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

No mosquitoes the mosquitoes are gone. Beautiful but super long hike. It’s more like 13.2 miles to the lake and back and we didn’t even go all the way down to the lake.

hiking
rocky
washed out
2 months ago

hiking
2 months ago

great trail yet strenuous. awesome lake and mountains around. camped there 9/8. no mosquitoes no bugs. weather could not be better. saw big horn and deer in campground. going next time with a fish pole but not until late summer early fall do to those blood sucking insects i hear about in posts.

hiking
2 months ago

My boyfriend and I did this as a day hike. We are from Texas (low elevation) and Did this while visiting CO and it was hard but doable. The worst of it was at the very top And I felt like I couldn’t exert any more and took many breaks to catch my breath and slow my heart rate again . But it was so worth pushing through the lake at the top is amazing and that is an understatement. It seemed that many people camp at the top and it would have been so much fun if we had time to do that. We completed it in roughly 7hours total and headed to Valley View Hot Springs to soak after working hard. Solid 10/10 day even though this hike was rough there at the top.

Great hike- we did the traverse from Crestone Peak. Follow the cairns and make sure you’ve studied the route and are prepared to be exposed for a while.

hiking
rocky
2 months ago

hiking
blowdown
over grown
3 months ago

Wonderful trail and gorgeous lake. Quite a few trees blown down and across the trail. I’d recommend wearing pants - the trail is overgrown and I got stung by a bee who got caught between my ankle and my boot. Otherwise highly recommended!

hiking
bugs
3 months ago

Backpacked and camped here 8/10. Our original plan was to summit Challenger Point and Kit Carson Peak. Unfortunately summiting wasn't in the cards due to crappy weather. The trail is steep in sections and I agree that the mosquitos were out of control. I bathed myself in DEET and it only worked for a short time. Camped just below Willow Lake. Camp site was nice except for some brazen chipmunks who were extremely interested in us. We also had a curious deer stop by our site to check us out. Overall a nice time would come back to summit those 14ers.

so good! make sure you study the trail

hiking
bugs
3 months ago

Backpacked and camped here from 7/26-7/28 and hiked challenger and Kit Carson in the middle. The mosquitos were ABSOLUTELY TERRIBLE!! The lake was gorgeous and it pained us that it was so buggy we hardly spent any time there. All times of day - all over your body, constantly flying into your food - they were the worst mosquitos I’ve ever seen and I grew up on the east coast. If you bring full body coverage and some serious deet, or come at a different time of year, I’m sure this is a really pleasant place to hike and camp. Despite the bugs, the camping area right below the lake was surprisingly full. I wouldn’t worry about finding a spot, but it definitely didn’t feel secluded. There was also a search party for a man who had gone missing on Kit Carson/Challenger a few days prior and a helicopter scanning the area both days. If you’re planning on ascending higher, take the standard route and bring a buddy, please! Views and climb were fantastic though and the bugs dissipated around 12.5 elevation Perhaps a better fall hike :)

hiking
3 months ago

Beautiful. As per other reviews, lots of mosquitos. 10.2 miles according to all trails

hiking
bugs
3 months ago

The trail itself is one of the better I’ve been on this year. Forestry service had their hands full with all the avalanches this year. The bugs. Oh my goodness the bugs. You better have a good reason to be going up the trail! The view is amazing. The fishing is awesome. But I had on long sleeves. Pants. A head net. And covered myself in 100% deet. And my body is still covered in hundreds of mosquito bites. It also rained on us every afternoon around 3:00 all 4 days we were there. Still a great weekend in my books!!

backpacking
bugs
4 months ago

Remember to pack bug spray for the mosquitoes, I cannot stress that enough! The mosquitoes are absolutely swarming and are hungry! The trail itself is gorgeous, quiet, and amazing. There were more than enough dispersed camping sites for those looking to backpack, with about three of them being near the start of the trail, three more near the fork, and then plenty dotting the path as you head up to the lake in some beautiful areas. The trail is clear all the way to the top, but those mosquitoes are really swarming along it, so bring that bug spray!

hiking
4 months ago

Great hike, but the second you enter the town of Crestone, to the top of the lakes, the mosquito’s don’t stop and they are thick as I have ever seen- so come prepared with full clothing and plenty of Deet. Otherwise the trial is clear the entire way, plenty of water running over the falls and the lake is full. Still a beautiful hike.

hiking
4 months ago

Great day hike to a real nice alpine lake. Not super challenging but right before the head wall there a dual log bridge over a high and fast running Willow Creek that was wet and slippery. I was solo so just to be safe scooted across on my butt. It wasn’t the manly thing to do and my rear got a little wet but way better than slipping off into some very cold water. Yes the mosquitos are bad from the second you step out of your vehicle at the trail head all the way to the lake, so bring some kick butt insect repellent.

hiking
bugs
4 months ago

Hiked this trial with my 10 year old daughter this summer(2019). It was a great trail and kicked out butts. It had amazing views and vast terrain. The only bad thing is I twisted my ankle half way through the hike and we ended up turning around. I'd love to eventually go back and finish the trial.

hiking
4 months ago

The hike itself was pretty great, however the mosquitos were AWFUL. Think in the thousands. Really hard to enjoy the hike when your swatting at mosquitos the entire time.

backpacking
bugs
over grown
rocky
snow
4 months ago

Stayed the night up at the lake last night which was nice. There are really bad mosquitoes 90% of the trail which is why I’m rating 3 stars. Very beautiful in the higher elevations of the trail.

backpacking
4 months ago

Spent the past couple days hiking this trail. It’s all clear up to the top and a beautiful hike, but the mosquitoes are out in force! Bring lots of bug spray. Also there is a fantastic spot to camp out at just past the fork about a quarter mile in on the left. There’s a big boulder to hide out under which makes it a good spot to take shelter for any unpredicted storms too.

hiking
bugs
4 months ago

The trail was clear to the top and absolutely beautiful. Make sure you wear bug spray though. The mosquitos are out and they’re hungry.

hiking
rocky
4 months ago

Incredible hike. Leave very early, as it’s about 3-3.5 hours up, then 2.5-3 hours down. Perfect day hike for the more adventurous soul!

hiking
4 months ago

One of the most beautiful hikes we have ever taken! I agree with others that it surely must be longer the mileage posted. Garmin hiking gps gave 10.25 miles RT. My phone app recorded over 11 miles RT whereas my husband’s recoded closer to what is listed here. Wild flowers are coming into bloom, snow is mostly gone, with trekking poles all was manageable. Just long, but memorable. Would like to return in the fall when the aspens turn golden.

Beautiful trail along the creek. We had to turn back before reaching the lake due to weather but made it pretty far to a nice waterfall. Brought snowshoes and did not need them. Passed a few snow fields with no problem. There were 2 water crossings that we were able to pass over fine using the natural log bridges (water was low enough thankfully). The avalanche debris threw us off for a minute but then we found the trail to the left easily- just had to navigate through some fallen aspens!

hiking
bridge out
4 months ago

This is a fantastic hike if you ever get a chance to explore the Sangres. I made it up to the wilderness area about half way up to the lake but the second bridge was flooded from the snow melt. Although I wasn't able to safely get up to the top, there were still plenty of opportunities to snag some awesome photos and take in the surrounding peaks. I will be back to camp and get to the top...when the bridges aren't flooded.

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