Palmer Lake

607 reviews

This trail no longer allows dogs. $800 penalties are posted for bringing a dog. Trailhead signs warn about recent mountain lion and rabid skunk sightings. We only saw squirrels and an eagle. The main trail to the two reservoirs is a dirt road with nice views of the water. The loop called La Deux-Ice Cave Creek includes the main reservoir trail but has no markings for the smaller trail turn-offs in order to complete the loop. It also has multiple intersections with other trails where we needed to orient to north and use AllTrails to make sure we stayed on the correct trail. The part of the trail that follows the creek is lovely but also has some steep drop-offs and a few places with tricky footing and washouts. A few short steep parts elsewhere were very rutted from washouts. Multiple creek crossings all had logs or rocks to balance on and keep feet dry. We measured the trail distance at 4.67 miles rather than 3.8. It's a nice hike, more shaded and less traveled when you get off the main reservoir route. I would rate it higher if it had better signage for the alternate routes and had less pipes and other ugly utility structures on its main road.