Many Tellurites will tell you, they came for the winter, stayed for the summer. And with the many hiking, biking trails and climbing areas to devour, who can blame them? To continue our exploration of the area’s hiking trails, we bring you our July hike of the month: Hope Lake.
Hope Lake is a great hike, ending at one of the region’s most beautiful alpine lakes. An added bonus? Views of high-country wildflowers, Trout Lake and of the Lizard Head Wilderness that can be seen along the trail keep your mind off of the climb and into focusing on the beauty of your surroundings.
TIP: It’s rainbow season in Telluride (hey, it sounds better than monsoon season, right?). Make sure you get an early start on this hike to avoid getting stuck above tree line during an afternoon thunder storm. Walk portions of the perimeter to see different views of the lake. Feeling extra frisky, take a swim!
How to get there: From Telluride, travel 3 miles west on State Hwy 145. Turn left at the first highway intersection, continuing south on State Hwy 145 for approx. 8.5 miles. Turn left onto County Road 63A (signed on highway as “Trout Lake”). Proceed on CR 63L for approx. 1.5 miles, then left onto Forest Road #627. Proceed up this rough, rocky road 2.5 miles to the Hope Lake Trailhead. See map below. Look for cars parked at the trailhead. If the trailhead switchback is full, just below the trailhead is an extra pullout for parking.
DISTANCE: 5 miles round-trip.
Trail Etiquette Reminder: Don’t cut switchbacks. This trail sees quite a bit of love throughout the summer. Make sure you stay on the trail and don’t forget to be friendly to your fellow hikers. Learn more about trail etiquette here.
SKILL BUILDING EVENTS AT CLIMBING WALL
FREE to members, $5 non-members (unless otherwise notes)
Thursday, February 27: Telluride Mountain Club presents CLIMBING ESSENTIALS – Technical skill building with Angela Hawse, Guide, Alpinist, Sponsored Athlete and Motivational Speaker. (more…)
It was a good weekend to get out in the mountains. The monsoon flow shut off and the flowers were out in force.
We hiked to the summit of Sunshine Peak via the East ridge on Saturday. A non-technical hike but without any established trail so a bit of navigation is required.
A view of Lizard Head from near the summit
We turned off the highway just S of the Ophir turn and drove down the high clearance but good condition road that heads W above the mine tailings stabilization work and ends up above Ames by the Lake Fork and Galloping Goose trail. Parked at switchback with the nice bridge with the big metal rails and GG trail marker. Walked across the bridge up the trail a short distance before leaving the GG trail and going uphill on old road/trail at a green gate. followed old road uphill until it ended in a meadow. We set a waypoint there and it was helpful on the return. It’s a dense forest with multiple minor gullies and features so hard to see any landmarks etc.
Travel for a couple of hours uphill thru aspen/spruce forest with deadfall and occasional meadow/clearings in steep terrain. Avoid any South or North facing fall line directions and try to keep going up and generally west.
CK was here
Nearing treeline the East ridge you are on becomes more defined and the way is obvious. Follow the East ridge to the summit. Total car to car time for us was approximately 6 hours. Some celebrity entries in the summit register including this one.
View Sunshine Peak.kml in a larger map