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

Took my 3 kids the trail was great, beautiful views around the lake. Dogs loved it! only bad thing was that there weren't any signs that said to pay for parking, when we reached back after our 6 miles we had a 20$ parking ticket in the window. I say the sheriffs there should be after the bad guys not after people parking in a large empty parking spot doing exercise. It was our first time there, not welcoming. regardless I enjoyed the hike and it's what it's all about!

Now I know why this trail is so popular. Did this trail on 10/25. Beautiful day. Some icy patches, but did not need spikes. I want to go back and see this place again in winter, spring, and summer.

Snowshoed on 11/22. 8 mile dirt road to the trailhead was clear and I was able to slowly make it in a sedan but 4x4 would make it easier and quicker. Snow covered forest for the majority of the hike wad well packed and don't need snowshoes until you are about a mile or so out from the lake. I decided to make it up to the Continental divide trail but it was very slow going and frustrating to gain ground. can't recommend enough as the 360 view from the top had been one of my favorites. Push yourself that last mile up and you won't be disappointed. Even found some cell signal up there!

Super easy and beautiful!

2 days ago

My girlfriend and I, along with my best friend and his girlfriend, all tackled this bad boy last Sunday (12/9); and it was magnificent.

We got a relatively late start after making the roughly two-hour drive up from Fort Collins; beginning our snowshoeing trek around 12:30 pm and returning to our vehicle around 4:30 pm.

The road down to the actual trailhead was closed due to the amount of snow, so we added an additional 4 miles to our trip (approx. 6 miles round-trip). With the small parking lot being full, we just parked along State Hwy 14 without a problem.

The road leading up to the trailhead was somewhat steep, but we were blessed with blue skies the whole way up. And even though the temp dropped into the single digits near our trek's end, we were well prepared to bare the elements.

The Crags to the east of the trail provided us with some stupendous views as the sun crept down beyond the mountains, just illuminating the tops of these exceptional peaks. We made it all the way to the lake, but decided not to make the full loop around, for it was getting dark and with most of the hike being in the shade (and at least 10 degrees cooler), we decided to head back. We were fortunate enough to only have seen four to five other groups on the trail, which just added to the splendor of this amazing hike!

Would love to return in the spring or summer to see how different it is in another season!

Tip: Make sure you have your All Trails Map downloaded prior to the hike, for we almost took a wrong turn and got lost, as the trail is completely covered in snow.

Nice little hike, would do again!

3 days ago

Snowy for most of the trail this December. Wish I had brought my trekking poles. Beautiful sights from the top. Saw only two other folks.

Visited on a Saturday morning in December, only saw a handful of people. It was an easy outing.

3 days ago

Doable in regular hiking boots
Went on a Sunday at 11am and was moderately traveled
Lots of available parking

not sure what the previous post is talking about, this is not a 4x4 trail. Trail navigation is difficult in the snow there were many who turned back because the popular trail is a dead end near the lakes. I did make it to the lakes, but, I had to bushwhack through deep snow with snowshoes. I tried the pack the route on my way out so that others could find the way. good luck!

4 days ago

If you are looking for a hiking experience of a lifetime, look no further! Please be aware that this is a very difficult hike, the park ranger informed us that this is one of the most difficult hikes in Colorado primarily due to the very steep grade, and I have to agree. If you are ready to push your hiking abilities, this hike is for you! No words can describe the beauty of Black Canyon, and Warner Route gives you a perspective of this canyon which very few people have seen.

I hiked Warner route with a buddy of mine in early July. The temperatures during the day were just under 100F, so we waited until late afternoon (around 90F) to begin our descent into black canyon. I packed approx. 5L of water for the descent and I drank every bit of it. At the bottom we replenished our water supply at the Gunnison River with a water purifier. We cooled off in the river which was extremely refreshing! We brought hammocks to spend the night at the bottom of the canyon. I do not recommend hammocks as most of the trees at the bottom are kind of scrubby and not adequate for setting up a hammock. We trekked back up Warner Route mid-morning the next day. Near the end of our hike a small thunderstorm passed overhead, laying a foggy mist over the canyon; a view that left us in awe!

