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

hiking
5 days ago

Went up on a Mother's Day hike to the Crystal Mill taking the low road in. I let the ladies return the same way, but I completed the Lead King Loop which goes up this road. Above 10,500ft things were still pretty snow-covered. Not impossible without, but wished I had brought my snowshoes. Feet got really wet, glad I brought extra pairs of socks.

The road was completely obscured by snow near the top, so I got a little lost and followed the Silver Creek watershed too far up, had to backtrack. Wasn't too hard.

Many creek crossings, maybe 6-7. I did see fresh bear tracks in the snow and mud about 1.5 miles up into Lead King Basin from the town of Crystal.

All in all, a beautiful hike despite the challenges and discomforts of the early springtime.

hiking
22 days ago

I like this trail as it’s close to home and still a bit of a challenge. The first mile or so is the most difficult on the rocky hillside. I’ve never seen too many people here but it is trafficked in the summer months. Takes you through different terrain. You basically go from desert to forest to meadow. I have taken the trail to the old cabin but the trail is not well marked and it’s hard to tell if you’re on public or private property. I take my dog and she loves it. Pack a snack and have rest in the shade. Just did this hike and the snow has cleared.

hiking
4 months ago

All Trails needs to change the elevation gain on this hike as we ascended almost 1500 feet in a little over one and a half miles starting from the road ( about half of the trail one way). As of January 8, 2017, the trail has about a foot of snow on it with about half of it being packed down. Snowshoes would be helpful but are not really needed.

hiking
6 months ago

While moving towards the trailhead you enter a aspen tree tunnel, and as it clears you are greeted by grand views of forest, creeks, and Capitol peak in the distance. The trail as some points I found a bit confusing to follow, due to cattle grazing trails in the area, but it is not hard to stay oriented in the direction you need to go. Beautiful open fields filled with flowers, delicious snow melt creeks, and towering rocks made this an unforgettable hike for me. I just went for the day, but it seems like a great place to stay overnight. Also the road to the trail was under-repair, so it may be nicely paved by now. Cheers

Would not recommend the effort is insane and nothing special at the end.

hiking
8 months ago

Tough hike, stated 5.5-6 miles to the lake seems MUCH longer but I guess not. If you don't enjoy steep ups and downs use Ditch TRAIL which cuts into Capitol a few miles in, not as much water for the dogs though.

hiking
8 months ago

This is my Favorite 14er so far amazing hike in to base camp. Nice gradual gain for carrying in all your gear to drop at camp. We summited the following morning leaving camp around 4:45 and Summiting around 9 am. The hike to the summit is not for the faint of heart very difficult and technical and has lots of loose rock. Crossing Knife Edge is the most talked about part, but I found it to be not as bad as the traverse across the back of the summit and climb up the ridge to the summit. All in all great hike and climb. I would recommend a 2 day trip as we did to make the summit round trip a success.

Loved this trail! Gorgeous wildflowers. We hiked from the Crested Butte side off Gothic Road. We did not make the loop because of lightning. The wildflowers were still spectacular on August 10.

Nice hike along the creek

We were in Redstone for a wedding and this trail was conveniently located right near the Redstone Inn where we were staying. I did some research on this trail beforehand and to get to the trail head it is very recommended that you have an SUV type vehicle. Getting from the main road to the trail head requires a drive up a two-track dirt/gravel trail that is used to access the trail head/water treatment plant. Once at the trail head it is very noticeable where the trail starts. We only hiked about a mile in the trail because we had to be back for the wedding later that day. But it's a very gorgeous trail, it opens up initially with some great views of the valley. After that you're mostly in wooded areas that have stream crossings along with waterfalls. Only going that mile in, we had a 500 ft. elevation increase so you're constantly going up. I would definitely want to come back and go further along the trail, including a hike in and camp.

backpacking
9 months ago

I would definitely do this again, but be warned: on the west side this is a very lightly used trail with few markers and many obstacles. Fallen trees, overgrown brush, and many times the trail abruptly stops and you may spend time searching for the path further along. Make sure you have a map and compass, though the most updated map has incorrect ISO lines.

