I'm a minimalist traveler and ultralight backpacker. The road isn’t marked but it’s a quick right into the trees shortly after the bridge. After those 3 miles its smooth sailing for just over a mile along relatively flat terrain and along the stream (Mill Creek) the louder the stream becomes the closer you are to the lake. The trail is primarily used for hiking, camping, and backpacking and is best used from May until October. Once you reach the top, you’ll be rewarded with views of the valley below and glimpses of more drastic peaks in the distance. Gather your gear, lace up your boots, strap on your pack, and get moving. Beautiful Hike and worth the incline to get to the top! When day hiking or backpacking in the San Juan National Forest, be sure to stay current on the rules and regulations. Click here to view the complete essential day hiking gear checklist. Weather at this elevation is unpredictable and volatile as well, and can take a turn for the worse at a moment’s notice. Hiked this one yesterday. Day Hiking Essentials 8. I would recommend parking near the bridge that crosses the little stream when you get off the highway and then walk the half mile up the dirt road. The road ouldn't be a problem with a 4x4, but there is VERY limited parking at the TH (maybe could fit 2 very small vehicles or one truck). The TH has a post marked "509," which can easily be overlooked if you're not looking for it. Most of the hike takes place above 10,000 feet, so be sure that you’re adequately acclimatized to the high altitude before hitting the trail. At about 1.5 miles, the trail begins climbing up and out of the Ruby Creek drainage. Buchanan Pass Loop via Pawnee Pass Trail, USFS trail 907. Columbine Lake is a family-friendly destination that sees heavy traffic throughout the summer. The Columbine Lake Trail highlights everything wonderful about Southwest Colorado. status date description; Dec 2, 2019 @ 12:13pm. The first mile and a quarter of the trail, highlighted by heavy tree-cover and countless switchbacks, is more or less uneventful. It was gorgeous and worth it!! 1. Like others have mentioned, although this trail is grueling, the grind to the top IS worth it. Columbine Lake Trail: Hiking Near Silverton, Colorado. The lake is stunning. Nearby Hiking Trails. Intense inclines gave way to sprawling valleys full of wildflowers, which climbed slowly to the pristine Lake Columbine. The first 2 miles are through the trees with very difficult switchbacks but the harder part is once you hit the tree line, it is pretty much straight up. Stick around, I’ll tell you how to prepare, what to expect, and all the other information you need to get your journey off on the right foot. You can pack a water filter to purify water as you go, which will save you considerable weight. Dec 2, 2019. I’d say any 2WD truck would make it. One of the more difficult hikes I’ve done due to the steepness of the trail, especially out of the trees through the basin to the saddle. Don't be lazy and just walk the extra half mile ;) Starting from the stream its a half mile up the dirt road to the where the switch backs begin. To continue keeping this trail in shape for other hikers, pack out everything you pack in and do your very best to leave no trace. Parking might be a problem if you arrive late(after 8:30 am) Columbine Lake Trail, Fraser: See 10 reviews, articles, and 19 photos of Columbine Lake Trail, ranked No.8 on Tripadvisor among 12 attractions in Fraser. The whole area was super dry and at times I felt like I was dangerously in a tinder box. Budget Backpacking Gear: Cheap 10 lb Ultralight Kit [Sub-$500], Road Trip Essentials: Interactive Packing List + 55 Must-Haves, My 8.8 lb Ultralight Backpacking Gear List, What to Bring on a Day Hike: 10 Essentials + Checklist, Budget Backpacking Gear: Affordable 10 lb Ultralight Kit, Backpacking Food: Meal Plan Tips & Ideas for Your Next Hike, Get Paid to Hike: 10 Jobs to Make Money on the Trail, Best Gifts for Hikers: Unique Hiking Gifts for Any Budget, Huemul Circuit Guide (Map, Route, Gear, Camping & Weather), Osprey Exos 48 Review: A Formidable Ultralight Backpack, Backpacking the Atacama: The Eerie Ghost Town of San Bartolo, Pets are allowed but must be leashed at all times, Campfires are prohibited within 100 feet of lakes, streams, or trails, Camping is prohibited within 100 feet of lakes, streams, and developed trails, Camping is allowed for up to 14 continuous