hiking
no shade
1 day ago

Great little spot in the village of Columbus to escape to the desert. Birds, cacti, other wildlife and wild flowers are found along the trail. State Park staff have expanded the trail system to include more areas for access. Also, a trail has been built lower along the base of the hill for easier accessibility. $5 day use fee is required for access, which includes access to a museum and restrooms/showers on site.

If you complete this loop you will remember it for the rest of your life! Challenging, beautiful, diverse and rewarding. Hiked on May 27 with wife, 10 yo, 8 yo and carried 1 yo on our backs. Not for the faint hearted because of the distance, snow and terrain. Took about 13 hours. But we loved it! Recommend ascending on the Bull of the Woods trail and descending on Williams Lake. I think the views are more stunning from this perspective. Also, this will allow getting the tougher snow climbs out of the way when it is cooler in the morning. On the way down you can sled down a good ways or hike off trail on some steep grades to avoid the snow. As for snow, highly recommend snowshoes and micro spikes. Possible without this time of year but would be tricky. A few steep climbs in softening snow. My wife and son used snowshoes at these spots and appreciated them. I did without but it was tricky. A word of caution...use the All Trails recorded route for this one. I used a NGS map on Gaia and the trail took us back into the valley after Fraser Mountain (around mile 5 or 6) back below tree line. This would probably be fine in late summer, but we had huge issues trying to get back out of the valley with soft waste deep snow. Very steep climb and postholed nearly every step. The AllTrails track seems to be correct in going off trail but staying above the tree line. Overall, excellent hike and very memorable experience. One of my favorite high point ascents so far.

on Lucas Canyon Trail

backpacking
rocky
1 day ago

Very scenic trail with ample shade along the way. We saw two Elk just off of the trail on our way up. Like the other reviewers have said this trail is extremely rocky, I think the ATVs are chewing it up more and more. We did a short overnight backing trip. We walked to the end of the trail where there was a lot of ATV traffic and decided to head back down the trail to find a camp spot. Also like the other reviewers mentioned, it's a heavily used two track ATV trail the whole way. Pros: Very scenic, Shady Areas, and a mild elevation gain. Cons: Busy (ATVs), rocky, and no water (except at beginning).

Lots of mud below tree line as of 5/27. There is still snow for glissading up top safely. Watch for afternoon storms. *Note* if you lost a single MSR Alpine type snowshoe this winter - I climbed up some talus rock to grab it. Brought it to the bridge to start the hike 5/27. I’m not a local so couldn’t hold onto it.

hiking
2 days ago

After 0.8 miles, get to a sign for trail 261 that takes off to the right that says trail closed. I have no idea why. Other than a few easy trees across the trail, it is in fine shape and someone has been doing some maintenance. Only about the last 1/4 to 1/2 mile of trail still has snow.

Inaccessible to public

hiking
3 days ago

Hiked the trail clockwise. Trail was well marked and easy to follow. Plan a minimum of 3 days 2 nights to enjoy the hike. We found the total distance to be closer to 24 miles. Going clockwise there is only water for the first couple miles along the west fork then it is dry until you descend back down into the middle fork at about 10 miles. There is a nice camping area near the top at around 8-9 miles in but it was dry. However we saw some creek beds that we were told had water a couple weeks earlier. If there was water or if we had enough, we might have preferred camping near the lookout at the top just before the switchbacks down. The view is insane. There are sites at the bottom. A couple were really nice but occupied. The area we set up was basically a lot of tall grass and horse poop. Not too bad. Actually the ground is a bit softer here so that was nice. Hike from here to the hot springs was about 7 miles. Good sites nearby. We kinda wished we had time to stay another night here. Last leg another 7 miles. About 60 river crossings total. Water was rarely above the knees but remember it had been very dry in the weeks prior so levels were down. Hiking poles are necessary especially if water is any higher. The rocks are slippery and the poles help you a lot. We wore merrell water hiking sandals first couple miles then dry shoes for the long climb. Water hiking sandals the second and third day and changed to dry shoes at little bear canyon. I recommend wearing socks with your sandals. amazing hike but it is challenging. We were glad we went clockwise and got the really long and hard part out of the way to enjoy the other two days at a slower pace.

