Pets allowed
Allowed
Elevation Gain
245.00 ft (74.68 m)
Trail type
Loop
Distance
2.20 mi (3.54 km)
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People come to Lake Irwin Recreation Area for swimming, fishing and paddling in the lovely little lake. The scenery is spectacular, and one of the best ways to see it is to take the trail around the lake shore. This hike is easy and the rewards are great.

Starting either at the parking area next to the campground or from the short path next to campsite #11, the trail heads west toward the Ruby Mountain Range which loom over the lake from nearly every vantage point. There is a small waterfall at the inlet stream below the campground with a bench for contemplation. From here, the trail sticks pretty close to the shore with abundand wildflowers in mid summer and 360-degree views of the surrounding peaks. At the northeast side of the lake, there are several private cabins and homes near the trail but they don’t detract from the beauty of the walk.

Fishing is claimed to be very good in this lake, especially early in the season and the shore line is very accessible. Hiking this trail in either direction is good, but for the longest views of the Ruby Range, going counter-clockwise may be a shade better.

Logistics + Planning

Preferable season(s)

Summer

Congestion

Moderate

Parking Pass

General Day Use Fee

Open Year-round

Yes

Pros

Beautiful scenery. Easy and flat. Good fishing. Wildflowers.

Cons

Crosses some private property.

Trailhead Elevation

10,250.00 ft (3,124.20 m)

Highest point

10,415.00 ft (3,174.49 m)

Features

Family friendly
Vault toilet
Potable water
Near lake or river
Wildflowers
Big vistas
Fishing

Typically multi-day

No

Permit required

No

Location

Field Guide

Nearby Adventures

Sawatch Range + Elk Mountains, Colorado
Sawatch Range + Elk Mountains, Colorado
Sawatch Range + Elk Mountains, Colorado

Nearby Lodging + Camping

Sawatch Range + Elk Mountains, Colorado
Sawatch Range + Elk Mountains, Colorado
Sawatch Range + Elk Mountains, Colorado

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