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Hanging Lake Trail to reopen June 25; reservations open next Monday

Trail has been closed since last summer after massive debris flow
Posted at 2:30 PM, May 18, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-18 16:34:00-04

DENVER – Hanging Lake Trail will reopen on June 25 as a primitive trail, and reservations will open next Monday, after being closed since late June 2021 after it was severely damage in a debris flow event over the 2020 Grizzly Creek Fire burn scar.

The U.S. Forest Service and Visit Glenwood Springs announced the opening dates on Wednesday about a month after they said they were planning on building a primitive trail to the lake that would open sometime this summer.

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Hanging Lake as seen from a drone. Photograph taken on Aug. 25, 2021.

“We are thrilled that the temporary trail work is going well and that guests will soon be able to schedule their summer hike reservations. Hanging Lake Trail is a bucket list hike for recreators both domestic and international, and we welcome responsible use of this beloved attraction,” said Lisa Langer, the director of tourism for Visit Glenwood Springs.

Reservations for the hike to Hanging Lake, one of the most popular in Colorado, will open at 10 a.m. on Monday, May 23. People will be able to click here to make reservations.

The initial temporary trail will be in place until officials can design and build a permanent trail, which the city and forest expecting about $3 million in grant money from Great Outdoors Colorado and funding from the city and other foundations. That design stage is expected to get underway this summer, according to a National Forest Foundation spokesperson.

A crew member for the contractor working on the primitive Hanging Lake Trail, Summit to Sea Trails, works on a section of the trail.

The National Forest Foundation is continuing to collect donations to support fixing the Hanging Lake Trail.

“Our work on a longer term, more sustainable trail continues,” said Eagle-Holy Cross District Ranger Leanne Veldhuis.

PHOTOS: Hanging Lake recovering after damage from mudslides

A debris slide from 2021 destroyed much of the Hanging Lake trail, plus multiple bridges, and temporarily turned the crystal clear water a murky brown. It also closed Interstate 70 through Glenwood Canyon for weeks.


Officials said Wednesday the area will still be prone to flooding and debris flow after the 2020 wildfire, and could close on short notice depending on weather conditions.

“We look forward to welcoming back visitors who can’t wait to hike up the temporary trail to see this awe-inspiring natural landmark,” said Glenwood Springs Mayor Jonathan Godes in a statement.