I really loved this hike! First time really exploring in the area. Highly recommend. Easyish backpacking for beginners, which we had a few in the group I was in. The first 4 miles of the trail is the hardest, since there’s not a ton of shade or any water. Our pups got a bit hot the first leg, so I would make sure you pack some water for them or go earlier in the hotter months. There were so many river crossings the last 3 miles to the Hotsprings! Which I absolutely enjoyed, BUT I wished I had brought my chaco sandals! Definitely bring extra shoes since you’ll for sure get your hiking boots soaking wet. Overall, gorgeous scenery. Very lush. This was a great getaway from the heat and felt lovely to be by the water.

hiking
blowdown
icy
4 days ago

We hiked up from Stewart Lake. Last bit is lots of snow. I postholed through and smashed my knee on a boulder. Luckily a nurse was nearby and gave me some help! I did the hike in shorts just fine and did bring a down jacket to wear. The effort was totally worth it and would do it again in a heartbeat. The lake is still partially (mostly) frozen over. At the last ascension stay in the tree line for a clear path --- avoid climbing up through the snow.

Beautiful trail that is well marked and perfect for hikers of all skill levels! Look for the blue diamonds, parking is free when you follow the description. Loved it all!!!

Wife, dog, and I hiked this today. Started out at 745am, still lots of snow but weather was 35 so it was firm. Hardly any postholing, it’s all hard pack at this point. Some sketchy areas above the tree line with snow, especially once the sun is out past noon. The hike back was a slush fest below the tree line. Beautiful views at wheeler made it worth it.

Beautiful hike through the woods lots of wild flowers along the way. Reaching the top with gorgeous snow capped peak, baby aspen trees and the almost dried up pond.

Beautiful trail from start to finish. Fairly easy hike. Great views!

hiking
5 days ago

The trail was great. It is shared with ATVs, bikers and hikers. We encounter more ATVs than we would have liked, but then again it was Memorial Day. The trail was a nice dirt road, rocky in parts but not bad. Beautiful meadow views on the side of the trail as well.

The first part of the trail offers no shade- about an hour/hour and a half. The next hour you head downhill towards the canyon. In the canyon it’s very shaded and very interesting! But keep going because beyond that is a beautiful stream & canyon. We made this our stop because of a friends I injury. We were told that after you crossed the water, it was about about hour after to the hot spring. It’s a great hike. Long and not too uphill/downhill. Well marked too.

hiking
rocky
5 days ago

Did an out and back day hike. Got about five miles in and then turned around. Can confirm other reviews, it's warm I hiked in pants and flannel and greatly regretted it. Drank 2 L water on trail, still not enough. I started at noon, got back by 6. I'm a moderate hiker at best, this kicked my butt and I loved every min of it! Fixed a couple turns on the path on the way up, saw not another soul! The trail head is at the end of a long road that winds through ranch property, stay on 916 for awhile and you'll be fine!

hiking
icy
muddy
snow
5 days ago

The trail is still covered with snow once you get over the saddle and try to take the switch backs down to the lake. There is snow covering the entire first half of the switch backs. It’s passable but a bit of a suffer fest (total suffer fest lol). To avoid that, there’s a bit of a sketchy steep scramble down the cornice to the left when looking down at the switch backs. We didn’t see it one the way down but took that on the way back up. If you can get past that, there’s still snow that you fall through occasionally (shorts not recommended) but it’s possible to get to the lake. It’s frozen over rn and super beautiful.

hiking
snow
5 days ago

Beautiful stream side canyon hike. Lots of water crossings, but nothing remotely challenging. As of MDW 2020, there's still snow after about 2.5 miles, though mostly manageable as it is well packed or easily deviated around, that is until 3.5 mi, where it is full snow coverage. It gets dicey around where the final switchbacks begin as the slope is too steep and the trail route is easily lost. Still made it to the top of the canyon and once on the ridge attempted Lobo Peak, but the snow was packed hard and nothing but elk prints to follow so the attempt was aborted. Without proper sticks and waterproof or cold weather gear, I'd advise to hold off on going beyond the final meadow for at least another week or two.

hiking
no shade
rocky
scramble
6 days ago

Pretty steep incline. Very hot. Bring lots of water!

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