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

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hiking
2 days ago

Great hike but closer to 10-12 miles round trip depending where you start. We started near the mailboxes and it was about 11 miles round trip. Fall is the best time to go! There is a lot of atv traffic but easy enough for people to pass each other. Town of Crystal is adorable. It does cost $10/person to go down to the waterfall near the mill but the Family that owns the land restores the mill out of their own pocket so I'd suggest donating or paying that $10 because its only a matter of time until this is off limits to the public.

Seriously way too many cars jeeps and it is 10 bucks to walk down to the water in front of the mill.

hiking
5 days ago

Hiked this beauty on Friday, 9/14. Left Denver at 7am and hit the trail/road by 10:45. The little parking lot beyond the mailboxes was empty! But I DID notice some cars parked on the side of the rugged road leading up to the parking lot, so even if the lot’s full, but you don’t wanna start at the mailboxes (it’s a pretty steep half-mile hike from there to the trailhead), you have options along the way.

The hike itself is super easy-going. There were a few short inclines, but nothing terribly difficult. Otherwise it was relatively flat! I’d rate the hike as easy-moderate due to the distance, but it only took me about an hour and a half to get to the mill, and I stopped quite a bit to take photos!

The road follows the Crystal River which is absolutely gorgeous, and (appropriately) crystal clear. There were some folks rollin by in ATVs, dirt bikes, and even 4x4 trucks and SUVs, but it honestly didn’t bother me that much. Everyone that passed was super courteous and friendly, and you just pull over to the side and take in the view a little more!

The higher elevation aspens had already changed (which were STUNNING), but the trees down along the road and at the mill were not quite there yet - in a week it’ll be PERFECT.

The mill itself is pretty cool - there was a guy who lived in the super tiny town of Crystal that was at the mill to answer any questions. In the little town, there’s a small store and a few homes and cabins.

Overall, a great hike! Was home by 6pm, so if you’re coming from Denver and wanna kill a day, this one’s perfect.

It was a great hike but next time would take ATV. Hike was very hot but beautiful.

off road driving
24 days ago

ok we took this road on accident in our 04 jeep tj with 4inch lift 35 tires. views were great & road was good until we got to the bottom by waterfall. then it was rocky with really sharp rocks all over with no way to avoid them. a fun jeep trail & it woulda been alot beter if we had another vehicle with us because we saw no one else. dont do this trail alone because if u breakdown u are way out there! i wld do again but i wld camp at the top & go with another vehicle!

26 days ago

Really enjoyed this hike. Got to the trailhead at the mailboxes at 7 am and were at the mill by 9am. Had it mostly to ourselves! Not much traffic until after 10 am, so recommend getting there early if you don't want to encounter atv and 4 wheel traffic.

hiking
1 month ago

What a beautiful hike. We parked at the cluster of mailboxes. We had a nice conversation with a worker at the shop in Crystal and learned that the family owns much of the river on both sides between Marble and Crystal. Bring plenty of water and wear really sturdy footwear. We went on a weekday which was nice. I’d guess we were passed by 20 motorcycles, 10 cars and 15 ATV’s during our 7 hour leisurely hike. 1st mile is pretty steep.

hiking
1 month ago

Hike was good. Good footwear needed- kinda rocky. Beautiful scenery with majestic peaks. Make sure to bring sunscreen- in the heat of the day there isn’t much shade. Only downside is the occasional passing vehicles- not too much of a problem, but we had our two dogs and had to step off to the side any time a truck or ATV passed. A bit dusty too but worth it! They do charge to swim at the Crystal Mill but there are plenty of spots to stop off for a quick dip or refresher along the stream. The hike took us about 6 hours with stopping for lunch and pics at the Crystal mill, and letting our dogs take numerous river dips. Bring water shoes if you can and you’ll really enjoy going in on your own accord.

on Crystal Mill

hiking
1 month ago

Best money ever spent. Hire Smitty‘ Jeep tours to take you to Geneva Lake trail head and hike that amazing hike then hike down the three miles to Crystal Mill and get picked up. I did this on a Monday and there was not much atv or jeep traffic.

1 month ago

This is a nice 3 star hike. While the scenery is a 4 star, the regular ATV and 4WD traffic make it far from ideal.

On both sides of the road you will find private property signs. Additionally, the Mill is not much to see and unless you pay $10 are not welcomed to go to the waters below. The town at the end while small could be much more accomadating. They prefer you pay for a drink and leave just as quickly as you can.

