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South Park Trail to Square Top Mountain

  • Jun 28, 2012 · 8:00 AM
  • This location is shown only to members

Guanella Pass is famous for its high-alpine scenery. But also at the pass, on the opposite side of the road from the Mount Bierstadt trailhead, lies the trailhead for scenic Square Top Lakes. The trail shares parking with several other routes, including the popular fourteener, Mount Bierstadt (Geneva Mountain Trailhead).

This is a beautiful moderate 4 mile roundtrip tundra hike to two glacial lakes on the Square Top Lakes Trail (sometimes called South Park Trail). The trail begins at the west Guanella Pass parking lot and travels south above treeline on a level trail through tundra flowers and drops into a rich boggy area prior to rising gently across a floristic south-facing slope. It then turns west to reach the lower of the two Square Top Lakes. More than six dozen wildflower species enliven this 1.5-mile alpine hike. Let's see if we can spot any!

The entire trail is without trees which allows you 360 degree views the entire hike. It could become windy, so come prepared. The trail has a slow and steady incline up toward the two small glacial lakes at the base of Square Top Mountain. The trail is well traveled and it is best to hike early before the afternoon storms roll in.

Direction to Trailhead: I-70 West to Georgetown, Exit 228. Turn left at the exit (15th Street) and pass the Visitor's Center, turn right on Argentine Street. Follow into town and turn left on main street (11th Street). Follow main street through town and you will see a sign on the right pointing to Guanella Pass - this should be Rose Street, turn right and follow up to Guanella Pass Road. It's about 5 miles to the pass and the trailhead.

Carpooling: Meet at Woolly Mammoth, Section CC, across from the Conoco Station at 6:30am and we'll form some carpools. The parking lot is located at the I-70 & Morrison Exit 259.

Optional Lunch after the hike in Idaho Springs at the Smokin Yards BBQ (2736 Colorado Blvd, Idaho Springs,[masked]).

See you there!

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  • Linda

    Gorgeous escape from the heat wave. Flowers were awesome. Great group of friendly hikers. Thanks, Debbie!

    June 29, 2012

  • Charly

    Newly paved road to TH, wide open vistas, lakes, lunch, new & familiar people. Is there a better way to spend the morning?

    June 29, 2012

  • Jim O.

    Very nice hike. Great views!

    June 29, 2012

  • Debbie

    Loved this hike to Square Top Lakes- not too hard and very scenic with all the different terrain, wildflowers and views! This is definitely a repeat! One of these days I might try to summit Square Top Mountain!

    June 28, 2012

  • A former member
    A former member

    I will be at the Wooly Lot. If it is a short hike I may go a little further. I like elevation and the cool temps.

    June 26, 2012

  • Jim O.

    I will go to Wooly and will drive to the hike if needed

    June 26, 2012

  • Debbie

    Please add a note to your RSVP if you plan on meeting at Woolly Mammoth. Thanks.

    June 26, 2012

  • Debbie

    FYI - we will only hike to the base of Square Top Mountain where the lakes are for a total of 4 miles. If you want to go further, make sure your carpoolers have the same plan!

    June 13, 2012

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