days and 28 days total in a 60 day period, Target shooting away from the trail is legal, but only with a proper firearm license. Columbine Lakes Trail forked and the route to the lake headed right (southeast) while the route to Arapaho Pass headed to the left (northeast). To get there, take US 40 north from I-70 then take County Road 84 to USFS Road 129. This Columbine Lake Trail (#11.1) begins at the Junco Lake Trailhead northwest of Denver. The lake is beautiful and on par with Ice Lake's coloring. Wildflower junkies should also hike the nearby Ice Lakes Basin Trail, as there seem to be more wildflowers (and, Before you know it, you’ll arrive at the tranquil Columbine Lake. The lake water is a shimmering royal blue, which reflects the majestic mountains in the background as the wind blows faint ripples across its surface. Your knees will thank you! Jaw dropping. All of the huffing and puffing uphill will eventually bring you above tree line, where the hikes gets exponentially better, so keep that in mind. Hiking the Columbine Lake Trail A. Instead, use AllTrails Pro if you need an accurate offline map for your trip. There are a couple really wide pullouts and you’ll only have to hike a tenth of a mile to the trail. This hike climbs in elevation at a rather steep 12% grade, which rates it as a ‘difficult’ hike. Sorry, there are no tours or activities available to book online for the date(s) you selected. Another option is to stay to the runner's left of the trail that leads to the lake - there's an obvious alternative across a talus slope above the outflow stream. Far from major interstates and metropolitan areas, the trails snake through more than 1 million acres of Routt National Forest land, making it easy to find your own private paradise. Columbine Lake lies less than 6 miles from the end of the road, but in terms of a rugged location with a remote alpine feel, it couldn't be further away. Parking can be difficult and a higher clearance vehicle is preferred to park by the trail head. Snow Covered: Nov 18, 2019 @ 5:06pm. This paved trail serves as an important resource for local residents, as it connects to several other trails in the expansive regional trail system and provides a safe and convenient means of getting around by foot or bike. Although it is not the longest, the elevation makes it extremely tough. El sendero ofrece una serie de opciones de actividades y es accesible todo el año. The first 3 miles or so are a grind and very steep. DIFFICULT 25.7 mi. See my adventures on insta @cdesmondtravel. An Immediate and Relentless Incline B. Lake Dorothy via Arapaho Pass Trail. The last mile or so is flat and beautiful with range views and a nice stream where you can fill a filtering water bottle for fresh mountain water. Pretty epic route as I looped back down to the trailhead for a 15 mile loop. Like. Watch out for the beginning of trail from the unpaved road on the left, it is easy to miss because it is atleast 1.5 feet higher than the unpaved road. The Columbine Lake Trail is about eight miles round trip and between 2,500 and 3,000 feet of elevation, depending on where you start the hike. Columbine Lake fills a wide, shallow basin west of the Divide under Mount Neva (12,814'); level meadows and gentle hills ring the lake and give it a particularly open, spacious feel An unofficial but well-defined trail leads .5 miles and 425' above Columbine Lake to an unnamed pass with stunning views south down the Cabin Creek drainage Take your time. Dec 2, 2019. Visit their rules and regulations webpage, or just read my summary below. Much of the last segment of the drive is over dirt roads that may have some washboarding and potholes, so drive carefully. The trail starts with a forest inclining into a meadow, then you walk up the meadow into a valley and follow the creek and you will find the lake. But prepare well for it and take poles if you have issues walking up hill. The surrounding peaks are quite beautiful, and looking east across US550, the San Juans are pretty stunning. Hotels near Columbine Lake Trail, Fraser on Tripadvisor: Find 4,306 traveler reviews, 1,170 candid photos, and prices for 511 hotels near Columbine Lake Trail in Fraser, CO. I decided to make a day of it and went up the pass and over to Oscar's peak, then dropped down to the Ophir Pass Road and up to Ophir Pass. Check in with the Forest Service before snowshoeing. To give you an idea of the challenge, I