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Best Trails

Ice Lake Basin

Silverton, CO

Ice Lakes trail has two common destinations, lower and upper. The upper basin is surrounded by awesome peaks. Vermillion, Fuller, Pilot knob and Golden Horn are climbed from this basin. Amazing blue/green lakes, late season wildflowers, moderately strenuous hike to creekfalls and waterfalls too.

  • Best Hiking

  • Best Mountain Biking

  • Best Trail Running

Recent Reviews

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Potato Lake Trail
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18 Completed 4 Reviews

This is the same Trail and Destination as the "Spud Lake Trail".
(Here is my Review posted for "Spud Lake Trail")
This is a very nice Quick / Short Hike, which serves as a good High Altitude "Intro Hike" for those not used to the thinner 9500+ air. The moderate altitude gain is spread throughout the trail, most of which is shaded but with interesting views of the surrounding Aspens as well as numerous Beaver Ponds and the exposed granite of Spud Hill and the Twilight Peaks. The destination - Spud Lake - is of decent size and very picturesque, with a 15-20min trail circumnavigating it. There are a number of primitive dispersed picnic / camping spots with crude fire rings. And the lake is deep enough, and fresh enough, to entice most hikers into the water. (This hike is also a reasonable destination during the Summer Monsoon weather, as it has no exposed ridgelines to worry about lightning or high winds.)

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Pass Trail to Engineer Mtn Trail
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18 Completed 4 Reviews

Pass Trail is the most popular route - Hike or Bike - up to the Meadows near the Junction of the Pass and Engineer Mountain Trails (and the scramble to the Summit of Engineer Mountain). There is substantial Parking a short way in along a Dirt Road across from and just a bit North of the Coal Bank Pass Pullout (with its Bathroom facilities) - but even this can get a bit crowded on good Summer Weekends. The first 2/3rds of the Trail is Tree-covered good-quality Single-track (with a few Snowbanks tucked alongside the Trail lasting well into June). The last 1/3rd traverses Open Meadows bathed in Wildflowers throughout most of the Summer and even into Autumn. The views from this upper portion include Engineer and Grand Turk and Sultan Mountains plus Snowdon and Twilight and even peeks of the West Needle Mountains across the other side of the Lime Creek drainage. If one still has Time and Energy, Pass Trail can be included as part of several different Loop or Shuttle Hikes.

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Ice Lake Basin
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2 Completed 1 Reviews

Beautiful Hike! Hiked on Sept 2nd....Thoroughly enjoyed everything about this trail. The meadow has pretty flowers and the colors are starting to change. The day was bright and sunny which made ice lake turquoise and azure blue. I am hoping to get up there again in the next week or so and taking in the other lakes up top.

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Spud Lake
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3 Completed 2 Reviews

I agree with other reviews that this hike is an easy one, beautiful lake at the end. The 3 miles or so of Lime Creek Rd getting there were pretty rocky. Our F150 handled it fine, but I would just be aware of this! I thought this lake was much prettier than Crater Lake just a bit further north.

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Crater Lake Trail
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3 Completed 2 Reviews

My husband and I made this a day hike. WE were pretty pooped at the end of the 11 mile hike, but we are from TX and the elevation starting point was probably part of our issue. Beautiful hike. I was just a little disappointed in the lake. I'm not sure why, but I've seen others that I enjoyed more. Potato Lake or Spud Lake, for instance.
BUT, this was a beautiful hike. Just a bit too long for a day hike for us. We are still more comfortable w/ 5-7 mile hikes.

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Ice Lake Basin
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22 Completed 1 Reviews

Best hike I've ever been on. You're really missing out if you don't do a loop through to Island Lake as well. We made this a two day one night backpacking trip. There are lots of spots to set up camp in the lower ice lake basin area if you're not looking to camp above tree-line by the lakes. We got to the lower lakes basin where you meet the sign directing you towards Island Lake to the right or Ice Lake to the left. We started towards Island lake and after about 500 feet just before a large boulder, turned right up a hill and found a site equipped with a fire circle and 360 view of the valley! We dropped our bags here and then headed towards Island Lake. This lake took our breath away and luckily we ran into a sole hiker who instructed us beyond the lake on a path towards Ice Lake. We had been planning to descend and re-ascend to ice lake. This saved us a tremendous amount of time and energy and we were able to loop past ice lake, down to lower ice lake, and then return to the path to descend to our campsite a different way! Having descended down the ice lake trail we realized ascending the island lake trail was much less treacherous!! It seemed everything fell into place for us just by fate. What a weekend!

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Ice Lake Basin
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4 Completed 4 Reviews

Did the hike on august 17th 2014 with my wife and Saint Bernard! (Two diff people for all you funny people)...this was a long hike up due to elevation change and climb, but honestly the best hike I have ever been on! Amazing views and surreal beauty when you reach the top!!! We will be going prob a couple time a year now... We have two kids ages 6&4 and feel it's too much for them... I would say age 8 and up! Couple of places you need to pay attention to, and would be very difficult trying to carry child through them! Enjoy your hiking!!!

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Engineer Mountain Trail
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4 Completed 4 Reviews

Great hike for all levels... Even took 3&5 year old with us! They did great, with a few hand hold places!

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Ice Lake Basin
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6 Completed 6 Reviews

July 27th I did this hike....I had camped up at Clear Lake the night before and after shooting the wildflowers and sunrise I made my way down to the upper trailhead on clear lake road...found a parking spot and left the trailhead at 9am...This trailhead cuts off about 500ft elevation gain instead of starting at the campground trailhead...Where the 2 trails meet about 200 yds into the hike you have to cross a waterfall...If your feet and shoes are already wet don't make the mistake I did by changing into dry shoes and socks...you will get your feet wet...after this its all uphill until you reach the lower basin...This hike is no joke, take lots of water and some snacks to keep your body fueled for the climb... Once you crest the first hill into the lower basin you see majestic peaks and meadows of wildflowers....the views and surrounding areas are gorgeous....Then way off in the distance on the other side of the basin you can see the people in front of you going up again on their way to the upper basin...Don't feel bad if you take a quick break in the lower basin to get water and food... you earned it....get your breath and start the climb up to the upper basin...you wont regret it....it's like nothing I have ever seen before...blue green lake surrounded by massive mountains and fields of wildflowers....be sure to head over to the creek that is exiting the lake for some nice views as well.... I left the trailhead at 9am and was back down by 1:45pm due to a lightning storm that pushed us off the mountain....As I was coming down just after leaving Ice Lake there was a young lady maybe 28 or so breastfeeding her baby as she hiked up....I think everyone who walked past her was surprised to see that, given the difficulty of the trail....

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Ice Lake Basin
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1 Completed 1 Reviews

Does anyone know what old mines or mines are located near the Ice Lake Basin? Thanks!

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