This trail is amazing. We had a few first-time backpackers with us and it wasn't too bad. It was a particularly wet rainy season, so the river crossings were very dangerous. We had to cross an ice bridge as well. I would not have done this trail any earlier in the season than I did because the conditions were barely passable. Luckily, we are all young and agile, so we were able to climb the giant blocks of ice, but it wasn't easy. We had a late start at about 6 pm and we made it to 9-mile camp just as it was getting dark We woke up, and the views were amazing. Great camp with bear bins. If you have more time, try to make it to Bearpaw camp. It was amazing. It was a great lunch stop between 9-mile and Hamilton Lake. However, once we made it to Hamilton Lake, it was all worth it. We were surrounded 360 degrees by snowcapped mountains. It was amazing. On our way back, just one day later, the trail was much easier to pass. It was mindblowing how quickly the trail conditions changed. I greatly enjoyed it. Plenty of water along the entire trail. I would definitely do this trip again.