Williams Lake Trail

MODERATE 101 reviews
#2 of 31 trails in

Williams Lake Trail is a 3.7 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Taos Ski Valley, New Mexico that features a lake and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from May until September. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

DISTANCE
3.7 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
997 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dog friendly

backpacking

birding

camping

hiking

nature trips

trail running

walking

forest

lake

views

waterfall

wildlife

snow

4 days ago

Great moderate hike. Beautiful views.

hiking
18 days ago

great trail, fairly uphill the whole way but absolutely worth the view. you start hiking from the parking lot by some skiiers and then split left. would definitely do again but yak tracks made all the difference, bring em!!

27 days ago

Fantastic trail! Easy for the elevation. 3/22/18 the snow is pretty packed down, but the freeze-thaw cycle means you probably want some kind of traction like yaktracks. It's a beautiful hike in the snow - cozy forest climb that opens up to a breathtaking bowl with the frozen lake.

hiking
1 month ago

Hiked in early-march. Trail was very well marked. Snow was well packed on the trail, which was about 3-4 ft. wide. If you stumbled off of the trail, the snow would rise past your shins. Views were remarkable, even with the lake frozen. Trekking up the mountain was moderately challenging due to the elevation, the way down was a blast. Dogs loved the trail.

hiking
1 month ago

Always a favorite trail to hike with a beautiful lake!

hiking
2 months ago

This is a great trail. Instead of attempting the steep drive in my Honda Civic, we parked in the ski valley and hiked up one of the ski runs to the trail head. Go through the ski village and head left along the chair lift. The run curves to the right and follows the river to your left. Cross the river again at the Phoenix restaurant / Kachina chair lift, and you're at the true trail head. This was about 8 miles round trip and relatively steep, but do-able even without hiking poles.

3 months ago

Awesome walk, wore runners and was fine, minimal snow on be trail. The lake at the end is simply stunning!

3 months ago

Great views and fun frozen lake at the end in winter

3 months ago

Loved this hike. Not too hard, not too easy, and beautiful views!

hiking
4 months ago

Nice hike, lake was frozen.
Most of the trail had tree cover, sunscreen optional.
Recommend micro spikes or something similar due to the ice/snow.
Sign to trail-head road stated "4-wheel-drive" only, however there were vehicles in parking lot that were not 4x4. Was a very steep climb to the trail-head.
Arrived at the trail-head Sun around 1100 and parking lot was not full and had plenty of places to park.
Trail is marked with blue spray paint on the trees if you get lost.
Since AllTrails does not have a way to communicate with other outdoor enthusiast, I can be reached on Facebook Messenger if you have any questions.

hiking
4 months ago

Fun trail with a beautiful lake at the end. We did the hike on Black Friday, and it was definitely busier than we expected at the lake, but the trail didn’t feel overwhelmingly crowded.

There was a lot of packed down and icy snow, so be sure to bring shoes with good traction. We lucked out with weather, but it would be easy to feel cold if you don’t bring warm enough clothing.

trail running
5 months ago

Lovely! Overcast and cold AF, perfect for a run. A bit of ice but easy to navigate. Lake is gorgeous and if we were better dressed we might have gone on to the peak. Don’t be a dumbass and forget your hat and gloves

hiking
5 months ago

Went on a cold grey windy day but it didn’t matter.... it was so beautiful and the trees protected us from the wind the entire way up. Situated in a incredible alpine bowl

hiking
5 months ago

Beautiful hike! Just right for a vigorous afternoon adventure. Be sure to bring a hat and gloves--it gets windy and cold up there even when it's temperate in Taos.

5 months ago

Awesome views and moderate hike. Take a picnic for a great time! Remember, pack it in pack it out!

hiking
6 months ago

I did this trail during my stay in NM in August and again in September (on the way up to Wheeler's Peak). It is by far one of the most beautiful places I have ever been. The hike itself is not too difficult with a mild but pretty continuous incline. The trail is wide and well marked but definitely rocky. Along the trail there are trees and many flowers. The lake is gorgeous, surrounded by mountains and so blue. If I am ever back in the area I hope to camp at the lake... absolutely beautiful!

hiking
6 months ago

Don’t be put off by the gravel Jeep trail the first 1/2 mile; gets better as you go. Be sure to hike to the waterfalls beyond the lake. It’s just another 8 minutes using the trail to the right of the lake.

6 months ago

One of my favorite hikes I've ever done, absolutely beautiful at the end!!!

hiking
6 months ago

This hike was okay, but not as glorious as all the comments on this page make it seem. Expectation and reality was completely different. The hike up to the lake was definitely rocky like everyone said, and it was steep, but it was not easy as some of the ridiculous comments here say it is. We saw a lot of people suffering on this trail.

The lake was rather average once you get there. It's surrounded by endless boulders and green rocks and colorless mountain peaks without trees; however, depending on your experience this might be nice for some people.

The lake sits in a bowl surrounded by canyons that pick up a lot of wind that shoots across the lake, so be prepared for a windy reward at the top. It gets cold when you crest the top because of the wind, so be prepared to add layers of clothing. We were there mid-September.

If you've ever hiked in the Rocky Mountains, this trail and lake might disappoint you as it did with our party. Also, Taos Ski Valley was terribly boring. There is nothing to do in this little ski town. We planned on staying four days, but checked out of our room after only two days.

hiking
7 months ago

We loved this hike, including our 16 and 9 year old kids. The beginning is rocky, so hiking boots really help. It's well shaded, and the lake at the end makes it all worth it.

hiking
7 months ago

The terrain was very rocky for many parts so be sure to wear your hiking boots. That was probably the hardest part for us because we wore tennis shoes, so our feet were/are still killing us. The hike was uphill and can be pretty difficult if you aren't acclimated to the elevation or aren't in good enough shape. It had many parts that were so beautiful and the lake was breathtaking. Tons of people on the trail when we went which was a bit of a negative for us.

8 months ago

Beautiful hike with a lovely lake.

8 months ago

Wow it's all I can say. Very steep climb but with plenty of beautiful surprises waterfall boulders and the you come to this lovely lake and it felt so spiritual. Will definitely do again. If you want to see where God lives you've come to the right trail.

hiking
8 months ago

My fiancé and I go once or twice a year together and every time is feels like a new experience. Easy trail with small varying terrain changes. Corn Husk Lilies and blue spruce 

8 months ago

This trail was definitely uphill the whole way but it was worth it. The end result is a beautiful lake and huge mountains with snow on them.

hiking
8 months ago

Amazing trail. I did have trouble in the beginning because of the altitude being im from florida this was definitely hard on me. I brought my two dogs with me, they enjoyed the whole trail but especially the lake. There was alot of people on the trail but we enjoyed meeting all of them. There was a girl there with 6 dogs. 6 dogs! I loved it but i did hear other people complaining about the dogs. Also a short hike away there is a waterfall. You can either cross the stream to the left or go over the rocks on the right theres several trails to reach the waterfall. I urge you to do this hike not very long and worth every step!

8 months ago

This is a nice trail from Taos Ski Valley. There is a pretty lake at the end of the hike. The plus side of this trail is the lovely restaurant at the end!

hiking
8 months ago

9 months ago

Great hike!

10 months ago

Parts of trail were covered in slush/snow in mid-June. Definitely need layers to keep warm. The view of the lake was stunning!

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