Bucket List Hikes to Squeeze in Before Summer Ends

All of us love a fantastic fall hike that is crisp-aired — but once the weather changes a number of our hikes are no longer reachable. The tail-end of hot weather would be the time to bag those peaks that have been in your summertime bucket list. Not only will you be able to get the most out of the last sunny days, but August and September are the perfect months to hit those high-alpine paths. Hikes that boast a Insta-worthy altitude, complete with 360-degree views and pristine freshwater lakes are clear of snowbut they won’t be quite long.

We’ve got you covered on your end-of-summer adventure. Whether you want to remain local or remote, keep it shorter or strenuous, you ll make certain to find your perfect hoorah. Hit on alpine lakes and these stunning summits prior to ice hockey and snow ruin the fun.

1. Sky Pond

Photo from Scott Mann.

Location: State Forest State Park, American Lakes Trail

Distance: 7.9 miles

Elevation: 11,380 ft

Difficulty: Moderate 

Why we like it: This alpine lake would be the epitome of a hidden gem (we’re never great at keeping secrets). Located in Beautiful State Forest State Parkthis place bumps right up from Rocky Mountain National Park, giving you exactly the views with no crowds. Hike through woods and meadows till you hit American Lake 6.8 kilometers in, then understand its title while looking over it from the Snow Lake viewpoint. The last half mile up to Snow Lake is a scramble, placing you in a bowl with jagged mountains jetting up all around you, Snow Lakefront and center.  Plus, this region also offers camp spots everywhere with no permit required other. It s backpacking fantasy come true.

4. Square Top Lakes

Photo courtesy of Logan Williams.

Location: Boulder Open Space, Boulder, Colorado

Distance: 7.7 miles

Elevation: 8,459 ft

Difficult: Moderate

Why we like it: Head up on a Saturday to this fairly peak. Starting about the paths in the Boulder Open Space system, the trail climbs up and through meadows of wildflowers, getting a bit more difficult towards the surface. Despite the altitude, the 360-degree perspectives on Top are unmatched with Rocky Mountain National Park to the north east, the foothills to the southwest, Boulder and Denver to the west and the Indian Peaks to the westcoast.

6. Brainard Lake

Photo from Kyle Cooper

Location: Brained Lake Recreation Area, near Nederland, Colorado

Distance: 6.1 miles

Elevation: ~10,000 ft

Difficulty: Easy

Why we like it: This trail has become the walk in the park” type route with this list. With any altitude advantage, Brainard Lake is ideal for a weekend group outing. Pack a picnic and then go winding through the woods. The lake itself features a spectacular backdrop of  the Indian Peaks. Note that the road to the rec region closes in November, giving you all the more reason to hit the trail!

7.  Mount Bierstadt

A spring view of Mount Bierstadt, with a mountain goat standing on a rocky cliff at front, found from a ridge of Mount Evans. Front Array of Rocky Mountains, Colorado, USA via Thinkstock.

Location: Mount Evans Wilderness, near Georgetown, Colorado

Distance: 6.9 miles

Elevation: 14,065 ft


Why we like it: Hailed as a beginner” 14er with a shorter space and minimal scaling, Mount Bierstadt is a driveway from Denver with all the trailhead just off Guanella Pass. Visit exactly what it ’ s all about with this beaut if you harbor ’ t this summer gotten into a 14er.

8. Chasm Lake

Photo from Taylor Sienkiewicz.

Location: Pike National Forest, near Alma, Colorado

Distance: 7.6 miles

Elevation: 14, 295 feet (Mount Lincoln)

Why we like it: Here it is–the big one. You re likely to summit four 14ers in 1 day. Sounds badass right? Don ’t allow you frighten, notice the entire loop will be less than eight kilometers. Even though the magnitude put this hike the views of the Mosquito Range and lakes from these peaks keeps you feeling on top of the planet. The sensation of scaling up and down through the clouds daily would be for.