half of the sojourn. They make excellent opportunities to rest and hydrate. (Of course, to be safe: filter what you drink from the water sources along the way, unless you want to know "Beaver Fever".)
Amazing old-growth forest, with Lodge Pole and Yellow Pines in abundance, especially the last few miles, where "totems" can be found and Krummholz call home. Arrive in a serene mountain park, with dramatic peaks and cliff walls in most directions. There are few words that describe such majestic natural beauty. "Awe-inspiring" seems an appropriate descriptor, but inadequate, at best. The views remind me of a Bierstadt painting.
I met an afternoon rain mid-hike (about 3pm), as expected, and then a later storm that dropped sleet and rain, prompting a swift exit, chasing the last day light remaining across the lower bridges into Wild Basin. I was thankful for the rain jacket I brought, and obviously recommend quality gear for a 14-mile journey like this, in high RMNP elevations.
Started our hike at 6:00 and finished at 1:50. The hike was 14 miles round trip (longest hike we have done so far). The hike itself was easy to moderate except the last 2 miles which was a little difficult. Weather was ideal not to cold in the morning and probably mid 70's when we finished.
It was great to have our lunch there w/o anyone else around. SO PEACEFUL!
MAP -> http://www.rmnp.com/Maps/RMNP-Map-WildBasin.JPG