Forest Service and City of Glenwood Springs announce prices and operator for Hanging Lake shuttle

February 22, 2019

Forest Service and City of Glenwood Springs announce prices and operator for Hanging Lake shuttle

The Hanging Lake shuttle and reservation system will provide efficient visitor transportation while protecting a National Natural Landmark


GLENWOOD SPRINGS, Colo. – The Forest Service and the City of Glenwood Springs are pleased to announce that H2O Ventures was awarded the contract for the highly anticipated Hanging Lake Shuttle service, set to launch on May 1, 2019. The new reservation and shuttle system will provide a sustainable visitor experience that protects the fragile Hanging Lake ecosystem and continues to support local tourism.

“After years of planning and substantial interest and support from the community, I couldn’t be happier to be reaching this major milestone for Hanging Lake,” said Aaron Mayville, Eagle-Holy Cross District Ranger. “The shared stewardship between the Forest Service, the City of Glenwood Springs and H2O Ventures will improve the visitor experience and the ecological health of the trail and the lake.”

The price for a peak-season reservation will be $12 per person, and will be available for purchase online at or in-person at the Hanging Lake Welcome Center. The online Hanging Lake reservation system is scheduled to go live April 1. The Hanging Lake Welcome Center, which will open on May 1, 2019, will be located at 110 Wulfsohn Road in Glenwood Springs. Visitors can find more information about Hanging Lake trip planning at or by calling the Hanging Lake information line at 970-384-6309.

"We are pleased to continue our partnership with the Forest Service and to award H2O Ventures the contract for the Hanging Lake Shuttle service. This is an exciting collaboration that will help protect and maintain the natural beauty of Hanging Lake while still allowing visitors and locals the opportunity to experience this popular attraction,” stated Mayor Mike Gamba.

Ken Murphy, co-owner of H2O Ventures and contract recipient added, "Our ability to connect people to nature through amazing experiences is our passion, and we are confident that we can provide not just a shuttle service, but a professional, high-quality experience for those visiting Hanging Lake.” H20 Ventures is co-owned by Ken Murphy and Duke Bradford who have worked collaboratively for the past three years to offer adventure tourism and transportation services throughout the mountain region of Colorado.

The Hanging Lake parking area in Glenwood Canyon will be closed to personal vehicles during the peak season, May 1 to October 31, when the shuttle service is in operation. Those wishing to bike to the trailhead and hike to Hanging Lake still need to secure a reservation in advance.

The Forest Service and City of Glenwood Springs entered into a partnership in fall of 2018 to develop and manage the Hanging Lake experience under the new Hanging Lake Management Plan. The goal of the partnership is to enact management actions that balance the preservation of Hanging Lake’s natural resources for future generations to enjoy while also supporting local tourism and improving the recreation experience. 

“The reservation system and shuttle service that the city and H2O Ventures have put together will be a great step toward relieving the significant pressure that Hanging Lake has felt over the years, and a percentage of the money from reservations will go directly toward maintaining and improving this spectacular natural resource in the future,” Mayville added. 

The price of the reservation supports the Hanging Lake visitor experience, with 5% of overall revenue going back toward the partnership and the long-term stewardship and operations of Hanging Lake. The cost of the reservation includes guaranteed free parking and access to the Hanging Lake Welcome Center, the ease of an online reservation system, shuttle service to and from Hanging Lake, and ranger presence to provide visitors with environmental education and interpretation.

Visit Glenwood Springs is helping to brand the Hanging Lake visitor experience, which will include informational materials that will be prominent at the Hanging Lake Welcome Center, on the shuttle, and at other partner locations.

“The new reservation system and Hanging Lake shuttle service will provide an enhanced visitor experience making visiting Hanging Lake more efficient while at the same time protecting this fragile natural treasure,” said Lisa Langer, director of tourism promotion for Visit Glenwood.

Colorado Department of Transportation, a key partner in the Hanging Lake Shuttle planning and operational efforts, is working on signs, automatic gates, and other on-site details to help direct visitors during the peak season. Automatic gates along the eastbound off-ramp to Hanging Lake will only allow shuttles, emergency and authorized vehicle access during the peak season.

During the off-peak season, November 1 to April 30, visitors will still need to make a reservation through the reservation system for $10 to visit Hanging Lake. Visitors will be able to drive their own vehicles and park at the Hanging Lake parking lot during this time. Enforcement and monitoring will take place throughout the year to ensure compliance.

For additional information please contact:

Visit Glenwood Springs at 970-945-6580 or