Hanging Lake Hiking Reservations Open Feb. 1

You might not be thinking of warm weather hiking while there’s still snow on the ground but planning now will ensure you get your desired time and day for hiking Hanging Lake later; one of Colorado’s most beloved and popular trails.

girl hiking

(c) @kgarbowskya shared with #VisitGlenwood

Who’s prepared to hit the trail?

Ready or not, now’s the time to start planning your summer hike to Hanging Lake in Glenwood Canyon. This popular trail near Glenwood Springs will be accepting reservations for hiking permits beginning Saturday, Feb. 1. Valid for the upcoming 2020 warm weather hiking season from May 1 through Oct. 31, permits cost $12 and include shuttle bus transportation from the Hanging Lake Welcome Center to the trailhead and back. If biking is more your style, you may also reserve a permit to bike to the trailhead at a cost of $10. That option will also be available as of Feb. 1, 2020.

Permits are still required to hike the trail from now until April 30. However, the off-season Hanging Lake permit differs in that there is no shuttle service and permits cost $10 and allows vehicle parking at the trailhead. Whenever you choose to go, making reservations to hike Hanging Lake is easy to do online.

(c) @lcammarataphoto shared with #VisitGlenwood

Save the Date Now

With the recent snowfalls in Glenwood Springs, schussing down the slopes at Sunlight Mountain Resort or soaking in the town’s hot springs may be top-of-mind right now, but save a few minutes to plan your day hike to one of Colorado’s most spectacular places. Minutes is all it takes to make reservations, and you’ll be glad you did when you’re admiring the postcard-perfect view of the Hanging Lake falls on a summer day in June.

While you can always make a spontaneous reservation, for busy holiday or mid-summer weekends and larger groups we recommend reserving ahead.

Taking a few minutes today to plan will ensure that you and your family and friends have the best possible experience. Reservations for a hiking time are available seven days a week. Times vary depending on the day and time of year. The shuttle bus, operated by H2O Ventures, generally departs the Hanging Lake Welcome Center every 45 minutes. Forgot something? Not to worry. The Welcome Center stocks everything you need for a well-prepared hike, including reusable water bottles you can fill before you go. You can even rent hiking poles and a backpack if needed. For more details about the trail, conditions and what to expect, check out this helpful Hanging Lake FAQ or download a Hanging Lake brochure.

A “Reservations Only” Trail

Summer 2019 was the first year that a reservations system for Hanging Lake was was implemented. With nearly 1,300 visitors a day, the trail had become so popular that it was in danger of being ruined by overcrowding, trail erosion and threats to the delicate eco-system of the lake. To remedy the situation the U.S. Forest Service teamed up with the City of Glenwood Springs to whittle down the number of visitors to a more reasonable 615 per day. The result has been a huge success.

“Instead of queuing up for a conga line of hikers, visitors can now enjoy the trail and the scenery at their own pace and the habitat has a chance to recover and thrive,” Lisa Langer, Director of Tourism Promotion for Visit Glenwood Springs, said. “It’s a win-win for hikers and the environment.”

(c) @belenleon9 shared with #VisitGlenwood

There’s no time like the present to make reservations for your Hanging Lake hiking permit!

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Cover Photo by @cmooreshots–  Thank you for sharing with #VisitGlenwood