Hiked yesterday once we found out our Nissan Rogue should probably not be on this road... lots of ATV's but we loved every minute of this hike! Gorgeous area and we came back with lots of beautiful pictures! We loved every minute of this hike, including nibbling on a few wild raspberries that we found! Everybody sharing the trail/road was wonderful! A definite must-do!

hiking
2 months ago

I’m sure this has been written in other reviews, but although the hike features seriously gorgeous views of lakes, rivers, mountains and of course the mill itself, it is moderately to heavily trafficked with off-roading motorists. That means stepping off to the side of the trail every few minutes to let someone pass, and if you have a dog, keeping a tight leash around bends and narrow sections of the trail. It also means that you should not be expecting a “hiking trail” so much as a rocky dirt road.

Traffic from motorists can be avoided by getting an early start (around sunrise) to make it there and back to the trailhead with few interruptions, or go on a week day if possible (I’ve hiked this trail on a few separate occasions and found this to be accurate).

The hike is definitely worth doing! It is very picturesque and there are several beautiful pit stops to take along the way. Just do yourself the courtesy of going at an off time!

hiking
2 months ago

My favorite hike to date! Challenging, spectacular views. Love the river along the trail. I did read people upset about the 4x4 vehicles, honestly didn’t bother us one bit! We parked down by the mail boxes and was between 9 and 10 miles round trip. Brought our dog too! Stop by groovy slow bbq after in marble for an amazing post hike meal!!! Soooo yummy!!

hiking
2 months ago

This hike was absolutely gorgeous work beautiful mountain scenery, Aspen forests, a winding river, and of course the beautiful Mill at the end. My only complaint was the trail is yard frequently by ATVs and 4 wheel drive vehicles so you frequently have to move to the side to allow them to pass. The trail itself is also all gravel and can get uncomfortable to hike on, but it was all worth it for the views

hiking
3 months ago

Almost didn't go on this hike due to food poisoning the night before, but it was so worth it!

I drove all the way up to the "Crystal Mill 4 miles" sign in my Chevy Cruze. I've been on worse roads, but if you treat your car like its your baby, you may want to park down by the mailboxes where others suggest.

My pup and I started the hike just before 7:30am on Sunday 6/10 and had the whole trail to ourselves pretty much the whole time up until the very end near the Mill. I even had the Mill to myself for quite a while since it was so early! It is absolutely stunning and I'm so glad I checked it out. Checked out the town of Crystal as well, but there wasn't anybody around.

On the way back (between 10-11am), I did come across many ATVs and jeeps, but they were all driving carefully and it was not an issue for me and my pup to hang off to the side of the road while they apssed. The hike is quite shady and cool if you go early in the morning, but on the way back, it was mostly out in the exposure - so definitely don't forget the sunscreen!

hiking
3 months ago

Yes, the Mill is the most photographed place in Colorado, and yes, it is a beautiful site... BUT, as a hike -- not so great, unless you enjoy hiking sun-baked jeep trails with clouds of dust from passing vehicles (as noted by other reviewers). We wondered why the parking lot was so tiny -- people are driving this trail, not hiking it! As Stephanie says, the town, which could be really cool, comes across as very unfriendly.
Just a nerdy note on the Mill. Not really a mill, but a power station, with only that solitary building left. The shaft was used only very early -- water was sluiced down it to a horizontal wheel (to a turbine) to generate air pressure for pneumatic mining drills. Later this was abandoned and the river was dammed for power generators for the mines. The town itself was only "bustling" for eight years before the silver market bottomed out.
Well worth seeing whether you hike or drive!

hiking
3 months ago

GO EARLY.
On the way back out I ran into so many motor vehicles and almost got hit by a dirt bike. Lots of dust kicked up.
The mill is gorgeous.
By the time I was leaving it was flooded with so many people.
The town of Crystal would be much prettier if there weren’t ugly bright “no trespassing” signs on the doors of the ghost town buildings, and camp gear strewn everywhere and unsightly camp chairs everywhere because of people in the cabins. Wish the lady would have bought it to preserve it, not to use it to make money.

hiking
3 months ago

I’ll start with the directions that others posted. Go through the town of Marble and past Beaver Lake staying on route 3. Some people say to park where you see the mailboxes on the right. We kept going up the hill in a Subaru Outback and the road was fine all the way up to the sign that said Crystal 4 miles. The parking there was full (about 4 cars) so we turned around and went back down the hill about 50 yards and parked off the side of the road. The trail is really just following the Jeep road to Crystal. At the small lake you hit within about half a mile stay right. About 3.8 miles in you’ll get to Crystal mill. Definitely go another 2/10 of a mile to Crystal. There is a general store there with snacks and drinks and some postcards. We met a lady there who just bought the whole town and surrounding areas including the mill with her boyfriend from his family. Cool story. They plan on making the cabins in Crystal available to rent. We were there on Saturday of Memorial Day weekend. A decent amount of vehicles traveling the road and about 20 people at Crystal mill.

hiking
3 months ago

one of the most beautiful hikes in the state. follows along the beautiful crystal river and the mill doesn't disappoint.

hiking
4 months ago

It’s was amazing. Period.

hiking
4 months 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.

