Arapaho Glacier Trail (east) is a hiking trail in Boulder County, Colorado. It is within Indian Peaks Wilderness Area and Roosevelt National Forest. It is 5.4 miles long and begins at 10,003 feet altitude. Traveling the entire trail is 10.9 miles with a total elevation gain of 3,076 feet. The 15., 12, 14, 10, and 11 camp sites are near the trailhead. The 16 camp site can be seen along the trail.
"You can enjoy a wildflower-studded hike to stunning views of Neva and Jasper peaks and Dorothy and Diamond Lakes. It is a nonstop Rocky Mountain panorama on a gradually ascending trail. You can also visit the ruins of the Fourth of July Mine at 11,245 feet. If you are ambitious, you can take this trail across the Continental Divide and into the Grand Valley. You can also summit Mount Neva (12,814 feet) from Caribou Pass, but it is an exposed, difficult rock route." Read more
"Although it’s size today is scarcely a shadow of its former mass, Arapaho Glacier still retains the distinction of being Colorado’s largest glacier. It is only about a quarter-mile long, a half-mile wide, and 200 feet thick-tiny by world standards. Nevertheless, it really is a glacier and not just a snowfield. Geologists from the University of Colorado have confirmed that it is still moving, ever so slowly, so it is classified as a true glacier. Arapaho is also one of the state’s most easily accessible glaciers. It is situated only 3.5 miles from the Fourth of July Trailhead, and there is an excellent viewpoint high above its southern slopes in a shallow pass between Caribou Peak and South Arapaho Peak." Read more
"Nestled in a high alpine cirque in the south end of the Indian Peaks Wilderness, Arapaho Glacier is one of only a few glaciers still found in Colorado. Although geologists are not quite sure whether these permanent ice fields are left over from the last ice age or if they formed within the last few thousand years, they do show signs of movement characteristic of glaciers. Because Arapaho Glacier falls within land set aside by the City of Boulder for its water supply, it is off-limits to hikers. It is possible, however, to hike to the south ridge of South Arapaho Peak for a good look at the geologic anomaly." Read more
"Arapaho Glacier is the most southerly glacier in the Rocky Mountains. The Arapaho Glacier Trailhead begins at the entrance to Rainbow Lakes Campground. Arapaho Glacier Trail, which climbs to unsurpassed alpine tundra views, coincidentally wanders back and forth between watershed and Indian Peaks Wilderness, and from which hikers constantly are reminded not to stray." Read more
"Archeological speculation suggests Native American use of this pass for some 4,000 years, but the Arapaho did not show up until the late 1700s. At 11,906 feet, well above tree line, Arapaho Pass seems inaccurately described as a low point on the Continental Divide in Indian Peaks. Rather, it is the least high point over which to pass from Middle Park on the West Slope to Denver and Boulder on the East Slope." Read more
"As you walk up the Arapaho Glacier Trail past treeline, a spectacular sight unfolds before your eyes. Jagged peaks on the spine of the Continental Divide suddenly appear above the rounded curve of the alpine tundra. Far below to the right is Boulder’s beautiful Silver Lake Watershed, with its string of pristine lakes. The alpine tundra, rich with colorful wild?owers, stretches to the horizon. At the 2.5-mile viewpoint turnaround, you catch a glimpse of the remains of the Arapaho Glacier. Two additional options are o?ered here, depending on the weather and your preference." Read more