hiked Handies Peak two days AFTER this, and felt Handies was MUCH easier than this trail. Typically, I use the free Maps.me smartphone app for offline navigation on my hikes, but as of writing this post, the Columbine Lake Trail isn’t available on their maps yet. There is a 3 to 4 hours hike up the Columbine Trail to get to the lake. Probably my favorite of blue lakes, ice lake and this one. Final Thoughts 7. There is a 3 to 4 hours hike up the Columbine Trail to get to the lake. Campfires are prohibited at Columbine Lake. Columbine Lake is a 2,174 m blue singletrack alpine trail located near Fraser Colorado. Ski or snowshoe from your cabin door. Make sure you have enough water for you and your dog if they are joining! Mother Nature had taken it easy on me this time, and I enjoyed some of San Juan National Forest’s most idyllic backcountry as a result. Scenery-wise, the stretch from the saddle to the lake was my favorite portion of the hike. Columbine Lake, near Silverton, Colorado - Little known hike climbs steeply through forest and beautiful alpine meadows to a stunning glacial lake set amid a backdrop of rugged 13,000-ft.+ peaks. The remaining 1.4 miles is straight with some ups and downs and crossing a creek. The first few miles is an uphill slog. Even more beautiful than picture. Colorado Tourism Office, 1625 Broadway, Suite 1700 , Denver, CO, 80202, Phone: 800-COLORADO. I am an intermediate hiker and struggled to the top, although once you get there, it is worth it. I created the trail map at the beginning of this article by tracking my location with my Garmin Instinct and uploading the data to Google Maps. It gets better! Dogs are also able to use this trail. Also, wearing sunglasses is better as it has snowed feels too bright on eyes. Columbine Lake lies less than 6 miles from the end of the road, but in terms of a rugged location with a remote alpine feel, it couldn't be further away. Stunning views will open up instantly, and the true beauty of this trail will begin to take hold. Trailhead is hard to find and the road to get there somewhat rough, but doable. If you choose to hike in the off-season, prepare for cold temperatures and the possibility of snow. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash. The trail is very clear. Snow in upper sections and icy in the lower woods. If you park down on the main road you will add about 2 miles round trip. I’m a pretty experienced hiker and this was tough. The trail follows a river to get to the lake, and once arriving at the lake, there is a crystal-clear lake surrounded with scenic, jagged mountains. The intense inclines, sprawling alpine valleys, colorful Colorado wildflowers, and pristine Columbine Lake make this trail a must-hike. Traffic from the Million Dollar Highway will buzz in the background, and the views will be non-existent. Fraser Tourism; Fraser Hotels; Bed and Breakfast Fraser; Fraser Holiday Rentals; Fraser Holiday Packages; Flights to Fraser; Fraser Restaurants; Fraser Attractions It turns right and crosses the meadow to join the creek, where it steepens on a shifty path through a high alpine forest to Columbine Lake (3.4 miles : 11,060'). Before you know it, you’ll arrive at the tranquil Columbine Lake. Day hiking the Columbine Lake Trail should take at least four hours, so pack plenty of snacks and bring at least two liters of water. It is a good 6.8 mile day hike. It is beautiful and worth the 8+ miles. So worth it! 6: N40 01.782 W105 42.530 — 1.95 miles : Columbine Lake - Caribou Pass Trail split 7: N40 01.549 W105 42.274 — 2.4 miles : Skirt meadow 8: N40 01.420 W105 42.091 — 2.7 miles : Cross meadow Trail Description Trail Photos Print this Trail Trip Reports. Columbine Lake Trail is located within the Indian Peaks Wilderness, therefore wilderness regulations apply. Enjoy the journey. With more than 117 Columbine trails covering 720 miles, you’re bound to find a perfect trail like the Discovery Trail (CO) or Switzerland Trail. This trail is generally above the treeline, so the views are much better than the trail up from Route 550. then you will need to park little further from trailhead. The Columbine Lake Trail is about eight miles round trip and between 2,500 and 3,000 feet of elevation, depending on where you start the hike. Start your hike in the morning and plan on reaching Columbine Lake by noon to avoid afternoon rain and erratic alpine thunderstorms. The trailhead is located on a 4WD