Snowshoeing Lost Lake 2005

First you go past Eldora Ski Area...

Looking for more current trail conditions? Try the Winter Trail Conditions - Lost Lake area!

December 26, 2005

Jane and I both had the day after Christmas off so we decided to get out of the house (avoiding the post-Christmas sales of course) and go play in the snow. I knew we didn't want to drive up I-70 and deal with all of that traffic, so Lost Lake seemed just right. It wasn't as far from the house as Brainard Lake but it was right next to the Eldora Ski Area, which left me hoping there would be some decent snow. The trail conditions were mostly good, once you got past the Hessie Trailhead sign. Prior to that we walked in just wearing our boots, it wasn't until the Hessie Townsite that we put on our shoes. Not far after though I was glad we did since the trail became much steeper and softer.

How to get to the Lost Lake Snowshoeing Trailhead

We came in a back way, up Coal Creek Canyon and north along State Highway 72 until the turn-off. You might want to come up Boulder Canyon and go south on Highway 72. Either way get to Highway 72 just south of Nederland, keep an eye out for the "Eldora Ski Area" sign (the street is actually called "Eldora Road"). Take Eldora Road to the end, being careful to stay right at the fork to the ski area. You will drive through the small town of Eldora and the road will end where the plows stop scraping snow. There isn't much of a parking area, so please be considerate of the homeowners at the end of the road.

Lost Lake Snoeshowing Trail

The trail out of the parking lot is easy to follow, just start hiking along the road over the hump of snow the plows have left. At the fork with Fourth of July Road stay left (don't start climbing yet). You will eventually pass the Hessie Townsite not far past the fork in the road, then shortly after you will see the Hessie Trailhead sign. The trail to Lost Lake follows the Hessie trail, then eventually forks off (you will see a sign for Jasper Lake and Devil's Thumb Lake at a footbridge that is likely to be covered with snow.) Cross the footbridge then start climbing. There will be one more fork at the top of the hill that is not very well marked, stay left and you will eventually pop out onto Lost Lake. Total distance, round trip from the car, was 5.4 miles according to my GPS unit. The total hike took us a couple hours, and according to the Topo! Colorado software the total elevation gain was 1018 feet. Most of the elevation gain will come after the Hessie trailhead, so be prepared for a few steep climbs.

Lost Lake Snowshoeing GPS Coordinates

If anyone is interested in uploading some coordinates to their GPS so you have some idea where you are headed, here are three relevant coordinates:

  1. Parking Area: 39°57.060'N, 105°34.943'W
  2. Fork in the Trail (Footbridge): 39°57.330'N, 105°36.775'W
  3. Lost Lake: 39°57.041'N, 105°37.027'W

Snow Conditions at Lost Lake as of Dec 26, 2005

The snow was great once we got past the Hessie trailhead sign. It was definitely packed enough to just walk in normal shoes prior to that, with one stretch by the Hessie town site being just a thin ribbon of snow following a dry road. Snowshoes were not required until after the Hessie trailhead sign and then they were strongly recommended.


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