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

Hiked this on a Saturday and it was busy (7/21/18). We got there at 6:30 and parked in the upper lot. This was my first 14er and the views were so beautiful. It's steep but worth it at the top. The only negative was other hikers who had their music playing loudly on speakers, it would've been courteous to have headphones instead.

beautiful views!

This was my first 14’er since moving to Denver a month ago and it was amazing. The trails are exceptionally well laid out and if you are a first timer like me, it’s nice to have a trail with lots of people along the way. It took me 3.5 hours round trip. I went up in 2.0 hours and down in 1.5. The scenery is beautiful and the views from the top are incredible.

Beautiful hike! My friends GPS said it was 8.4 miles though. Nicely maintained trail until you get to the last 1/2 mile or so, then it's rocks and scrambling so make sure you are prepared for that and if you choose to bring a dog please make sure you have them leashed (required anyway but especially on the rocks as they can easily bump in to someone and knock them over). It is steep in sections to give the person in front of you some space on the way down (if you fall and you are right on their heels, you'll take them out with you). We arrived at 5:00 am and got the last spot in the main lot, but you can park on the road and I am told there is an upper lot as well. Wear layers for sure and bring lots of water, The boardwalk can be slippery early in the morning. Hiking poles are helpful. Also there is 1 creek crossing, the water is low right now so no problem just hopping rocks to get over. It's a great hike overall, plan to be out there for several hours and have fun!

21 hours ago

Great first 13er hike. Went early and it wasn’t busy.

Nice quick trail off of Guanella Pass that isn't too hard. I arrived at 11:30 am and found a spot in the upper lot after driving up the 4wd road without trouble. I have been spoiled by being able to hike mid-week all summer; this trail was SUPER crowded. Dogs everywhere (many off leash, but there were no leash signs and the majority were well-behaved) and I was constantly having to step to the side to let people go by. Wildflowers were gorgeous!

Great hike! We followed this trail up, then continued on to Torrey’s. The summit to Gray’s definitely isn’t as steep as Torrey’s, but both offer great views and a fun hike. Defiantly bring lots of water. Conditions are all clear. It’s definitely not an easy hike but we did see families with younger children making their way.

Hiked today (Saturday). Got to upper parking lot around 9am and was able to find a spot. Gravel road was tricky to maneuver in a few places. We were in a all wheel drive Honda Pilot. Hike is beautiful and the wild flowers were stunning!! Got more crowded as the day went on. Everyone was friendly and seemed to be enjoying themselves. Have also hiked this in the fall when the aspens were at their peak and it is breathtaking! A great hike summer or fall!

Pick. Up. After. Your. Dog. And don’t leave the bag on the trail. It really ruins those wildflower views. Rude.

Also, every dog here is off leash. Pretty sure they are supposed to be leashed here. People were letting their dogs run like crazy and the trail is pretty narrow.

Great hike, gorgeous views, but it seems like the people that use this one don’t really care about ruining someone else’s experience.

Really enjoyed this 13ner. A bit windy toward the top. Will definitely do it again. Nice enough to trail run most of it.

2 days ago

Not difficult but good workout. I clocked closer to 8 miles. 360 degrees of stunning views. Friend and I had trail and top of mountain to ourselves. Some rocky areas so watch your footing there. Weather today not an issue. No wind at top even, but still, go prepared. Really spectacular.

Beautiful 1st Fourteener! From the saddle, stow your poles and scramble to the summit.

2 days ago

It’s more like 7-7.5 miles round trip. I would plan at least a good 6-7hours for the hike. Also plan on stopping a bit, incline is quite steep and rocky

Great trail! Beautiful lakes, wildflowers, wildlife and mountains. Mileage is 9.5 mi r/t to second lake with increased elevation. It’s a push to the final lake, and save food, water and energy for the final mile back to the trailhead because the hike down to the creek is tough to hike back up at the end of 10 miles! We started early to avoid the heat, but there were people headed out as we finished with one 12oz bottle of water! Please be prepared with at least a liter of water, electrolytes and snacks...we live in the mountains and we needed all these...flatlanders will really need them!

3 days ago

Beautiful, easy hike.

We love this trail! Right now the wildflowers are blooming and it’s really pretty. Definitely park in the lower parking lot unless you have a 4 wheel drive. It can be a little chilly on top.

3 days ago

FWIW, I am 66 and made it to the top with the help of an oxygen botte. A beautiful area, well worth the effort. Hiking up to wear the bouldering starts is not all that difficult. Up to that point would be a nice day hike in and off itself. In fact, depending on what kind of shape you are in, you might want to do that one day, recover, and then go to the very top a couple or so days later. What makes the hike difficult is that last 1000 feet or so up through the rocks to the top. I think that part took me two hours up and down. I have been up other 14ers, but it has been a while. In my memory, Bierstadt was the easiest up to where the bouldering started, but the "final assent" was easier at some other 14ers. Heavily trafficked. I started a little late, around noon, and probably crossed paths with 50 people on their way down. It took me 7 hours total, but I was pretty slow on the way down. I was probably the oldest person hiking. I saw one person who looked to be in his mid-50's. Everyone else seemed to be early 40s or younger. The median age was probably early 30's. In my younger days, I probably could have done it in 5-6 hours. Consider carrying a can of oxygen if you are from sea level or in my age range.