dirt road just off the Million Dollar Highway. It was a challenge, at least for me, but the views are unbelievable! This is a a fun trail to ride from mid-summer to fall with great alpine views at the top. Stay on designated trails and avoid trampling vegetation around the lake. Great Trail for Out-Of-State Visitors To See High Altitude Scenery. Restaurants in de buurt van Columbine Lake Trail op Tripadvisor. Not wanting to pass up the challenge of getting to the top , Shelly convinced me that even though her feet were blistered, she wanted to head up towards the pass. Nov 18, 2019. The hike to the lake is a slight climb in elevation, but nothing compared to what you just went through. The secluded ATV trails of the Columbine area are perfect for the off-roader seeking an escape from the crowds. Columbine Lake is a family-friendly destination that sees heavy traffic throughout the summer. Though I only spent 24 hours hiking and backpacking along the Columbine Lake Trail, my adventure into the breathtaking San Juan National Forest was unforgettable. Rules & Regulations A. A well-formed trail that doesn't appear on most maps continues .5 miles and 425' above the lake to a pass between the Meadow Creek drainage (north) and Cabin Creek drainage (south). Much of the last segment of the drive is over dirt roads that may have some washboarding and potholes, so drive carefully. Get Here. The trail eventually crosses over a ridgeline and connects with Columbine Lake Trail #509 for the remainder of the way up to the lake. This part of the trail may require some routefinding, but the way is generally marked by cairns. There are ample water sources beginning a couple of miles into the hike. Have you ever hiked the Columbine Lake Trail? The hiking trail thins out and wraps around the lake in both directions, and I highly recommend following it. But the hiker traffic on the trail will be far less crowded than the nearby Ice Lakes Basin Trail, and pretty soon, the views will be open up to spectacular panoramic landscapes. Traffic from the Million Dollar Highway will buzz in the background, and the views will be non-existent. A Sweeping Meadow Arrives C. Colorado’s Beautiful Wildflowers D. Hiking the Saddle E. Columbine Lake 4. My heart pumped through my shirt as I marched through valleys of wildflowers, ascended alpine saddles, and settled in along the pristine shores of Columbine Lake. Jeeping 4WD & ATV Trails Map for Columbine/Steamboat Springs, Colorado. Columbine Lake Trail. Columbine’s remote feel is due in part to the lake lying on the east side of 11,630-foot Sawtooth Pass, one of a handful of ridgetop keyholes leading into Sequoia National Park’s expansive backcountry. After you get through the switchbacks in the forest you’re rewarded with open mountain and beautiful views, but beware its even steeper from here. This trail tops out at 12,700 so don't bother riding it until mid-late July if you want to get to the lake. GPS Coordinates :: Download Coordinates. It is under 3 miles each way (checked by my GPS), it just feels longer for those unaccustomed to the altitude. First 2 miles are tough but once you get up to the saddle it's much easier. Beautiful day at the top. It can be accessed by foot and horse. These three months are your sweet spot – high-elevation snowbanks will mostly have melted off, and fall snowstorms shouldn’t be a threat. Looking down at the sweeping alpine valley. The rest of the trail, over the pass to the lake, is flat and easy. Hikers will immediately start the trail with a series of switchbacks that open up and end at the tree line. Hikers can park along the road and walk to the trailhead. The peak season for Colorado wildflowers is mid-July to mid-August. Took the pup with us too and he had a great time. The Columbine Lake trail is located in the San Juan National Forest between Ouray, Colorado and Silverton. Keep a close eye on the weather above you, as you’ll be completely exposed to the elements as you near 13,000 feet in elevation. Fires are not permitted at Columbine Lake. Highly recommend the lake and exploring the adjacent basin. Trailhead is not marked with a name but just a post marker so have your map. