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Maroon Lake Trailhead
Added by BillMiddlebrook

Location:  Elk Mountains
14ers Served:  Maroon Peak, North Maroon Peak, Pyramid Peak
Road Type:  Paved Road 0   (0=Paved, 6=Very Difficult 4WD)
2WD paved to the TH.
Directions:  Drive to Aspen and locate the start of to the Maroon Creek road at a roundabout just west of town. Measuring mileage from there, drive 3.2 miles where you'll pass a ranch - this is where the road is closed in winter. At 4.7 miles, reach the entrance station to the park. During summer, there are restrictions to general travel on the Maroon Creek road. The road is closed to cars during the day (people ride buses to reach the lake) unless you are an overnight hiker. Overnight hikers are allowed to proceed any time of the day. Continue to the end of the road at 9 miles. If you're hiking in for a high camp, there's an overnight parking area on the left. The Crater Lake trail starts near Maroon Lake.
Winter Access:  Closed at the ranch, many miles below the TH.
14er Trailheads on Google Maps
Date Status Information Posted By  Photos  Comments Likes Dislikes    
2014-08-19 The trailhead is closed to ALL cars (not just dayhikers) between 9 am and 5 pm. No exceptions for overnight hikers. If you show up between 9 and 5, you‘ll be sent back to park at Aspen Highlands and take the bus! dhstamp         
2014-07-06 Just an FYI there is a sign posted on the west side of Maroon Lake stating there was a bear incident in that area on 6/29/2014. That was all the sign said. Eagle Eye         
2014-05-28 Road still open and not closing... snow about half way to Crater lake. Would advise shoes if walking in the wee hours of the morning. If you‘re going to just walk around, may god help your soul. you will be smitten by post hole freeinthehills         
2014-05-23 Maroon Lake Rd open. We saw a bear and what I swear were two mountains lions along the road. dholm         
2014-05-14 Road will open sometime Thursday morning 5/15 (before noon). Parking area will be cleared and a couple restrooms open. Hypersnow         
2014-05-06 Road melted to west maroon. Can ride a bike that far, 18" +/- snow covering most of the road further on. Official opening May 22, but my guess is the snow will be melted out by next weekend. If that‘s the case, the gate will probably get opened earlier. Hypersnow         
2013-08-02 Note that the trail up the East Slope of South Maroon has been changed. The old trail just past the bent tree has been obliterated. A new trail junction is supposedly 1/4 mile towards Crater Lake - though we never saw it. Keep a watchful eye if you are going up soon. kullpeak         
2013-06-01 Bring something to ward off porcupines (can‘t speak for the marmots). Spent the night in the overnight parking lot and (4 times) had to chase off a porcupine (who was gnawing on my car)...and it would not scare off easily. Rocking the car, loud noises, lights, etc. didn‘t work. Had to nudge and prod the little guy with a stick several times before it would scamper off...only to return as soon as I dozed off again. Crawled up into my engine twice, also. Last year, I wrapped my car in chicken wire. That did the trick and wasn‘t hard to do, even by myself. The people next to me were up all night chasing off a persistent porcupine, while I slept like a baby. BobbyFinn and KatieFinn brought granulated coyote urine. Worked for them and they have never had any issues. IHikeLikeAGirl    1      
2013-05-04 Drove up to the gate and biked the 7 miles or so down the road to the summer TH. Road was basically clear of snow until the Maroon Bell West Portal; stashed my bike and walked the last bit. Snowshoes would have been helpful at the summer TH as there was a lot of post holing. Choosing your route carefully you can make your way down to the lake and up the ridge towards Crater Lake with a minimum amount of post holing. Turned around at the ridge as I was pretty beat. mtn114  4       
2012-11-19 Gate closed at Ranch. I believe this was the first weekend it was closed. dsunwall         
2012-07-29 The campground host said that porcupines haven‘t been seen at the overnight parking lot since mid-June. carson_h    1      
2012-04-18 Road to Maroon Lake Parking lot will be open for traffic as of Friday 4/20/12. There will be no fees until sometime in May (probably Memorial weekend). Consistent snow cover starts in the first mile after Maroon Lake. Hypersnow         
2011-12-03 Gate is closed, but road is still a dry for a couple of miles. Not passable by snowmobile, yet. AspenEx         
2011-10-29 This is a bit of old beta but newer than what is currently there. As of 10/29 the road to the TH was still open and the roads were still dry with minimal snow. No idea if it is closed yet at the typical winter closure. mountainmicah83         
2011-05-27 Road opened for the season May 27. Carl         
2011-05-15 Road is melting pretty quick. You can bike nearly 3 of the 5 miles from the gate to the TH. Also, we learned yesterday that you‘re not allowed to snowmobile up the road if there is less than 6 inches of snow coverage. The ranger turned away one group and was attempting to locate another. Plan accordingly. Carl         
2011-05-05 gated, first 1.5mi to silver bell is plowed, continuous snow after that. rough for both bikes and snowmobiles right now. gb         
2010-11-20 The snowblock was open at T-Lazy 7 Ranch, but the gate was closed above that. The road was relatively clear, however, and I was able to hike along the road without snowshoes all the way to the lake. COmedic04         
2010-05-23 Road opened for the season Saturday May 22nd. Carl         
2010-04-21 Gate still locked at T Lazy 7 but road is getting dry. Might be more of a bike ride than a snowmobile ride until it unlocks around Memorial Day tmahon         
2009-11-16 talked to the rangers and as of this morning the gate is closed!! Glen         
2009-10-30 I called the Aspen Ranger Station today. They said the road is open although there is snow in places. 4wd should be able to make it to the lake. He felt it should melt off with good weather this week end. He said the snow around the Lake and higher would be there for the season. Nelson         
2009-08-01 Road is open the entire way. Got charged $10. Maybe it was because we had 2 people in the car. Too many tourists though. TI83plus         
2009-06-03 The Road is open to Maroon Lake Trailhead. There is a Forest Service Fee Station that charges a $5 fee to gain access to the road. centrifuge         
2008-05-31 Road is open. hiked in from 6 miles out and was greeted with a mob of tourists the next day. Prairie Native         

The Bells seen from just above the lake and trailhead (Added by: BillMiddlebrook on 2006-05-16)The trailhead parking area (Added by: BillMiddlebrook on 2008-09-08)

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