To be honest though, I’m constantly on the go, always moving, and got very restless spending all day in one place. Dogs are also able to use this trail. ✨New Blog Post: Hike Iron Mountain via Heaton Fl, I’ve learned that two people can look at the exa, The best views really do come after the hardest cl, Pay attention to whom your energy increases and de, Sweet success☺️ I finally hiked Iron Mountain, Getting antsy for another Southwest adventure... b, Giveaway✨ because it’s the most wonderful time, Pack a bag. Tucked away in the San Juan National Forest, Island Lake is one of four bright blue lakes that hikers trek to in the Upper Ice Lake Basin. Ice Lake and Island Lake are gorgeous high-alpine mountain lakes located near our neighboring town of … Take the U.S. Forest Service Road 585 to South Mineral Campground. BLACK CANYON OF THE GUNNISON NATIONAL PARK, SAND CREEK MASSACRE NATIONAL HISTORIC SITE. Once the trail starts to really flatten out, you know you’re about five minutes away from the beautiful turquoise lake. It’s so much that we even saw some tents pitched on them. Island Lake itself is truly spectacular and one of the best hikes in Colorado, in my humble opinion as a resident of 21 years. It’s such a gem of a place 😀 Hope you’re able to make it out to see it for yourself. The unmarked but clear junction is about 2.2 miles from the trailhead and quickly climbs on a narrow dirt path for awhile on the side of the mountain before heading in through the mountains more where you’ll get your first water source (around 4:06 pm for me). I kid you not, I’ve never taken so many breaks in my life. There was just one really sketchy section of the ridge that’s narrow with a lot of loose little rocks and my fear of heights, or more like my fear of slipping and falling, got the better of me and I crawled. It may be one of the prettiest lakes on the Grand Mesa. The hike up to Ice Lake and Island Lake in Colorado's San Juan Mountains is truly an amazing one. Take a hike. We didn’t stay at this lake very long since we wanted to jump on another trail for our last night in the San Juan Mountains, so we were on our way within half an hour after a quick snack, and got off the trail from Ice Lake to the parking lot in just under two hours. Ice Lake exceeded my expectations – the blue hue in the deep section of the lake and the aqua color of the shoreline were unreal… the morning reflection of the rainbow-colored mountain from all the wildflowers made it all more surreal. The left trail climbs to Ice Lake Basin with up-and-down sections and a massive waterfall. But it was nice to learn to slow down a little and just enjoy my surroundings. The return hike is fast as the first 3.25 miles are downhill, but don’t forget to save some energy for the 3.25 mile climb from the South Fork Smith back to the trailhead. The trail is fully exposed from the junction up to Island Lake since it … In the summer, this is one of the best and easiest lake hikes in Colorado. Yes the trail is very straightforward for the whole loop! But some volunteer rangers were talking about banning camping up there in the future because the area is a tundra being destroyed by camping footprints so try to camp in areas that have previously been camped on. Thank you, Cait! This blog is only for the highlight trail of the trip: Island Lake and Ice Lake in San Juan National Forest. The hike is a steady climb within a fairly narrow valley. Follow the trail around the lake to the right and find a rock for an Instagram-worthy photo. It is also a very busy lake, don't hike this trail looking for solitude. 10,640-ft. at High point above Island Lake 10,410-ft. at Island Lake Note: There is a lot of up and down along this trail. The right turn continues the steady incline for a 1,000-foot gain in a mile, bringing you to Island Lake. Is there a distinct path to hike to ice lake and island lake? Most people go to Ice Lakes…I don’t know why. The lake has a boat ramp, wheelchair accessible fishing pier and fish cleaning station. & Take a wal, Colorful canyons and sunset on the mountains make, Resource Guide for How to Plan An Epic Backpacking Trip, Short Hike to a Swimming Hole in Stoddard Canyon, 3 Hikes in Lake Arrowhead: Plan a Weekend Getaway, Hike to Bighorn Peak in Angeles National Forest. The Island Lake Trail is located in Lamoille Canyon in the Ruby Mountains of northeastern Nevada. Hi Anila, I’m glad you find this blog post helpful 🙂 There was zero coverage to pop a squat near Island Lake, it’s a little hilly and some medium-sized boulders you can try to hide behind but you’re still very exposed and there’s no escaping that. The trail over is short, only 30 minutes (shorter if you don’t stop for all the photos of the wildflowers) and all downhill from Island Lake to Ice Lake. We woke up to the heat of the sun but stepped outside to the chill mountain air, spent the entire day hanging out at camp, enjoying the lake from all sides, had a snowball fight, and even paddled to the island in the lake on my new packraft (definitely worth hauling up)! Island Lake Via Ice Lakes Trail [CLOSED] is a 7.2 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Ophir, Colorado that features a lake and is rated as difficult. This trail leads to Island Lake. Were there some spots that were covered? Colorado Hiking Tips. Island Lake is a thirty minute hike from the trailhead and sits high and to the west of the Reservoir. The trail starts at the South Mineral Campground and heads straight into the forest at a steady ascent. PS – it’s very exposed and hard to find a covered area to use the restroom… but where there’s a will, there’s a way. Jackie, Juno and I hiked up to the Ice Lakes & Island Lake in late September 2018. The colors seem surreal, a beautiful turquoise lake, surrounded by high peaks. Set up camp. DIRECTIONS: Island Lake is located along Hwy 65 (Grand Mesa Scenic Byway), 23 miles south of the town of Mesa, CO or 16 miles north of Cedaredge, CO. I want to do this hike/camping soon, do you know if bears are an issue to be worried about at all? Leading hikers to one of the most scenic lakes in the area the Lake Charles Trail follows East Brush Creek from the Fulford Cave parking area. The trail is primarily used for hiking, rock climbing, and snowshoeing and is best used from April until September. It’s definitely more open, flatter, and easier to find camping spots at ice vs island. Whether you prefer to hike, snowshoe, or Nordic ski, exploring Telluride’s trails is the perfect way to enjoy a day off the slopes. 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