This is a short hike along the Ruby Crest Trail to the top of Liberty Pass. The route is easily accessible, moderately difficult, passes by several alpine lakes, climbs a mountain pass, and ends at a gorgeous viewpoint of Liberty Lake.
Begin at the southwestern corner of Road's End TH, across from the pit toilets. A small interpretive sign displays a rough overview of the passes and lakes encountered along the Ruby Crest Trail. Continue to the right onto some excellent single track. The trail is in great condition and well defined all the way to Liberty Pass.
In about a quarter mile, the trail approaches its first creek crossing. There are a few faint side trails just before the crossing, leading towards the bank of the creek. Stay on the well worn path. Several faint side trails occasionally diverge from the Ruby Crest Trail, but the route felt obvious.
At mile 2 you will encounter the only trail junction you need to pay attention to. Continue left towards Lamoille Lake. Going right will take you on a different trail back to Road's End, in 1.5 miles. This presents a possible lasso loop option, or a way to slightly shorten the hike if desired. I decided to return the way I came.
Pass by Lamoille Lake, and begin the ascent up some switchbacks to Liberty Pass. The views looking back towards Lamoille Canyon, Lamoille Lake, and the surrounding high country are excellent along this stretch!
After reaching the pass, I recommend continuing another quarter mile, where you will enter the Ruby Mountains Wilderness area and get a great view of Liberty Lake on a large rock outcropping. You are now staring into the backcountry of the Ruby Mountains! Do you feel liberated?
Water along the entire length of the Ruby Crest Trail is reported to be excellent. This particular section of the trail crosses a couple of small creeks, and several lakes.
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.