Guanella Pass: 5 Lake Hike

  • November 4, 2012 · 7:15 AM
  • This location is shown only to members

This will involve two different trails passing by 5 different lakes over 11,000'. Both trails are above treeline, so it can get VERY WINDY and COLD. Bring warm gear (including hats and gloves) in layers. This will be good practice for the cold of the snowshoeing season ahead. The first hike will be at Guanella Pass to the Square Top Lakes (~4.6 mi RT/1,000+' total elevation gain) at over 12,000'.  After this portion, we will drive back north (and down) the pass a couple of miles to begin the second leg of the journey passing by Naylor Lake, Silver Dollar Lake, and finally, Murray Lake (12,178') just below the Continental Divide (~5.6 mi RT/1,000'+ total elevation gain).

Square Top Lakes

Square Top Lakes from Square Top Mountain











Silver Dollar & Murray Lakes


The total of these two hikes will be ~10.2 mi RT/2,100' elevation gain.

MEET AT PnR: 7:15a; Leave 7:30a

Meet at the Wooly Mammoth PnR off the 259/Morrison exit (LatLong[masked], [masked]) in Section DD across from Conoco and the Full Steam Ahead coffee house.

1) Square Top Lakes/Guanella Pass: N[masked] W[masked]
2) Parking Lot Near Silver Dollar Lake Trailhead: N[masked] W[masked]

It is possible to drive with 4WD vehicles to the Silver Dollar TH, but we'll most likely just park on Guanella Pass Rd and walk up the road to the TH. This has been factored into the distance/gain.

Take I-70W to Georgetown/Exit 228 and follow the signs through town to Guanella Pass Road. It's about 9.7 mi to the first trailhead (we will pass the 2nd TH parking area on the way).


Leashed dogs are permitted.

2-3 liters of water; snacks and/or lunch; warm clothing in layers.

The organizers take the time to plan fun and challenging events, but we are not professional guides. Therefore, you should be self-sufficient and carry the 10 essentials. On every one of our hikes, members need to know the route, have a map & compass and/or GPS and be able to find their way in case the group gets spread apart.

Inclement weather will cancel the hike.

See you there!

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  • Shrutika Gupta T.

    Amazing hike! Gorgeous scenery and great company!

    November 8, 2012

  • AC

    Good seeing everyone again and meeting all the new folks. Hope you enjoyed the hike & lunch.

    November 4, 2012

  • Anne

    A couple of really nice hikes with a great group. Pleasant weather too. Thanks, Alex

    November 4, 2012

  • Margaret J.

    Great double-header hike and fun, strong people to hike with.

    November 4, 2012

  • Jameel C.


    November 4, 2012

  • Margaret J.

    Does everyone remember that we go off Daylight Svgs. on Sunday?

    November 3, 2012

    • AC

      Thanks for the reminder! We should all be plenty rested with an extra hour. And in case there's lingering snow/ice, bring traction (microspikes, ice trekkers or yaktrax).

      November 3, 2012

    • Sarah M.

      Oh, geez, big thanks for the reminder. I'd have forgot.

      November 3, 2012

  • AC

    Last posting. Weather - Tonight: Mostly clear, with a low around 25. Sunday: Mostly sunny, with a high near 41. Breezy, with a west northwest wind 10 to 15 mph, with gusts as high as 24 mph.

    November 3, 2012

  • Margaret J.

    Lucha Cantina is a good choice for veggies & meaties.

    October 31, 2012

    • AC

      Good to hear, Margaret. Never been there before, but always nice to try a new place and support the businesses in the various CO towns.

      November 1, 2012

  • AC

    All - please update your RSVPs if you can't make it/aren't sure (even those on the Wait List). Weather looks clear and calm - 20s/30s for Sunday. If folks are interested, we may head to Lucha Cantina in Georgetown for food/drinks after the hike:!g...­

    And remember to have some ca$h for your driver - it's about 85 mi RT from the PnR so $4-5 each for three passengers per car is fair.

    October 31, 2012

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