Snowmass Lake

Aspen, Colorado 81612

Snowmass Lake

Snowmass Lake Professional Guide

Detailed Trail Description from our Guidebook

"The Maroon Bells–Snowmass Wilderness is one of the most popular wilderness areas in Colorado, and for good reason. Highlighting this 181,138-acre wilderness are several Fourteeners, including what are likely the most photographed peaks in the state—the Maroon Bells.

This nice overnight hike accesses the heart of this wilderness area, visiting Crater Lake before crossing west over Buckskin Gulch to Snowmass Lake. The route then drops north along Snowmass Creek to end eventually at Snowmass Fall Ranch near Snowmass Village."

Snowmass Lake Trip Reports

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Great trip up to Snowmass Lake for flat-landers. Please plan on staying two nights at the lake before going over the top to Maroon Bells. Over the top and back down is very challenging with full backpacks.
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Maroon-Snowmass Trial is a beautful jaunt through Aspen and Ponderosa forest, bordering a pleasant stream almost the whole way up. A gentle incline most of the way to the beaver ponds (6 miles) and then a bit of switchback and steep up to Snowmass Lake. There's a great 'lunch rock' with a view of Capital Peak and a waterfall, as a bonus. It was a fun adventure to pick our way across the logjam / beaver dam. This is a pleasant journey in itself, yet the big payoff is Snowmass Lake ...breathtaking! Pitch your tent nearby and enjoy a 2nd day of hiking up to one of the passes.
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This was the last time I did ths trail but a plesant memory. My round trip time was six hours. The trail to the lake is very comptible for trail running. Take lots of Power Bars! There is a very nice camping area around the lake which I intend to take advantage of some day. The lake is at about 10,000 feet. I drank from the mountain streams along the trail with no ill effects. There was lots of wildlife in the area. Listen for the marmots. Also there is a log jam to cross on the trail. I dunked my let foot going up and my right foot on the return trip. Again this is a very enjoyable trail.

Snowmass Lake Photos

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Trail Information

Nearby City
Trail Type
Skill Level
2 days
July to September
9,550 feet
Trailhead Elevation
12,462 feet
Top Elevation
White River National Forest; Maroon Bells-Snowmass Wilderness Area
Local Contacts
USGS Maroon Bells, Snowmass Mountain, Capitol Peak
Local Maps

Trail Log