Added by Will McKay
Beautiful mountain views, howling winds, and a wonderful lake. What more could you ask for?
Kite Lake is a beautiful little lake that is surrounded plenty of fourteeners. Just outside of Alma, Colorado, Kite lake can be accessed from Buckskin Street. Buckskin is a simple left turn after the only bar in Alma, or a right turn before the only bar in Alma... Do note, this road is not drivable during the winter months, the road closes when the plows can no longer plow!
Also be aware, the road is not in the best shape. It's best to take a car with some high clearance and possibly 4x4 capabilities if rain is in the forecast. I will say, I did see one ballsy man drive a civic up the road. Only bottomed out four times...
Now to the good stuff! I highly suggest going up to camp and hike during the fall, the aspens are peaking in late September and the colors are absolutely stunning. Also, there are a lot less people crowding the lake and trails.
The parking fee is about $3 as of September 2016 and the camping fee is $12. Please do pay these fees as they fund the protection of our beautiful parks and wild spaces!
I prefer walking down to one of the campsites along the shore of the lake, preferably on the west side. The east is highly exposed and can suffer through some serious winds, while the west is a little more sheltered.
There are plenty of hiking trails that can be accessed from the Kite Lake Trailhead as well. I quite enjoy the DeCaLiBron loop which is an 8.5 mile hike. Not only do you get to brag that you went hiking but you also get to brag that you summited four fourteeners in one day. Yep, you heard that right. The loop includes a summit of Mt. Democrat, Mt. Cameron, Mt. Lincoln, and Mt. Bross.
From the campsites, there are plenty of established fire pits; however this does not mean that fires can be care free. Please take the time to put them out with water and control the area around you.
After you have the fire started and have finished hiking, sit back and relax. Enjoy the sunset, the warmth of the pit, and possibly the few beers that built up way too much pressure on the rough drive up.
And be prepared for a windy night camping and a beautiful sunrise.
- Car with clearance
- Warm Sleeping Pad
- Warm Sleeping Bag
- Camp Food
- Hiking Boots
- Down Jacket
- A Few Brews
Please respect the places you find on The Outbound.
Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures. Be aware of local regulations and don't damage these amazing places for the sake of a photograph. Learn More
ReviewsLeave a Review
Have you done this adventure? Have something to add? You could be the first to leave a review!
More Adventures Nearby
Hike Mt. Elbert via Black Cloud Trail
Colorado / Black Cloud Trailhead
Directions: Heading south from Leadville from U.S. 24: West on CO 82 for 10.5 miles to a hidden right turn that leads to a trail head. If you make it to the Mt.
Backpack to Dragon's Back via Horsethief Trail
Colorado / Horsethief Trailhead
The Uncompahgre Wilderness stretches out through the mountains and forests of southwestern Colorado, with worn trails lingering beside abandoned 19th-century mines and crossing old alpine sheep pastu.