Explore the most popular dogs on leash 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.

hiking
1 day ago

Beautiful scenery the entire walk and quite spectacular at the top. Considering the low mileage the solitude at the top was surprising.

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

hiking
2 days ago

We were told by the bus driver that Crater Lake was a lot more dried up this year, and that was completely obvious once we saw the lake. I’m sure it would have been a lot more attractive if the water were higher. But pretty views throughout the hike! Saw a ton of families, so should be doable for most kiddos. And if you have a dog, they’ll probably enjoy cooling off in the lake at the top.

I’m physically active so I thought the trail itself was mostly easy, but we flew in from GA ~18 hours before the hike and I definitely felt some negative affects of the altitude adjustment. If you’re not used to high altitudes, bring plenty of water and remember to take deep breaths.

My first solo trip. Weather was perfect and the trail lived up to all my expectations. CLockwise and glad I did!

hiking
3 days ago

What a great way to get away into the mountains fast! We drove from Carbondale in the morning on a Wednesday in late August. The 3 of us had the full spectrum of hiking experience, so we hiked to the pace of our slowest friend—and we had a great hike! We parked at the hairpin turn (the upper trailhead) that you encounter before Independence Pass—plenty of parking there and it’s a paved surface. So we did the hike counter-clockwise and reached Independence Lake after 2 hours of very slow hiking. My friend has a heart condition, so we’re happy she could come so far! We hiked to the saddle above the lake and stopped for a half hour as we watched a herd of mountain goats approach and pass us on the trail. We decided to turn back to the car so our friend could rest but my athletic husband decided to trail run the rest of the loop (so he continued on past Lost Man Lake). So we split up and by the time I reached the parking lot for the Lost Man Lake Campground, he was already there (albeit very sweaty). I’m posting this long narrative hoping it shows just how awesome of a trail this is—a short morning hike, a trail run loop, a picnic spot, wildlife viewing, wildflowers even in late August, a camping option, clearly marked trail, and easy access.

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!

Only gave it 4 starts because I didn’t get to see the end of the trail. Was the first out there and have seen animal droppings and tracks. including bear and deer. Had to turn around because my family’s waiting for breakfast.

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.

Bunch of knobs on the trail

The hike is great, lake is underwhelming. Views along the hike are awesome.

For those of us not used to the altitude (we are from GA) this was a pretty difficult hike on the way to Crater Lake. Mostly uphill and very rocky. Took about an hour hike to get to Crater Lake but the view was gorgeous! Plan on packing a lunch or snacks and taking in the view—and a short rest! Definitely want to get there early as it gets very crowded on the narrow, rocky trail as the day progresses. We got to Highlands at about 8:15 to take the bus up to Maroon Bells. Go early—very popular destination! Bring lots of water too.

We arrived to start the loop on Saturday morning at 5:30 am. Were greeted with overnight lot full sign. There were two parking spots in the overflow area just before the overnight lot. When we walked thru the overnight lot, there was one open spot. When we returned on Tuesday both of those parking areas were full. You might have to check out the other overflow parking area to find a parking spot.
We did the loop CW to West Maroon pass first. We did this because one hiker was not acclimated, and this direction is not as steep. The valley was crowded with hikers and runners up to the pass. The camp sites between West Maroon and Frigid Air are about 1/4 mile off the trail in the trees. There is a stream for water between the trail and campsites.
Thunderstorm started at 6 pm and rained and sleeted for a couple of hours. Intermittent rain thru the night. Only about 800 ft elevation change from camp to Frigid Air pass, a 100 yard section was steep and slick from the rain, so it was a relatively easy morning hike. 2100 ft elevation change downhill into the next valley.
We camped just after the intersection with the Geneva lake trail. Several nice camp sites in the area and water is close at the river.
Third day was a tough one. First 2170 ft elevation change up to Trail Rider pass. 1700 ft elevation change down into the Snowmass lake area. Then 800 ft elevation change up to our next campsite. The area was dry due to the summer conditions, so a lot of streams were dried up. There is water in Snowmass lake but we didn't need water at the time. We didn't really want to pull water out of the swamp, though the beaver dam was busted and it was flowing. At the campsites halfway up to Buckskin pass, there were two good streams for water.
Fourth day another roughly 800 ft elevation change to Buckskin pass, then close to 3000 ft downhill to the parking lot.
Outside of the main valley the trail was not crowded. Beautiful flowers, lakes and mountain scenery. Lots of animals, pikas, marmots, deer and a mountain goat guarding Buckskin pass.
Doing the trail in the CW direction was right of us, so the unacclimated hiker was able to make it. But it does make the last half of the hike the hard section. If you are a flatlander and live at low elevation like me, I do recommend spending a 3 or 4 days to acclimate before doing high altitude hiking.

Beautiful hike the entire way. It took us 3.5 hours round trip. Well worth the effort. Just a friendly reminder to bring moleskin for blisters!

on Cathedral Lake Trail

hiking
7 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).

on Crater Lake Trail

hiking
7 days ago

I found the low level of the lake and the dirty water to be a little underwhelming. The view of the surrounding mountains is very nice, as is the aspen forest on the way in.

on Lost Man Trail

hiking
7 days ago

My favorite hike! Majestic views with lovely lakeside picnic spots. Makes for a wonderful day in the mountains. Two-car
shuttle is perfect with starting point at Linkin Lake/Lost Man TH and second car awaiting at Lost Man Campground/TH below:)

Pretty neat!

Great hike up to the 3.0 mike mark. Up to that point really nice blend of single track, nicely shaded trail and a river at the start and after two miles. After 3.0 miles trees are down and it is very hard to pass or even tell where the trail goes. However, before you get there could not recommend the Difficult trail more!

hiking
9 days ago

Hiked it today with family, 4 hrs round trip including 30 mins for lunch, vertical comes at you fast in first hour, but manageable if you stay aerobic. This was my fourth or fifth time hiking American Lake, great for our first day, family in from East Coast, I came from the Okanagan in Canada. Certainly not one of the prettiest alpine lakes I have hiked to, in my opinion if the American Lake hike workout is your goal, do Cathedral instead

Doing this loop at the end of the week and was wondering if bear canisters were required.

Did it CCW......Was a very hard brutal and at times scary climb to a couple of the passes. Fridge Air was steep as hell and very loose rock for this 67 year old man we had great weather not sure I could do it in rough weather wind and rain you know...would slide right off. 4 days 3 night .....but loved it and may do it again CW

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.

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!

hiking
10 days ago

Go early to beat the crowds and dress in layers.

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
11 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
11 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
12 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.

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