Hiking Project Logo

A beautiful trail up to Hope Lake where you can find a tremendous amount of wildflowers in July and early August.


Your Rating: Rating Rating Rating Rating Rating      Clear Rating
Your Difficulty:
Your Favorites: Add To-Do · Your List
Zoom in to see details
Map Key

6.3

Miles

10.2

KM

Out and Back

12,440' 3,792 m

High

10,755' 3,278 m

Low

1,804' 550 m

Up

1,805' 550 m

Down

11%

Avg Grade (6°)

30%

Max Grade (17°)

Dogs Off-leash

Features Lake · Views · Wildflowers

Dirt road to trailhead is rough in spots but accessible with an '06 Subaru Outback. Overflow parking lot on the left is available before the trailhead parking.

Overview

Yet another tremendous alpine lake in the San Juans. Not too strenuous, yet not too easy either.

Description

The trail winds through a sub-alpine forest, goes over streams, and climbs above the tree line, offering wonderful views of Trout Lake, Lizard Head, and Vermillion Mountain along the way. The easiest way to get there is to drive 4.5 miles from Lake Trout to the trailhead, and a high-clearance vehicle is highly recommended. The alternative is to walk or mountain bike that road to the trailhead. From that point the hike is 5 miles round trip with 1,200 feet of elevation gain. The first mile is very pleasant, going through a subalpine forest with little net elevation gain. After that the trail is steeper and rockier, but it is still pleasant. As you go up, look to your left toward Vermillion Mountain and inspiring views. If you turn back toward the trailhead, especially right above the tree line, you'll see Trout Lake in the distance. At last the beautiful blue lake appears at the base of the 13,752-foot San Miguel Peak. Fall colors are best in mid to late September. Depending on the year, the first week of October may also be good, though at that time you need to be ready for rapidly changing weather, including winter conditions. Even when the weather is pleasant, ice in the various streams is evidence of the cold nights at those elevations. Further, precipitation often causes the trail to be muddy in spots. After the hike, Lake Trout can be a great location to see the sunset, especially in fall with the hills northeast of the lake carpeted with golden aspen.

Flora & Fauna

Summer months are best for alpine wildflowers. Fauna in the lower elevations may include birds such as red-tailed hawks as well as deer, elk and foxes. In the higher elevations it is possible to observe Stelleras jays as well as pikas and marmots.

Contacts

Shared By:

Don Smith with improvements by Zander Göpfert

Trail Ratings

  5.0 from 8 votes

#3

in Silverton

#819

Overall
  5.0 from 8 votes
5 Star
100%
4 Star
0%
3 Star
0%
2 Star
0%
1 Star
0%
Recommended Route Rankings

#3

in Silverton

#167

in Colorado

#819

Overall
2 Views Last Month
1,209 Since Aug 19, 2018
Intermediate Intermediate

0%
0%
83%
17%
0%
0%

Photos

Hope Lake
Jun 30, 2021 near Mountai…, CO
Hope lake
Jun 30, 2021 near Mountai…, CO

0 Comments

Weather


Current Trail Conditions

Unknown
Add Your Check-In

Check-Ins

Jun 29, 2022
Valerie Norton
https://valhikes.blogspot.com/2022/06/hope-lake.html
Jul 31, 2021
Huzefa Badaruddin
2.4mi — 2h 30m
Nov 19, 2020
Emily B
BEST 7mi — 2h 00m
Aug 22, 2020
Christy Tornelli
Aug 5, 2019
kstorck
4.6mi — 2h 55m
Jul 14, 2019
Daylene York
6.4mi
Jun 9, 2014
Kelsey Reher
Welcome

Join the Community! It's FREE

Already have an account? Login to close this notice.