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Review Highlights

It's a bit of a hike to get back here. We went off season so had an additional 2ish miles to hike... read more

Reviewed November 3, 2018
Jonesborough, Tennessee
Moderate to difficult; plan 5-6 hours

Address: 1334 Brainard Lake Road in Ward. We waited an hour in line to get into Brainard Lake... read more

Reviewed October 7, 2018
Austin, Texas
via mobile
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“brainard lake”(7 reviews)
“long lake”(3 reviews)
Brainard Lake Rd, Ward, CO
+1 303-541-2500
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Reviews (23)
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All reviews brainard lake recreation area long lake indian peaks beautiful lake glacier trailhead hike mile wildflowers moose scenery beauty wildlife colorado snow
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1 - 10 of 23 reviews
Reviewed November 3, 2018

It's a bit of a hike to get back here. We went off season so had an additional 2ish miles to hike each way because the road was closed but it was worth it (probably just shy of 14 miles roundtrip). So beautiful. Nice trails....More

Date of experience: October 2018
Thank madbeck
Reviewed October 7, 2018 via mobile

Address: 1334 Brainard Lake Road in Ward. We waited an hour in line to get into Brainard Lake Recreation area in Roosevelt National Forrest. The cost was $11 cash. Ask for a map. I went with family with various levels of stamina. I thought the...More

Date of experience: October 2018
1  Thank DarkLark15
Reviewed September 26, 2018 via mobile

Visited this place for the first time today. So beautiful and peaceful. Hiked up to long lake then onto Lake Isabelle. Lots of wildlife around and trails are well maintained. Highly recommended!

Date of experience: September 2018
Thank stevezeinner
Reviewed August 27, 2018

gorgeous lake with great views. Easy to get to if you have kids or older adults with you.It can get crowded as day goes on, so get there early to get a good fishing spot

Date of experience: September 2017
1  Thank Melissa R
Reviewed July 21, 2018

Three miles, minimal climb... maximum payoff. The switchbacks up to the lake are a little tough, but well worth the effort ...Don't miss this one !

Date of experience: July 2018
Thank stellawine
Reviewed July 8, 2018

we were here the first day that the road to the brainard Lakes area reopened. We arrived around noon and got lucky and were able to get a parking spot at the trailhead. I think it fills up fast and if it is full you...More

Date of experience: June 2018
Thank missmadison
Reviewed July 8, 2018

After 2 days of being in Denver, it felt like we had enough time to acclimatize and were ready to take on this hike. We arrived around 9:30 am and returned by 2:00 pm before the afternoon thunderstorms began. The hike is generally flat with...More

Date of experience: July 2018
2  Thank habitatbuilder2012
Reviewed September 13, 2017

My dad probably considers this his favorite hike. I have heard him talk about for over 10 years and finally got to do it with him! He considers it hard, I wouldn't though, not technical either. One of the prettiest places you can be at...More

Date of experience: July 2017
1  Thank TGN002
Reviewed August 7, 2017 via mobile

I arrived at the trailhead at 4:30 am, grabbed my camera, and began the two mile hike up to Lake Isabelle in the Indian Peaks Wilderness Area of Colorado. The scenery was spectacular, as it included wildflowers, creeks, lakes, and high mountain peaks. During the...More

Date of experience: August 2017
1  Thank mnryno
Reviewed March 7, 2017

This is a breathtaking hike that can be accomplished by a novice, but be prepared for navigating boulders and water. This is rated an easy hike, but that is all relative in that i our home state of Wisconsin it was more difficult than any...More

Date of experience: September 2016
3  Thank katieqd
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Questions & Answers
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Travel Forum Posts
Caitlin H
Charlottesville, Virginia
Favorite Hikes in Indian Peaks Wilderness Area (6 Replies)
Hello, I'm headed to RMNP with a friend in August and am planning to do a hike on the way from Denver to our cabin (flight gets in very early). It looks like there are some great trails in Indian Peaks Wilderness area near Boulder. Does anyone have any favorites? I've considered Rogers Peak Lake, Lake Dorothy, Mt. Audubon (although I think this may be too strenuous for our first day), Lake Isabelle, and Mitchell/Blue Lake. Any thoughts are super appreciated!
March 23, 2016|
Response fromCaitlin H|
Hi Babalax - thank you for the help! I would be hiking here on a Sunday and would be renting a car. I live near the Shenandoah National Park, so I'm not too worried about a moderate climb on a hike. My favorite types of hikes provide nice open vistas, and I do love alpine lakes. Do you have a recommendation between the three you mentioned above based on that? And how's the East Portal Trailhead parking? Are the road conditions similar to that of Fourth of July Trailhead? I noticed...More
Brainard Lake/Lake isabelle trail conditions (0 Replies)
Does anyone have what the conditions are on the trail to long lake and to lake isabelle? Is it doable without traction devices? I'm heading up thursday and wondering if I should hike lake isabelle or if I should do a different trail in the area. Thank You.
June 26, 2017|
Vacation in Colorado in Aug (6 Replies)
Hi, I am planning our one week vacation for this Aug. We will fly in/out Denver with a rental car. We have two girls in high school and love hiking. I have read a few posts about some areas that are much more beautiful than RMNP, so I am thinking to skip the RMNP and visit some places with better scenic and less crowd. I am wondering if anyone can give some recommendations where to hike to see wild flowers in 2nd or 3rd week in Aug this year. Maroon Bells, Hanging Lake, Lake...More
April 06, 2018|
Response fromBabalax|
I wouldn't say that other places are "much more beautiful" or "better" than RMNP. They are different. Some other parts of the state don't have the crowds of people that visit RMNP in August. Maroon Bells draws lots of people - I've read it is the most photographed location in the state. Hiking at Hanging Lake will depend on what restrictions are in place at that time. The proposed plan would cap visitors at 615 a day, close the parking lot and require permits. Details about permits, prices...More