Summary: From the parking area walk east along the paved trail. After a couple of hundred yards you will see a trail leading off to the left and marked as the trail for Hanging Lake. Take this trail all the way to the lake. The trail is a little steep and rocky, so though it is only 1 mile to the lake it may take you a little time. This canyon is beautiful though, so stop every once in a while to catch your breath and look around. The last 100 yards to the lake is steep up a cliff side with a railing on the outside. Upon reaching the lake you will find a boardwalk, please stay on this board walk as the environment at Hanging Lake is extremely fragile.
Trailhead: Hanging Lake rest area can only be accessed from the East bound lanes of I-70 in Glenwood Canyon. If you're coming from the east you must pass hanging lake, turn around at Grizzly Creek and head back east on I-70 to the Hanging Lake exit. The Hanging Lake exit is nearly 10 miles East of Glenwood springs. After taking the exit for Hanging Lake simply follow the road into the parking area. This area can be crowded during the summer, so you may have to park a ways away. (Lat:39.59302 Lon:-107.18378)
Trail Guides for Hanging Lake:
100 Classic Hikes in Colorado Second Edition
by Scott S Warren (The Mountaineers Books)
Best Seasons: Year-Round
User Groups: Hikers,
Ranger Contact: Eagle Ranger District 970-328-6388
Localhikes Reporter: This hike was submitted by Joshua Friesema, who has posted 97 other hikes on this site. To visit this reporters web site, click here.
Trail Reviews Page 1 of 7 Submit your own review
Reviewed by Andy on 10/6/2015
I hiked Hanging Lake for the 2nd time on my birthday yesterday! It had been 9 or 10 years since I first hiked this with my late wife Rosa. Discovering this place with her was breathtaking as you are just not prepared to see this hidden gem nestled in the canyons of Colorado. It's like something you would see in Hawaii! I took the opportunity to spread some of my wife's ashes and I remembered how special and magical this place really is. It's not an easy hike as it is very steep but if you take your time and pace yourself, you'll be fine. It took me 38 minutes to get up but I hike a lot and am used to altitude.
Reviewed by Felicia on 6/29/2015
It was so beautiful and so worth it....it My daughter, my husband, and I did this.. the hardest thing I have done and my 4yr old wanted to climb a mountain and that is what you do. It took me 2 1/2 hours to climb... Did I explain I'm 300 lbs and I did it...Best feeling ever!!!
Reviewed by >ines< on 9/25/2014
September 2014: Absolutely gorgeous...words can't describe that place. I was afraid if that hike will be difficult for me as a not very sporty one. But not at all. No problems. And when you're running out of air...just stop...enjoy nature...(take pictures)...smile...and walk until the hanging lake appears and enchants you with everything what this beautiful place has to offer!
Reviewed by HeathFX5 on 6/19/2013
Amazing place to shoot photos! The hike was steep, but totally worth it! Here is the professional video I shot on this trip this spring (2013): http://youtu.be/pXVLIHGM4n8
Reviewed by Laura on 7/28/2012
The view is certainly gorgeous, and well worth the work it takes to get to the top. However, this hike is rated as moderately difficult. If you're out of shape, you'll have trouble getting up to the top. Yes, it's only a mile. But it's practically entirely vertical. This hike was especially difficult for my family and I as we are NOT local, and we are absolutely not conditioned to the elevation changes, so we were gasping for air and feeling lightheaded and nauseous as soon as we started. Be careful!
Reviewed by Sharon on 6/13/2011
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Reviewed by Leslie on 12/21/2010
Hiked this twice several Summers back when I lived in Vail. A bit of a tough hike, but you'll make it just fine, as I had 70 year old couples passing me on the trail. Once you make it to the top, the hard work of getting there is immediately forgotten...what a breathtaking sight. One of the prettiest places I've ever been. Take a camera!
Reviewed by RG Napa, Ca on 8/18/2010
This is a have to do if youâ€™re in the area. The hike is a step above moderate, more towards the difficult area. Being in shape a Plus for you. All in all a very beautiful hike and place to visit. Make sure you ware the appropriate shoes and take plenty of water. The new railing is a great piece of work. Thank You to all that did the work! Donâ€™t forget the camera. (PS) The highway is well marked with directions.
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