off road driving
4 months ago

The Crystal River Jeep Tours is the way to go. They offer a 3-hour Crystal tour, 5–hour Lead King Basin tour to the Crystal Mill. They also offer drop-off and pick-up services to the major trailheads, Lost Trail, Silver Creek and Geneva Lake. Call for reservations 970-963-1991. www.smithfamilycolorado.com/crjt or find us on Facebook.

hiking
4 months ago

Lovely hike. Probably more scenic in summer or fall, but still completely stunning. We were the only hikers on the trail and only saw three vehicles. The hike is pretty easy, especially if you park at the top of the hill. We drove up in a RAV4 and had no trouble. As others have said, set your gps early, there is no phone service for miles.

hiking
5 months ago

Beautiful hike, a little difficult due to going after it snowed.

snowshoeing
6 months ago

Absolutely beautiful, even better in person. If you want to avoid crowds, snowshoe up on a February day and I’ll guarantee you solitude. We were definitely the first people back there in a long time, had to break trail. A long slog back but worth every moment.

on Crystal Mill

off road driving
8 months ago

One of the most annoyingly bumpy trails I’ve ever done, Even with GPS still had to ask locals how to access the trailhead. Not especially scenic until you get to the mill - mostly surrounded very close by trees. Most croweded trail I’ve ever done. Lots of foot traffic. Will not go again, Just had to see it once.

hiking
8 months ago

Boy, it was kind of tough to find the trailhead, but thanks to some prior reviews, I was able to ascertain its whereabouts without wasting too much extra time. The trail was covered in snow, although it was packed down significantly with snowmobile tracks. This was an incredibly peaceful hike along the river, with the only sounds being the water moving. I passed not a soul on the trail, and had the Crystal Mill to myself. Things look very nice covered in snow. After a few photographs, some beef jerky and some water, I made my way back to my truck.

hiking
10 months ago

Many times our experience is based on our expectations. I knew this was going to be a pretty hike. What I didn't know is that this isn't a hiking only trail, it's a road. It's not a bad thing, but just be aware it's a road designed for 4wheel drive/off road vehicles.

There are also no signs. Once you make it through Marble as the app gives directions (download the area of the map on Google maps or bring a GPS: we came through Carbondale and lost service and Data before we even hit Redstone), you could park at the bottom of the hill like another reviewer says (just before the 'No winter maintenance' sign ), or continue up the hill (most cars can make this part). At the top of the hill the road forks and this is where the only sign is. It's just not explicit. Left forks to lost mountain trail. Right says the town of Crystal 4 miles. To the right there is a place for 2 cars to park. If you keep going to the right, even though it appears you are going nowhere, there is more parking (upwards of 6 cars) to the far right. The road/trail then takes a sharp left down a hill.

Driving: any capable 4 wheel drive vehicle you are willing to take off road would be fine, as well as OHVs. We were passed by 3 ATVs and probably 5-8 cars/trucks.

Hiking: most of the trail is flatter, with the steepest hills at the beginning. Except you are going down them first, so save some energy for the end. Being a road there are some rocky areas, but mostly even. If it has been rainy or snowy, there are large parts of the road that turn into a giant pond.

We took our 10, 8, and 5 year old sons. The 10 and 8 year olds had no trouble with the hike. The five year old ended up being carried most of the way but in full disclosure, isn't out of the norm for him. :D We hiked this Oct. 21 and probably saw about 20 other hikers, plus the previously mentioned driver's.

Overall, a very good hike. Beautiful Crystal River, and some great photo opportunities. Just know it's a road and there are no signs to help guide you. Hopefully the above is helpful... every car we encountered was as confused as we were on exactly where to go.

hiking
11 months ago

We got there on Sunday 10/15/2017 9:30am, passed the mailboxes, our 4X4 SUV able to drove up to the trail head, 5MPH. There are about 6-8 parking spots up there. Hiking along crystal river, most the aspen leaves were gone but still very beautiful. Some ups and downs and rocky road. But not hard difficult at all. We were enjoying the views and stopped for pictures, took us 1 hr and 45 minutes to get there. Saw some 4X4s, ATV drove there.

Crystal Mill, that old house was build in 1892, still looked amazing! We hiked down by the river, had some lunch, waited for the better lighting for pictures. Walked around until 1pm.

Imaging with all the golden aspen around this place, it will be much more colorful!

Hopefully will be back here in September next year!

hiking
11 months ago

If you include up Dave's Hill which ads another 1.6 miles round trip, it make it a much more difficult hike. If have the right vehicle, avoid Dave's Hill. The rest of the hike is great. Today's trek was more difficult than normal as 24 hours ago we had 8 inches of fresh snow land. This made the trail slippery, muddy, water pooled, and cool. The destination was spectacular seeing the Mill. Overall we hiked 10.2 miles.

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