Hike to Big Meadows and Granite Falls

Grand Lake, Colorado

5.0/5
based on 4 reviews

Details

Distance

10.3 miles

Route Type

Out-and-Back

Description

Added by Ryan Mckinney

Amazing Wildlife Viewing Opportunities. Great Trout Fishing. Granite Falls (who doesn't love waterfalls?!). 10.3 Mile Out-and-Back Hike. Duration: A few hours.

The Green Mountain Trail is part of the Continental Divide National Scenic Trail (CDT) which is a foot path from Mexico to Canada. Big Meadows is a great place to view elk, moose, and deer. Other animals you can see in the area are abert squirrels, river otters, weasels, and black bear.

Big Meadows is 1.8 miles from the parking lot. The first half mile is a steady and moderate incline. The trail levels out with a few short steep sections. Granite falls is just over 3 miles from big meadows. The trail is fairly flat then has a moderate incline about a half mile before the falls. This is a well marked trail which makes it easy to navigate. There are great opportunities for fly fishing in the Tonahutu Creek(I saw 20+ brook trout ranging from 6-12").

If you are looking for a longer hike, you can continue past the falls to Haynach Lakes or Flat Top Mountain which is 11.3 miles one way.

If you are looking for backpacking there are 5 back country campsites before you reach Granite Falls(Green Mountain, Big Meadows, Sunset, Sunrise, and Lower Granite Falls). For information on Rocky Mountain National Park's backcountry camping permits visit: NPS.gov

On this hike you will pass the Big Meadows burn area where 653 acres burned after lighting sparked a wildfire in 2013.

The entrance fee for Rocky Mountain National Park is $20 (I recommend purchasing an annual pass for $80, which is an interagency pass that works more than 2,000 federal recreation sites).

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Features

Camping
Fishing
Photography
Snowshoeing
Backpacking
Hiking
Easy Parking
Family Friendly
Forest
River
Scenic
Waterfall
Wildflowers
Wildlife

Reviews

Spent so much of my time in Big Meadows in the 2015 season, post burn. Love the quiet, love the campsites right before Granite Falls

This is a good hike. I was able to see some moose in the Big Meadows, and I had lunch up at Granite Falls (this is a must if you're able to make there). Not to strenuous given the milage, so I had a blast!

Very few people hike on this side of the park. Always very peaceful, you can often see moose up in Big Meadows

Did the 1.8 to the and 1.8 back, due to the fact I only got on around 7 pm and the sun sets at 8! Easy trail, lots of nice bridges and absolutely gorgeous woods. There's plenty of meadows on the way up! But the most striking is obviously at the top! A little steep at first but evens out quickly. Highly suggested

Leave No Trace

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures and follow local regulations. Please explore responsibly!

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