The east side seems to be more traversed and easier to navigate, coming from Capital Creek.

We went west to east from Avalanche, up over the pass, then down to Williams Lake. A beautiful hike, through meadows, past waterfalls, and breathtaking views at the top. We tried to leave markers as we went, many had toppled over.

It took us about 6 hours, spending 1 hour at the top to admire the views. It can be done in about 4.

10 months ago

Nice trail with lots of shade. Views about 1.75m up. Steep sections. Spring about .6m up.
Not super exciting, but nice.

hiking
11 months ago

This trail has a nice meadow at the top of a steep hike. Its nice to bike up to the trailhead from carbondale.

hiking
11 months ago

Hiked 6.6.17 watch the weather storms move in late a.m early pm but last 30 minutes or so stay protected in forest it'll pass river is awesome , meadows beautiful look @ the back side of maroon bells great warm up hike for more difficult terrain

We hiked 8.5 miles in and out. Beautiful hike. Not very crowded. Incredibly hot!

hiking
Thursday, May 11, 2017

Steep! It's actually 4.2 miles to the end but the meadow is the best part (about 3 miles in). Pack lots of water and a lunch to enjoy in the meadow. Love the unique view of Mt. Sopris and the aspen groves.

hiking
Thursday, May 11, 2017

We've hiked this a few times in the Autumn. We go for about an hour and then head back. Gorgeous and not strenuous.

hiking
Saturday, October 08, 2016

really nice in the woods

Monday, August 08, 2016

Trail was very beautiful. But it is not a moderate hike. Forest service rates this as very difficult.

hiking
Thursday, July 14, 2016

Access to trail head is poor. Have to hike up a utility road for about a mile. Trail itself was hard but incredible views of the canyon walls. Improve access road so more visitors can park at trailhead.

hiking
Thursday, July 14, 2016

Very nice day hike, started off easy and became more difficult around the fork with the hell roaring trail.

hiking
Sunday, May 29, 2016

One of our favorites for a moderately challenging hike! Also great fishing once you get to Duley park. Perfect blend of shade, sun, water and views.

hiking
Thursday, September 17, 2015

Nice hike in late August. Beatiful alpine meadow full of flowers at 10000 feet. Expansive views.

camping
Tuesday, September 15, 2015

East creek awesome, gift creek bad, use avalanche creek trailhead to access upper avalanche creek

hiking
Sunday, September 28, 2014

Steep climb most of the way with a meadow clearing about ⅓ of the way. The first part of the trail follows the creek and you get to see a few small waterfalls. Very beautiful hike! At the top you arrive at Lily Lake and can see Maroon Bells from there.

hiking
Thursday, August 21, 2014

This might be the most beautiful trail in Colorado. You DO NOT have to climb the peak to have an amazing time. The trail to Capitol Lake is 12 miles RT. The trail conditions are amazing. The hike is moderate with some ups and downs.

hiking
Tuesday, June 24, 2014

This is a steep trail for most of the hike up. There is a small creek that you cross over and can get water for your dogs, but otherwise, if its a hot sunny day, I recommend bringing LOTS of water. You are exposed to the sun most of the hike. The view of Sopris at the top of the meadow is amazing!

on Placita Trail

hiking
Saturday, September 14, 2013

Great Cardio work out. Not much for a view because the trees are to thick. Bear country!

hiking
Tuesday, July 09, 2013

Steep, dusty and rocky for most of the trail. You can hear but not often see Perham Creek running in the canyon along the trail. The sound alone is peaceful though. The hike up is worthwhile once you reach the top, where it opens up into a large meadow and you get a great view of Mt. Sopris.

hiking
Friday, September 14, 2012

Awesome and beautiful hike. Very tough if not in shape. We rode horses and had to stop often as it is a pretty consistant climb. We didnt get to the 14er peak, but did the loop below and that was tough enough. Good trail for the most part. Great hike to get your heart pumping. Great views and plenty and streams to cross.

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