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Snow in upper sections and icy in the lower woods. Columbine Lake - 6.8 Miles Indian Peaks Wilderness Area. Both trails lead to the lake. Not wanting to pass up the challenge of getting to the top , Shelly convinced me that even though her feet were blistered, she wanted to head up towards the pass. Hiking Description - Columbine Lake, near Silverton, Colorado - Little known hike climbs steeply through forest and beautiful alpine meadows to a stunning glacial lake set amid a backdrop of rugged 13,000-ft.+ peaks. status date description; Dec 2, 2019 @ 12:13pm. Campfires are prohibited at Columbine Lake. The first mile and a quarter of the trail, highlighted by heavy tree-cover and countless switchbacks, is more or less uneventful. Whether you prefer to hike, snowshoe, or Nordic ski, exploring Telluride’s trails is the perfect way to enjoy a day off the slopes. (Though it’s a 4-wheel-drive road, I navigated to the trailhead safely in a 2-wheel-drive car.). The higher up the saddle you hike, the more stunning the backcountry gets. The trail begins off of Forest Road #820 a short distance from Highway 550, on the south side of Red Mountain Pass. It is tough, but keep climbing because once you get to the saddle it becomes significantly more enjoyable and the views are fantastic the entire time. Steamboat Lake State Park has groomed non-motorized Nordic trails. Indian Paintbrush, Fireweed, Columbines, and countless other species will pepper the landscape as you work your way through the backcountry. Then the lake is the real show stopper! Missed our turn after we turned off the highway. Path traverses two high basins and goes over a pass. From here, you can continue up the arduous scree covered slopes to Columbine Pass for a new perspective on Lewis Lake and Mine. The Trail starts after a long, well maintained dirt road (every car can make this) that gets you to a trailhead above 10,000 ft. The trail is 7.6 miles in total if you start from the trailhead which falls on the left of the dirt road. Keep going! The TH goes right into steep switchbacks. We found a pullout very close to the trailhead today. Views of the saddle, the last significant incline of the hike. Mechanized/motorized travel is prohibited. - See 11 traveler reviews, 23 candid photos, and great deals for Fraser, CO, at Tripadvisor. Hikers can park along the road and walk to the trailhead. The first two miles to the saddle are killer. Columbine Lake, Trail Map, Junco Lake Trailhead, Indian Peaks Wilderness Area, Colorado. The views are breathtaking on this 1.2 mile route. DIFFICULT 3.5 mi. I’ve attached a picture of where we parked (purple x). If you’ve got a 4WD vehicle and can be there early its worth it. I set my tent up on its shores and reveled in the undeniable glory of its royal blue waters. Explore the best trails in Columbine, Colorado on TrailLink. Los perros también pueden usar este sendero. Your email address will not be published. The lake water is a shimmering royal blue, which reflects the majestic mountains in the background as the wind blows faint ripples across its surface. The Columbine Trail runs across the eastern edge of the suburban community of Columbine, paralleling the busy S Platte Canyon Road. Stay on designated trails and avoid trampling vegetation around the lake. Trails When the snow starts to fly, Telluride transforms into a winter wonderland. My jaunt down one of Silverton’s best hiking trails reinforced what I already knew: life is better in the backcountry. Exercise extreme caution and get in touch with the San Juan Forest Service before you go. Trail is done for the year for bikes. Did Oct 16th. Camping is available but the alpine meadow is fragile, so tread lightly and move your tent often. Columbine Lake is a 2,174 m blue singletrack alpine trail located near Fraser Colorado. I would recommend parking close to the bridge and hiking up to the trailhead because the road to get there is not made for vehicles that are not 4x4 capable. Life after the saddle gets a bit easier, as the last one and a half miles to Columbine Lake are relatively flat. I trek into the wilderness, geek out about gear, and travel with the least amount of baggage as I can. Celebrated, high-elevation trail to astounding lake with off-trail options to Peak 13,300' and Pass 13,058'. Trail Description Trail Photos Print this Trail Trip Reports. Would I do it again? Check out my. I preferred it to the far more popular Ice Lakes Basin Trail, mostly because I encountered far fewer people while hiking to Columbine Lake. Tiene un lago y es calificado como difícil. Hey, I'm Noel. The closer you get to the lake, the more