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This is likely a great time to hike this trail!  Check out "Prefered" months below, keep in mind this is an estimate.

Shadow Mountain, CO

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10 1 0
Guide 1 Triplog  0 Topics
Rated  Favorite Wish List CO > Northwest
Rated
4
4 of 5 by 1
 
0
Statistics
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Difficulty 3.5 of 5
Route Finding 1 of 5
Distance Round Trip 9.8 miles
Trailhead Elevation 8,381 feet
Elevation Gain 1,546 feet
Accumulated Gain 1,662 feet
Avg Time Round Trip 4-5 hrs
Kokopelli Seeds 18.11
Interest Peak
Backpack Yes
feature photo
Photos Viewed All Mine Following
Inaugural Calculation on Button Tap!
10  2018-07-27 maryl
Author maryl
author avatar Guides 1
Routes 9
Photos 119
Trips 7 ( 76 miles )
Age 54 Female Gender
Location Chandler,az
Historical Weather
Trailhead Forecast
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Preferred   Sep, Jun, May, Aug
Seasons   Spring to Late Autumn
Sun  5:42am - 6:16pm
Official Route
 
0 Alternative
 
Water

Likely In-Season!
Overview
This short but moderately strenuous out and back is the perfect day hike. I believe its one of the less traveled hikes in the grand lake area because of the elevation gain. The day we hiked we passed just a handful of hikers and when we summited we were the only hikers at the fire tower.


Access
The trailhead is easy to find, it begins at the Shadow Mountain Dam staging area and is also a small section of the CDT. Parking is ample at the trailhead.

Hike
The well marked & well traveled trail skirts Shadow Mountain lake for the first mile or so. After reaching a well marked trail junction the trail to summit Shadow Mountain is clearly marked. The uphill climb begins. This uphill climb is very distinctive. The trail to the summit travels entirely uphill at a good slope. You definitely know your traveling uphill but it doesn't feel like it. One knows in the annals of their hiking mind that your gaining elevation but the body doesn't feel the gain. Weird. Once you start gaining some good elevation you'll hike along a ridge with beautiful views of the Grand Lake area.

Soon after leaving the face of Shadow Mountain the trail heads through a huge blow down area. The wind was whipping at a good pace the day we hiked and you can hear the trees snapping. It is quite surreal.

The trail starts to switchback about 0.25 miles from the summit. The last push seemed the hardest. At the top you'll be faced with stunning views of the Grand Lake area and the Rocky Mountains. There is an old fire tower that was unacceptable due to construction. There were 2 small water sources along the trail. If your carrying a full reservoir of water one shouldn't need to filter and refill. After spending some time at the summit the weather started rolling in and we began the downhill trek. On our return hike we encountered some areas of fresh blow down we had to move or maneuver around.

Synopsis
This hike offers a bit of everything and some moose as well. There is an ample amount of wildlife in the area. The trail is well maintained but beware of blow down.

Check out the Official Route and Triplog.

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2018-08-23 maryl
    WARNING! Hiking and outdoor related sports can be dangerous. Be responsible and prepare for the trip. Study the area you are entering and plan accordingly. Dress for the current and unexpected weather changes. Take plenty of water. Never go alone. Make an itinerary with your plan(s), route(s), destination(s) and expected return time. Give your itinerary to trusted family and/or friends.

    Most recent Triplog Review
    Shadow Mountain
    rating optionrated 4rated 4rated 4rated 4
    Great Hike! We originally planned for this to be a full moon hike but the weather Gods had a different plan. After some section hiking the CDT from Steamboat springs we decided to head into Grand Lake and check it out. We were pleasantly surprised. We camped at the Green Ridge Campground which is right on Shadow Mountain lake. Nothing great just a typical FS campground. The full moon was looming so we decided we would summit Shadow Mountain and catch the rise. Unfortunately that didn't happen but the hike was stunningly beautiful. The first mile or so is a section of the CDT heading into Grand Lake. This section skirts the lake for about a mile. At the trail junction the trail heads up, up, up. its a steady climb with the only switchbacks at the top. The hike takes you on the face of the mountain then skirts below the ridge through some wicked blow down areas. The Views at the top are pretty and worth the strenuous elevation gain. The fire tower is under construction so it was off limits. The warning tape wrapped the tower tightly. After enjoying the scenery and a snack the weather started to roll in and thunder cracked in the distance. We hiked down enjoying the wildlife on the way. Moose a plenty! Great day hiking. We passed only a handful of hikers and no one at the summit when we were atop! We hiked mid day and the weather was beautiful in the low 80's. Solomon my Doberman enjoyed the hike as well.
    There were two small water sources after leaving the lake area.

    Wildflowers
    There were some wild flowers by the lake .

    Permit $$
    None

    Rocky Mountain National Park
    $20 per vehicle, good for up to 7 days. It is free to hike but backpacking/camping permits are extra. View NPS Info


    Directions
    Map Drive
    or
    Road
    Paved - Car Okay

    To hike
    From Grand Lake head south on route 34 and turn left onto county road 66. Travel to the end and you'll wee the parking area by the Shadow Mountain Dam.
    page created by joebartels on Aug 23 2018 1:21 pm
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