Beautiful trial - I do a lot of hikes and prefer to do the hard ones , and I would actually rate this trail as more “hard” than “moderate.” I go quickly and summited in 1 hour and ran down in 30 min.

The incline is significant in parts which is fantastic, but the wind really makes it challenging. The wind is also why I only gave it 4 Stars, as at times it was unpleasant and almost made me fall over!

Otherwise, this is a GREAT workout if you push yourself and the views are amazing for being an hour from southern Denver.

When you park in the lot you can go straight up the dirt path as a short cut (but a steep shortcut) or take the service road up to the trail head (it’s on the left and the sign faces away from the road).

Awesome trail. Pretty difficult unless you hike trails on the regular. Lots of wildlife everywhere as well. We hiked down from summit lake to the Chicago lakes.

Beautiful hike! It's a steady incline almost all the way, so it's definitely a bit of a challenge, but nothing too steep. would recommend this hike to anyone!

4 days ago

Overall, a great hike. Went on a Wednesday and got there a little after 8 and didn’t have any crowds. The views don’t change much as you climb but the views are spectacular! Hit a good amount of wind about halfway up that caused some worry if I should turn around but I ended up pushing through as I saw others on the trail and they didn’t mention any unsafe conditions. If you usually eat a snack at the turnaround point, maybe plan to eat a heavy breakfast in case you aren’t able to sit and relax at the top (bc of the wind). It gets rocky at some points so if you have knee or ankle issues, wear the appropriate gear.

Perfect for our first 14’er!!

amazing trail. The terrain is easy, but with the elevation this is not quite an "easy" hike like some others I've seen on this app. There was still some snow at the top, and with the rising temps it was a bit slippery coming down, but well worth the climb to get the 360 degree views.

Did this with Evans! Amazing this one was an easy 14er!

Overall: This 14er was amazing! I was absolutely in love with the views all the way up. Wild flowers still pepper the trail and you have amazing views of multiple lakes.

Timing: We left our home on Monday at around 5:15 am and made it to the trailhead at 7:15 am. We summited right at 2 hours, although many around us said it took them closer to 3 or 4, and then sped down the mountain in 1 hour, for a total hiking time of 3 hours!

Parking: Do not let other reviews scare you. If you are hiking on a weekday, parking is easy, especially if you arrive earlier in the morning. The lot was full but there was plenty of parking on the road right next to the lot.

Difficulty: The first mile of the hike was nice and flat, followed by 2 miles of steady uphill, and approximately 0.7 miles of scaling large rocks at the top. Total distance, tracked on my Garmin Vivoactive, was 7.5 miles roundtrip.

Popularity: It was not nearly as busy as I had expected and the other hikers we met were nothing but friendly! You are certainly not going to hike alone, unless you leave early enough to make the summit for sunrise. But, based off of my other hiking experiences in Colorado, this was by far not at crowded.

Other: Bring a snack for the top of the mountain and at least 40 oz of water! I wore Hoka running shoes and they provided plenty of traction to make it up and down safely. I also had on yoga pants, a long sleeve t-shirt, and a light jacket. We had not weather problems on our hike though, so warmer dress could be necessary if colder conditions occur.

5 days ago

This Fire Lookout is now a private campsite rentable through the US Forest Service. The people in the lookout tower are not FS employees. They are paying guests. It's the paid campers whose cars are parked at the gate. We should all try to respect the privacy of these campsites so that the guests can get the most out of the experience and if the guests enjoy it, it will be a profitable venture for the Forest Service that has just taken a hefty budget cut. Let's try to be respectful by not expecting to tour a camper's private space. If we want to tour the tower, we should rent it, and in doing so, we will help to preserve this really cool history. Thanks!

did this hike last weekend and was surprised how really beautiful it was!! wildflowers for days and gorgeous views at every turn. The top (3rd) lake is the prettiest and not as many people. Took my Rav 4 up the 4WD road to the trail head....not too bad. :)

I loved the hike. Only went as far as the reservoir because we started late. Go early to avoid the heat because you’ll need it for the incline areas. It was a “good” hard hike. The difficulty was due to the incline at altitudes of 10,800. But we’ll worth the challenge...you will say that at the end. Careful bringing dogs..,lots of rock I would believe to be hurtful on there pads.

I did this as my first 14er over the weekend. I did quite a bit of research before tackling this. I am not in the best shape of my life, but this was do-able for me. I got to the trail at about 4:15am and cars were slowly but surely coming in. I realized I forgot my headlamp and thought my eyes would adjust to the dark. I ended up giving that dream as the beginning of the trail was icy and had a bunch of random puddles. I took A LOT of short breaks. On the way up everyone was nice and encouraging. Once you're done with the first part of the trail, there's no coverage for taking bathroom breaks. I was worried about altitude sickness so I ended up taking in a lot of water and having to pee like 7 times. Luckily, I went early and only saw a handful of people on the way up. The summit was crowded but everyone up there was super friendly. The walk down was ridiculous. I've never seen so many people on a trail in my life (although I'm coming from Michigan). There must have been hundreds of people starting at like 9-10am. I'm glad I went early and honestly would go even earlier next time. People were super loud, playing music, and some people were pretty rude considering you had to share the trail. It was an eye-opening experience in more than one way. The whole trip took me about 6 hours, I spent about 30 minutes up at the summit.

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