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

Great hike yesterday. 4AM start. Two goats at the top. No clouds or wind. I think they should resurrect that pile of rocks on the top to make it higher than Elbert again!

1. This is longer than 8.3. More like 9.5. Consider that for time. We started at 5.20 am and we were in the car at 1pm. We hike a pretty average pace, but most people we going significantly slower.

2. DON'T MISS THE TRAIL TURNOFF! If you're walking in the dirt road for more than 10 minutes, you may have missed it. It's easy to do in the dark, even with headlamps, and one guy we met missed it by 40 mins. It's about 5 mins down the trail on the left.

Maybe my new favorite 14er. Really gorgeous, especially for a 14er. Not as much traffic as a lot of popular peaks either. Highly recommend early start, if for no other reason so you can see the sun rise above the Mosquito Range to the East. Also recommend a camp at Elbert Creek Campground the night before. Top notch campsites and just around the corner. And folks, please: STOP starting 14er climbs too late in the morning. Lightning is a real threat with late starts so get on the trail early.

We hiked this se trail on our descent after hiking up the steeper sw trail.
This trail was a dream.

My family, husband, son (21) and daughter (19) decided to hike this steeper ascent trail as my knees are great going up but kill me on downhills. We parked at the southeast Massive trailhead and hiked the road the 2 miles to the sw trailhead.
This sw hike is no joke, very steep and while nothing hurt on me, it was just hard. You reach the saddle where the sw and se trails meet then you go up the last .3 to the summit. It's a fairly easy ridge but you're scrambling some. The views are amazing!
We descended down the 6+ mile se trail which still bothered my bad knee but the sw trail was not doable at all for me which is why we parked where we did and made it a loop. The mileage is about the same if you do it that way vs the out and back on the se trail.
I'd say if you have good knees and a very steep descent doesn't bother you then the sw trail shaves off about 5+ miles.

Loved it. First fourteener and I liked the long approach, seemed a steady incline. With beautiful alpine meadow views. Brought the dogs and they did great, water on the ct section. Only at the scramble portion at the very top did I feel the need to keep them out of people’s way for safety.

hiking
9 days ago

The road to the trailhead is very rough, you definitely need high clearance and 4WD to get all the way. There were no cars parked at the trail head. Cars could probably make it a bit past the Mt Massive trailhead, to within about 1 mile of the trailhead, where there are some campsites to park at. But depending on your vehicle, it may be safest to not try.

The hike itself offered beautiful views of many surrounding mountains and was generally easy to follow. It is very steep at times, and you definitely want to be fully acclimated before attempting. Before you reach the first lake, the trail forks, and could be easy to miss. To the right is a path up to a waterfall, and to the left is the lake(s). The AllTrails map doesn't include hiking up to the second lake, though there's definitely a faint trail going there and it's not a bad quick addition if you still have the energy at the top. We only saw one other set of hikers the whole time we were on the trail.

Excellent hike that takes you through pine forest, sub-alpine shrubs, and an amazing ascent up the massive granite field (which is full of marmots and pikas). Views are phenomenal, especially at the very top. Bring lots of water and food to stay energized.

13 days ago

Brutal climb, but worth it. Gorgeous views, flora and wildlife. Plan for 6-8 hours on Elbert. Start early for sunrise and missing potential weather. We slackpacked with granolas, 100 oz water, rain jacket and emergency bivy. Took 7 hours, and we stared at 5am. ENJOY!

Quite difficult, but worth it when you get to the top. Bring warm clothes!

hiking
14 days ago

Without an ATV or FWD better park at the Mt Massive trailhead. From there the hike along the dirt road to the trailhead is over one hour. Halfway up the trail, it gets extremely confusing where the trail supposedly goes. There are no clear signs. I spent over 2 hours hours up there circling around trying to find my way and never made it to any lakes(s), turning back in frustration as it was getting later and later and hiked the 3 hours plus back to the car.
Re. lady with her toddlers below, I am positive you must have been at another lake. The 'trail' gets pretty steep in areas climbing over boulders while you're holding onto tree limbs.

Road to the trailhead is rough. There’s a spot 1/3 mile from the trailhead my 4x4 Jeep couldn’t make it over. Must have good clearance and good driving skills to make it to this trail head

Very tame trail up until the end. Slightly rocky near the top(predictably). The trail split is very well marked and it’s easy to tell where to go without any kind of map. The view was great. I wouldn’t say it is as challenging/rewarding as Elbert but that’s why you hit both while you’re in Leadville

This trail would be a 5 in Illinois, for instance, but in Colorado, there are much better options. Beautiful aspen groves and a few scenic overlooks, but too many campers. No wildlife. The northern leg of the route is a 4WD track and you will have to move over for trucks etc. Highly recommend the short loop at the northwest end of the trail, where you can find the longest beaver dam any of us had ever seen. Would have rated this as moderately trafficked, and definitely on the easy side of moderate.

