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King Lake Trail

  

From the trailhead, the Devils Thumb Trail climbs steeply for about a half-mile on an old road. Cross the bridge and stay on the main Devil’s Thumb Trail; do not take the Bypass Trail. Pass the turnoff for Lost Lake and follow the King Lake Trail. It soon enters the Indian Peaks Wilderness and steadily gains 1,200' in elevation over the next four miles. Towards the upper end, the Twin Trestles of the Moffat Road are visible clinging to the slope. About a mile before reaching King Lake, the trail makes several switchbacks.

The King Lake Trail passes King Lake, and climbs a ridge for half a mile to the Continental Divide. There it meets the High Lonesome Trail. A loop from Hessie to King Lake to High Lonesome Trail to Devils Thumb Lake and back to Hessie, makes a great fifteen-mile overnight backpacking trip (permits required).

Click here for a trail description. National Weather Service Forecast

At a Glance

Permit Info: This trail lies within the Indian Peaks Wilderness Area:
  • Camping permits required for all overnight trips between June 1 and September 15. Overnight permits cost $5 per group, per trip from June 1 through September 15.
  • Organized groups are required to have a permit for both camping and day-hiking year round. Day-hiking permits are free.
Usage: Heavy
Restrictions: Indian Peak Wilderness restrictions apply:
  • Motorized and mechanized vehicles are prohibited.
  • Pets must be on a hand-held leash at all times.
  • Campfires prohibited.
  • Campsites must be at least 100 feet away from water and trail.
  • Group size is limited to 12 (people and livestock combined).
Fishing and hunting: permitted in accordance with regulations established by the Colorado Parks & Wildlife.
Closest Towns: Nederland, Colorado
Water: Lakes and streams; treat water for drinking.
Restroom: Practice Leave No Trace principles
Operated By: U.S. Forest Service
Information Center: Boulder Ranger District, 2140 Yarmouth Ave, Boulder, CO 80301, Phone 303-541-2500, Fax 303-541-2515; Contact Us

General Information

Directions:

From Nederland, head south on Colorado Highway 119 for 0.6 miles. Turn west onto County Road 130, signed for Eldora. Follow the paved road through the valley to the Town of Eldora, where the pavement ends. Continue beyond the end of the pavement for 0.75 miles to the fork in the road. The left fork goes to Hessie Trailhead.


Activities


Hiking

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Backpacking

This trail is within the Indian Peaks Wilderness Area, where camping permits are required June 1 - September 15. Much of the King Lake Trail progresses at a fairly constant grade, until the last mile before King Lake. The Twin Trestles of the Moffat Railroad are visible clinging to the south valley wall. Destinations include King Lake, Bob Lake, Betty Lake (via Bob and Betty Lakes Trail #810) and Rollins Pass. This trail intersects Devils Thumb Trail and High Lonesome Trail.
Fire InformationCampfires are prohibited year-round.
Elevation descThe last stretch of trail to the Continental Divide is the steepest segment, gaining 750 feet over one mile.
Difficulty Level: Intermediate

Day Hiking

This trail is within the Indian Peaks Wilderness Area. Much of the King Lake Trail progresses at a fairly constant grade, until the last mile before King Lake. The Twin Trestles of the Moffat Railroad are visible clinging to the south valley wall. Destinations include King Lake, Bob Lake, Betty Lake (via Bob and Betty Lakes Trail #810) and Rollins Pass. This trail intersects Devils Thumb Trail and High Lonesome Trail.
Fire InformationCampfires are prohibited year-round.
Elevation descThe last stretch of trail to the Continental Divide is the steepest segment, gaining 750 feet over one mile.
Difficulty Level: Intermediate

Horse Riding & Camping

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Areas & Activities

Location

 
  Area/Length : 
From Hessie Trailhead to: King Lake - 5.2 miles; Betty Lake - 5.5 miles; Bob Lake - 6 miles; Contine

  Elevation : 
9,000' - 11,650'

 



https://www.fs.usda.gov/recarea/arp/recreation/climbing/recarea/?recid=28290&actid=51