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

hiking
8 days ago

Absolutely beautiful hike. Lots of diverse wildflowers and trees. The lake is a perfect spot for a picnic lunch. Some small, steeper sections but lots of flat traverses as well.

hiking
10 days ago

I was pretty surprised at the high rating for this trail. Coming from Basalt, the first 1.6 miles are a great climb that end on a large open area; you are rewarded with fantastic views down valley. The next mile is an easy uphill climb where the views improve slightly at a few small lookouts.
After that, this hike is bland. The trail is flat and fully exposed—no tree cover, only small thorny shrubs. There are no comfortable stopping points, or large rock groupings to rest for a snack. I didn’t take any pictures, as most of the area was dry open fields of shrubs.
If you come from the Basalt area, stop at the first overlook and save your day for another activity.

backpacking
17 days ago

Note that directions to this trail take you to the Thomas Lakes TH, not the Hay Park TH. That's fine, because following the trail will take you to the Hay Park TH.

First and maybe best thing about this trail is the abundance of water to filter. 3 large streams and a half dozen other smaller ones mean you won't have to resort to filtering muck or hauling excessive amounts of water... a big plus.

First 1.5 miles is moderate, and the rest is easy. Mix of thick aspens, meadows of wildflowers and a few spots of expansive views gives the trail a nice mix. The large volume of butterflies is worth noting.

The trail shares a bit of private land and it is possible you may share the trail with a herd of cows. We didn't see any on day 1, but on day 2 we followed them on the trail for an hour and had to dodge fresh droppings.

While most of the trail is easy to follow, there are a few spots on the Hay Park TH side where the cows have made their own trail and it is possible you could end up off the trail and not know it

camping
19 days ago

My dog and I hiked up to the lakes mid-afternoon and spent the night before heading back down the following morning. I did this mid-week and while we crossed paths with 6 or so other groups on the trail, all 12 camp sites at the lakes seemed to be available when we arrived in the early evening. Good option for an overnight trip to a remote spot with relatively short hikes in and out. The road to the trailhead is in good shape and easily passable in a two-wheel drive.

If you have opportunity for just one hike in the Roaring Forks Valley/Aspen-Glenwood-Carbondale-Basalt area, this would be an excellent choice. Stunning mountain, lake, and valley views, abundant and varied wildflowers, a gentle slope that will get your heart pumping a bit with just a few short sections that are more strenuous, and alternating wooded and shady/open and sunny stretches. To get to the shore of the second lake, follow signs to campsite 6 and follow the short trail leaving it. Bring a camera, a liter of water per person, and a jacket or fleece—it can get chilly at the top even when it’s very warm at the base. Should take a person in decent shape about 4 hours round trip, including a 1/2 hour stop at the lakes.

backpacking
25 days ago

Hike this trail on 06/07/18 for our 10th wedding anniversary. Trail wasn't too busy and camping around the lake we were the only ones there as far as I could tell. Scenery up the trail is incredible. Being from Georgia and not experienced hikers, this was a pretty challenging hike for us (we also packed way too much crap in our packs). Steady climb up made for some sore muscles the next day but the views from the lake and the peace and quiet made it so worth it. I'd love to start earlier next time and just do a day hike all the way up to Mount Sopris. No way we would have made it with our packs.

This is a beautiful hike. not to many people on a Sunday. will go back to camp during the fall! Early crop of wildflowers up there.

Spectacular views!

hiking
1 month ago

I do this at least once per year. It's a great workout with beautiful views.

backpacking
1 month ago

My husband and I hiked this with our 5 year old and camped for 2 nights this past weekend. It was challenging and gorgeous and definitely worth it!! Hiking poles are a must! We drank water from the uppermost creek (using just a steripen), caught trout for dinner, and enjoyed the perfect weather. Up toward the end, the trail is more rock than dirt which was a bit tricky. The campsites are well marked and well spaced. We didn't encounter any wildlife other than birds and squirrels. It was quite windy at times but otherwise lovely. Wildflowers abound as the trail weaves through open spaces with spectacular views to aspen groves.

Definitely uphill most of the hike. But a great hike nonetheless. Views up top are spectacular and made it all worthwhile. Would rate it more ‘hard” than moderate but we are from New York City so no doubt the locals are more equipped to handle the uphill climb! Yes! We would do it again (and again).

hiking
1 month ago

Trail took about 90 minutes to get up, was gradually steep with a big incline at the top. View of Mt Sopris by the second lake was amazing! Lake was not crowded at all which made for an amazing day hike.

hiking
1 month ago

Hiked 5/29/18. Trail is clear with only a few snow patches off to the side at the top. Lake is unfrozen. Rocky trail with steady climb. Not crowded with an amazing payoff view at the top.

Amazing hike!!

backpacking
1 month ago

Took a little over two hours to hike up to the lakes. Lake is still mostly frozen over and lots of snow. There were plenty of dry spots to setup camp for the night though. Our camp got snowed on for about two hours during the day but then the sun came out strong. Great in and out trail for a one night backpack.

mountain biking
3 months ago

hard uphill. need very strong legs to bike this trail from basalt up

awesome bike workout

up hill all the way what a work out my first time I did the whole thing it's incredible

A very steep trail over a short distance. Views are OK, but there's much better in Colorado.

hiking
10 months ago

A pleasant hike and one of the best areas for aspen in the autumn.

Long but not too strenuous, great views and lovely clear lakes at the finish line!

hiking
11 months ago

Scenic trail with lots of wildflowers, aspen groves, and some nice vistas along the way. By August 5th, some of the flowers had already died off below 10,000 feet, but were still in full bloom as you got closer to the lakes. We had clear skies in the forecast, but did get caught in a brief hail/lightning storm on the way up. Fortunately there is only a stretch of about a 1/2 mile where you're out in the open without any tree cover. I would agree with others that this felt closer to moderate than easy. We went on a Friday and only came across three groups on the trail and about 20 cars in the parking lot. Maybe it's more heavily trafficked on the weekend?

I didn't expect the level of pain that this "day hike" offered. Should be rated as "hard" in most ways: starts steep in beginning, slightly mellows out in middle third, then ends steep. I came up with a full 4 miles but maybe it was all the panting I was doing.

hiking
11 months ago

Fantastic trail with consistent beautiful views. Hiked this two weeks ago and It was our first solid hike of the season. While the elevation gain isn't crazy, there are a few steep inclines. Very rocky in some areas. I would classify this as moderate as opposed to easy. So if you're looking for a fairly challenging day hike, this is perfect.

hiking
11 months ago

Fun trail

backpacking
11 months ago

Beautiful trail! First 1.5 is all uphill, but after that it's a great hike! Lots of clear rivers, beautiful views, huge aspen! Not a lot of places to put a tent- i.e. Our placement was 1 of 2 close to water- but definitely worth it! Lightly traveled, some horse manure to dodge! Do g be confused with the capital peak trailhead- same parking lot- hay Park has a sign and capital peak does not

Beautiful wildflowers along the way up to 2 scenic lakes. Steep in parts but a wonderful hike!

Saturday, July 01, 2017

Wonderful trail, beautiful flowers and have done it many times and I have enjoyed it so much

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Very nice views, beautiful lakes, easy grade. If the lakes are too chilly for a swim, try the Dinkle Lake picnic area near the trailhead.

hiking
Monday, June 26, 2017

Great views. Very steep.

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