A couple of marathons, numerous obstacle races, and raising 4 teenage girls. But nothing could prepare me for this beast. Only had 2 days to acclimate from sea level, and this mountain kicked our butts. It throws everything at you so it’s not at all boring. But prepare your mind for a test.

Lakes, wildflowers, marmots and stunning views. Awesome hike!

A beautiful 14er, but not the greatest trail. The first couple of miles through the trees is great, but be prepared for very steep, eroded, gravel-y trail after the ridge/buttress. A few other notes: limited parking at the trailhead and no restroom. It looks like there are some places to park, however, further down the 4WD road a quarter mile past the trailhead. It's certainly a beautiful, worthwhile trail, just know that you'll earn it!

Beautiful trail, would absolutely recommend! Lots of wildflowers, cute marmots and different landscapes on the way. But, this took much longer than I anticipated, and I’m a speedy hiker. Started my ascent at 6:50 and summited at 11:10, with a couple generous breaks on the way up. Stayed up there for about an hour and then got back to the car at 3:20. Went on a Friday and if you can make it on a weekday it is so worth it. Only saw about 20 people total the whole day and didn’t see anyone on my descent—so peaceful. Also definitely go all the way and don’t just stop at the false summit!—it’s not that far off!

Also, if you are feeling ambitious, camp over the weekend and do Elbert and Massive on back-to-back days. There is a ton of camping space along the dirt road that connects the trailheads (as well as on the Colorado trail that starts out Mt. Massive it seems), would make for a great few days.

Awesome hike! Did last August. Trailhead was a little tricky to find, but there is a sign for it. You spend a good 2-3 miles on the ridge, and being on top of the range, so don’t assume your on Elbert’s peak. You will know when you made it!

Great! Steep but after every corner new views! We made it until 12,000 feet in 3 hours. We needed 2 hours to go down. We love the variety in the landscape!

Wow! My 1st 14er! Diverse trail, rock stairway to the heavens, mountain goats and an incredible 360 degree view!

This is one of the prettiest bikes that I have done in Colorado. It is a long drive back in and it a 1 lane road when you get back closer to trailhead. I would recommend a 4wd once you past the first trailhead parking for Mt. Massive. Our GPS reading showed that it was 6 miles not 5.4. Well worth the drive.

Had the best time hiking this today! This was my tenth fourteener and probably has been my favorite so far. Not super hard and the trail was very well defined and easy to follow. Views were some of the prettiest I have seen! It also isn’t as popular as Elbert which I did last summer so it was nice not having the trail be super crowded. Saw some mountain goats as well. 10/10 recommend!

Great camping along the road to the trailhead, both free dispersed and pay sites w bathrooms. You must have good clearance probably 4WD to get to the trailhead undamaged. A few Subarus were up there but I guarantee they bottomed out on a few spots. There is a gnarly drainage/culvert about 1/4 of a mile before the trailhead. Some butt was parked right before it when i was leaving and only left a crappy line down in my 3in lifted FJ that I still bottomed out.
Hike is awesome, pretty easy for a fourteener. Lots of rocks, hard on the feet, ankles and knees coming down. 2 or 3 false summits, be prepared. I went through 5L of water, applied sunscreen twice and definitely bring bug spray for the first part.
Lots of really cool views both of the Elk Range and of Leadville and the surrounding lakes and scenery. Spectacular views of the Halfmoon lakes and valley on your way up.

Was awesome!! Done 11 and this was my favorite.

Great fun

camping
1 month ago

Spectacular place!! If you go up far enough, the views are amazing. Also found a small creek waterfall with a pool at the bottom for swimming. Water was chilly. Not necessarily a 4WD, SUV’s can handle it unless you guy up high. Definitely recommend going up Peek A Boo Gulch and taking a sunset drive.

We packed our kayaks and went to Twin Lakes one day. About 30 min drive from camp to lakes. Had a cocktail in town and headed back to camp.


Went Friday-Sunday (July 13-15) and it was busy. All campsites were full... maybe 1 or 2 ones open. That was the only downside. The sites are very spread out so it’s still very private.

This is a great trail for a hard but not too technical climb of a 14er..long enough to make it difficult and some fun but not crazy scrambling and route finding to get up to the summit ridge. The parking can be a challenge due to the Mt Elbert trailhead close by so arrive before 6am to give yourself enough time. Also lots of varied terrain from the CO trail at start to the high meadow with wild flowers. Superb views from the top. There was a fair amount of traffic on the trail this Saturday but not at all overcrowded.

Great views and a lovely hike! From the parking lot it’s about 14.8 miles, and it took us about 7 hours. Definitely start early!

Make sure you have a good level of fitness for this one.

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