About the trail:
This trail is very diverse, landscapes and trail conditions change drastically throughout the hike. The beginning portion of the trail consists of tight switchbacks which eventually fade into a steep downward slope. The base of the trail changes continuously: dirt, sand, gravel, loose rocks, etc. Tree roots and large rocks are useful hand-holds. Keep your eyes on the trail ahead, it is easy to slip. Some parts of the trail are not very well marked. We took pictures of landmarks along the trail on our way down so that we could find our way back up when returning.

Here's a short video of our hike:

5 days ago

I always love this hike! Today was probably the most windy day I've had there thus far, at the lakes, but still beautiful! I started out around 9:40am, plenty of parking in the lot. I used my crimp-ons until just after nymph lake, then switched over to the snowshoes. There were quite a few people making it to Emerald lake with just the crimp-ons. That said there was a lot of post holing as well! I would recommend having your snowshoes with you. And to Arizona ( just moved here from AZ) have fun playing this winter! and maybe I'll see you snowshoeing next time;)!

Great hike. Wore spikes to nymph lake then switched to snowshoes for rest of way. Trail was fairly well packed but a step off the trail and you quickly realize how deep the snow is. Got to dream lake and some hikers were ice skating. Walked across frozen lake and pressed to emerald.. some elevations getting to dream and emerald but nothing too long. Wind was down which made for a nice walk in the woods.

Perfect training for CX or mountain bike sprints. Wide trails for most anyone, plus some singletrack for others. If it's a nice weekend expect a LOT of traffic on the trails and surrounding area trails.

Great trail to hike in the winter. Not difficult. It snowed that night before and micro spikes worked great.

8 days ago

Just up there today, winds out of the west with gusts that had to be 60 mph. Hike out past nymph lake was calm, but approaching dream lake winds really picked up.. high drifting past dream lake, without snow shoes you can’t get beyond the last hundred yards or so to emerald lake. Still a beautiful and awesome hike despite the winds. Only got up to 9F, gear held up nicely

Did this hike 11/30/18, started around 10 am. Was beautiful. Spikes and poles were helpful to about St Mary lake. Went a little further but snowshoes definitely are recommended for heading up any further. I will definitely be back with my snowshoes!

Beautiful hike for all skill levels.

9 days ago

Hiked 12/3. The hike from bear lake to dream lake is our favorite in the park, regardless of the season. Today was no exception. We took snowshoes with and used them the whole time. The hike from the parking lot to dream lake could be easily done with micro spikes. From there to lake Haiyaha will require snowshoes in its current state. Less traffic on this trail and recent snow makes it loose, narrow and uneven in a lot of places. You’ll have to stay tight and inside in a lot of places to keep from sinking a falling down the ridge.

With caution, it’s very doable. We are not super experienced in snowy mountains and managed just fine. It’s worth the trip.

Absolutely beautiful hike. I went early Friday morning and had the trail / glacier all to myself. I was glad I had my spikes and hiking poles. I was able to get quite a ways up the glacier. Snowshoes would have been helpful toward the top.

Beautiful. Trail is packed down at this time. Microspikes are helpful but probably safe without them. Beautiful.

10 days ago

loved it!

11 days ago

Nice show shoe, plenty of snow now.

11 days ago

Wind was intense once we reached Dream Lake! Got out of the wind by staying along the bank in the trees, but would've been much more difficult if we didn't have snowshoes.

Decent views. Cold around the lakes so don't quit. Snow shoes make it easier after dream lake. Emerald lake is gorgeous

12 days ago

Getting snow-packed in shady areas, with occasional ice. I didn’t need microspikes.....which is good since I didn’t have them with me.

Not at all crowded this morning. My dog and I saw seven people and nine dogs.....all friendly.

Beautiful hike! Easy! Great views!!!

Pretty icy but the lake at then end is beautiful and it’s an easy climb

Not to bad of a winter trail
Some ice

All right trail nice views at times

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