unforgiving and unearthly the terrain becomes. Seasonal Popularity. Once the forest cover abates, you’ll break out above treeline, and an idyllic alpine valley will appear. If Columbine’s one-mile loop is too tame for you, there are miles of groomed multi use trails easily accessible from Columbine. The scenery here is as good as it gets. When you start hearing the running water, you only have about 10 more minutes to the lake. Didn't see anyone else until hitting the tree line on the way down around 10:30am, after that I saw 20+ people heading up so I'd say the earlier you go the better. To prepare for your hike, use my day hiking essentials checklist as you pack your bag. Throughout my hike to Columbine Lake, I didn’t see any litter along the trail. Let me know by leaving a comment below! The trailhead is marked with a single post reading ‘Trail 509.’ It’s easy to miss, so I included a picture below. So warm. Mechanized/motorized travel is prohibited. However, what I would consider the toughest part of the trail is the mile or so that is in between the tree line and the saddle. The trail eventually crosses over a ridgeline and connects with Columbine Lake Trail #509 for the remainder of the way up to the lake. Once you’re on it, the first 3 or so miles are all uphill. But keep going; once you get to the saddle, and cross over the pass, the trail is VERY enjoyable and you'll have a major sense of accomplishment- not to mention amazing views from every angle. Nov 18, 2019. Wildflower junkies should also hike the nearby Ice Lakes Basin Trail, as there seem to be more wildflowers (and far more Columbines) than on the Columbine Lake Trail. 3. From there the trail climbs steeply up a series of switchbacks through a coniferous forest for more than a mile. Some of Colorado’s best hiking is waiting, and it’s up to you to go capture it. The road is pretty smooth. Trail on Meadow Creek and Columbine Lake in Arapaho National Forest, Indian Peaks Wilderness. Wow! Getting to the Trailhead 3. The San Juan Mountains are jagged, sheer, and more captivating than the Rocky Mountains for which Colorado is known. Because the area was so dry, the trail was a little slippery and loose on the descent; but I didn't have poles, took my time to enjoy the area, and did just fine. Mount Neva Loop via Arapaho Pass Trail. To get to the TH, turn on the Ophir Pass Road, cross the creek and park, or to get closer take a right on FS Rd 820, or ride the Rainbow Trail from Silverton. The journey up the saddle is steep, and there is some loose scree to contend with, but the trail should be safe if you’re paying attention to your surroundings. Fraser Tourism; Fraser Hotels; Bed and Breakfast Fraser; Fraser Holiday Rentals; Flights to Fraser; Fraser Restaurants; Fraser Attractions; Fraser Travel Forum Colorado has a look but don’t touch policy in regards to wildflowers, and this should be taken seriously. The Columbine Lake Trail is located 10.7 miles from Nederland, Colorado (CO) in Arapaho and Roosevelt National Forest. The trail is well maintained and heavily traveled, though snow may linger into July and conceal quick, counter-intuitive turns on the Columbine Lake Trail segment. 1. But it was worth it! Columbine Lake Trail, Fraser: See 10 reviews, articles, and 19 photos of Columbine Lake Trail, ranked No.8 on Tripadvisor among 12 attractions in Fraser. Luckily the wind was blowing out of the northwest so we had clear blue skies and no smoke. Columbine Lake is 45 minutes past Ouray, Colorado. I did this trail solo, but with my dog, around October 20th, right after the fire at South Mineral broke out. Perspective on Lewis Lake and this one trail continues on a gradual uphill to. Forest land for a new perspective on Lewis Lake and Mine varying terrain con tráfico moderado localizado cerca de,... Drive up to the trailhead if you don ’ t marked but it is under 3 miles way. 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And then you are an experienced backpacker with the least amount of baggage as i looped back down to Lake... M blue singletrack alpine trail located near Fraser Colorado mile 18 depth of 8 feet containing rainbow cutthroat! Views at the top you go rules, and an idyllic alpine valley will appear of Forest Road 820. On leaving no trace and easy, the first couple miles and then you will be.! Two miles to trailhead trails maps for columbine lake trails trail first 3 or so are a couple really wide and!