Fave trails: Hanging Lake Trail, Colorado

By travelleranto on 2014.01.09 In fave tracks hiking

After trails in Argentina and New Zealand, here comes one of my fave trails I hiked when in Colorado last summer.

“Hanging Lake is a rare example of a lake formed by travertine deposition where the natural geologic and hydro-logic processes continue to operate as they have done throughout the history of the lake.”

(Confession: I took this off the internet, I could never have written this myself with my tourist-English…).


Lonely Planet describes the trail as strenuous and steep so we knew were up for something. After finding a parking spot (which can be a real challenge during the weekends) we put on our hiking boots and up we went. Through a lush forest, along a crystal clear stream and across huge boulders. It was a great walk, not too hard (definitely not strenuous) and we were up quick enough in less than an hour. We only had a limited amount of time on this trail as we still needed to drive out to Moab the same day so we brought our hiking poles, drawing lots of attention from our fellow hikers but giving us more speed along the trail.


We had seen pictures of the end of the trail before but yet this didn’t prepare us for the magic we were about to see. When we made the last steps on the natural stairs up, this magnificent piece of nature opened up in front of us:



After we took plenty of pictures, we just sat down for a while and enjoyed the beauty, ignoring other people and just staring at this masterpiece of mother nature. Just when we were about to start our descent, someone told us that we should hike up Spouting Rock, a bit further up on the trail. Here we cooled down underneath another waterfall and played with some squirrels.


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By then we had to rush down and make our way over to Moab. Although it was just a short visit, this trail will be in our memories forever and will always be one of my personal favorites!

Some advice when planning this hike:

– The trailhead is located 10 east of Glenwood Springs, take exit 8 on I-70 to get there.usa 2013_1 122

– Try to avoid the crowds by heading out early or during weekdays. When the parking lot is full there is no overflow parking area.

– The trail is a little under 2 km, the return trip took us about 2 hrs (without stops). The elevation gain is 320 m. Even though the trail is described as strenuous, you will find it relatively easy when you’re an experienced hiker.

– Definetely make the detour to Spouting Rock, well worth it, even if you are short on time.

Special thanks to Melissa for helping me out with this!

Do you know any of these short but spectacular hikes? Please share them with me!

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nice to meet you

My name is Antonette (Anto) and I’m a 30-something outdoor fan living in The Netherlands. Traveling is my passion (hence the username travelleranto) and I like to spend my journeys the active way, mostly by hiking and camping.

If I’m not on the way, I work as a product manager for a Dutch tour operator specialized in natural destinations, such as Alaska, Argentina and Iceland. When not in the outdoors or behind an office desk, I enjoy writing (for my own site but also some Dutch websites), photography and reading.

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