Explore the most popular birding trails near Aspen with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Be ready. Prepare. Physically and upstairs. And it will be one of the most memorable camping experiences. Period.

It tricked my watch! Shorter than the app posted!

Awesome trail through every aspect of a mountain! Aspen groves, forest, meadows, rock slides. Hiked from the Maroon Bells down beside the Maroon Creek, took less than 1.5 hours. Beautiful!

This hike was stunning. It was a pretty quick one, it took us two hours to get to the top. The trail itself was easy and well maintained, the hard rating is due to the near constant elevation gain.

This trail was amazing. I went two nights 8/6-7. I suggest going two nights. Spending a whole day just relaxing is worth it.

I went up solo. It took Me quite a while to make it up. Start early and take breaks as needed. It’s not a race. The altitude was pretty rough for me. The trail is pretty rocky so bring solid foot wear. Also many parts of the trail are through thick brush. Long sleeves will save some scratches. On the way back down by the ponds past the creek ford I encountered moose. But I came up on the with no coverage or protection. The bull was chill enough that I could back off slowly and not spook it, but easily could have been bad. Be mindful out there.

The people up there were all great. Just a group of strangers all there to relax and enjoy the hot springs. Everyone was there for a great time. Don’t be uptight cause there will be drinking, probably nudity and a few were smoking pot.

I would suggest bringing foot wear you can wear in the spring. It’s great but the bottom and edges are super rocky. It’s very painful getting in and out. Sunscreen and bug spray cause flys and mosquitoes were all over me. Also don’t skimp on cold weather stuff. The days were very nice, but even early August as soon as the sun sets behind the mountains it got VERY cold.

on Ute Trail

5 days ago

Tourist trap. Comparable to Boulder’s Sanitas but with a looser and more narrow trail, heavier crowds, less shade, essentially nothing worth hiking to/seeing unless you just want a killer calf workout. Easily the worst hike I’ve done in Colorado.

on Cathedral Lake Trail

hiking
6 days ago

The hardest part is the last stretch before you top out to reach the lake, so be prepared for that. The switchbacks are very steep and in the sun. There were a LOT of gnats around the lake but the views were beautiful.

We started at 8am and the trail was pretty unpopulated. We ran into a LOT of people making their way up as we came down, including people blasting music from their phones (please do not blast music on trails).

Absolutely beautiful hike! Flowers/colors are amazing! We hiked in on 8/3 for 1 night.
Took us about 5 hours to get to the first camp site #19 and at least 30 minutes more to get to site #4 (our site). The hike from #19 to #4 may have been the most difficult part of the hike. We saw 3 moose, a few deer and a far off bear sunning itself in a rock near silver dollar lake! Rangers stopped us on our way and asked to see our permit, ID and bear canister. The springs were spectacular and surprisingly uncrowded. Took us 3.5 hours to hike out.

8 days ago

Great hike. I found it tough but glad I did it.

Not for the faint of heart. This trail has serious elevation change and the trail on the Maroon Bell side of the pass is full of rocks.

8 days ago

A great hike, incredible views and very strenuous. I thought I was doing well till a dog with 3 legs passed me up.....made it to the top & took gondola down.... best option.

Very easy and short hike to amazing views. Absolutely gorgeous! Waterfalls, river, tons of beautiful rocks, even a cave to go down into. Great places to have a picnic too! Favorite hike so far!

Took an easy day today—took gondola up Aspen Mountain then enjoyed the views and hiked this nature trail. Was a good choice as it’s easy to get winded at the higher altitude especially for us visiting from GA. Easy hike and great vistas. Enjoyed by all!

Did this hike a few years ago. Totally worth it!

Challenging, but totally worth it. It was a steady uphill with some switchbacks to start, followed by some serious rock navigation. The toughest part was the switchbacks up the mountainside around mile 2. Poles would be handy. the lake was gorgeous and peaceful.

hiking
10 days ago

Such a dope area to explore, saw some jerrys wearing helmets going down into the ice caves but I guess better safe than sorry. Go early to avoid the white people.

hiking
10 days ago

Nice to stretch your legs when driving independence pass

The first part of the hike was shaded but then after a while it got pretty hot. Also at the end we had some trouble finding the trail. Over all we thought the hike was fun for our family.

hiking
11 days ago

Friends and I hiked half of this trail (one way), from Crested Butte to Aspen on 8/1. We took Dolly’s shuttle to the trailhead. No restrooms at trailhead from this direction. The hike is beautiful. Flower season was early this year, but we still had many to view. The lupine smell amazing! Lots of water crossings, they weren’t as big as we had expected. It’s dry this year. I went through about 2 liters of water. I was carrying a filter, didn’t need to use it. Unfortunately, wildfire smoke was evident in the sky. I don’t normally use poles, but had them on this trip. Glad I did! The trail has a lot of loose rocks, especially above Crater Lake. We saw and heard many pika, fresh bear scat (we think), bees and a few hummingbirds. The trail was more crowded than expected, still wonderful. Great campsites and backcountry spots if you’ll be hiking part way or half, then back. We again used Dolly’s shuttle back to CB. Dolly’s arrangements need to be made well in advance. I would possibly plan this hike differently next time... but would love to see it again!

I am looking for someone who has actually hiked both the hot springs and conundrum/castle peaks. Looking to do this hike this weekend and would like information on trail conditions, snow on trail, recent weather, any tips, trail finding difficulty, etc. If anyone could comment back on here, I'd be super grateful! Can't find much information online.

Wonderful hike but it was tough for us two 50-something flatlanders with only one day acclimating. Loved lake.

Pretty trail but very confusing. There are a lot of trails and we couldn’t find the actual cave till we ran into a park ranger and she told us where to go. We eventually found it not far from the start but would have never found it without the rangers help.

Easy hike with a beautiful lake at the end. My dogs loved it! We went in the evening so it wasn’t busy

Hard but really rewarding with beautiful vast views and the lake at as a nice reward at the end. Difficult and moderate parts with beautiful waterfalls and wildflowers. Looking forward to doing it again. A fun hike with friends.

Beautiful waterfalls. Nice hike.

14 days ago

It’s a challenging hike,but worth it. Great views from the top.

Very long a lot of ups and downs but the lakes are pretty!!!

Gorgeous hike, quickly leave the trees for open hiking through fields of wildflowers surrounded by rugged peaks. Reminds me more of the Alps than a typical setting in the Rockies. BUT, and it’s a big but, it’s easy to forget in this range they the valleys are high and the ridges even higher - we got crushed by a massive hailstorm at 11:30am on our way down and even deep in the valley, there was no cover and a big hurting from nickel hail that accumulated thick on the trail. Respect the weather, and remember that the storms don’t always wait till the afternoon.

We agree with Kristen below. It’s rated as easy, and it is less than 2 miles but the second half is steep with nothing interesting at end but it is was good workout for a first day for a Class of 67.
Rick and Grayce
our calculator would put it at upper moderate rather than easy

definitely go counter clockwise.
took me and my friend 3 days 3 nights.
6 miles the first day, 7 miles the next and 12 miles & the last two passes the last day back to over flow parking lot.

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