Ever wonder what you might encounter out on the trail? Well, if the trail you're thinking of hiking lies within Rocky Mountain National Park, the webmeisters there have a page for you.
If you're thinking of heading to the park for a day, or longer, log onto this site before you leave home or your hotel/motel, etc., for the latest on trail conditions.
Understandably, you won't get an update on every single trail in the park, but there's a pretty good cross-section when you keep in mind that Rocky Mountain offers more than 350 miles of trails.
For an example of what you'll find, here's a rundown they provided earlier this week:
These Trail Conditions reports are the viewpoints of the submitters, whether park staff, volunteers, or visitors. Conditions can change rapidly in the mountains. Use these reports only as guidelines. Be prepared for varying weather and trail conditions.
Trail: Around Bear Lake and to Nymph Lake
To Nymph about 75% of trail is covered with ice. Around Bear Lake: south side of lake trail is icy, north side of Loop is clear. Snowpack up to 3 inches on trail. Traction devices and hiking poles recommended.
Trail: Flattop Mountain
Slippery hard-paced snow/ice below 10,000 feet up to 9 inches. Above 10,000 feet variable snow from hard pack up to 9 feet of deep powder. Boots are okay but expect post-holing.
Trail: Bear Lake to Emerald Lake
Bear to Nymph - 0-1" snow over packed ice. Nymph to Dream - drifts to 8" with large bare spots of ice. Dream to Emerald - wind blowing snow with drifts up to 2'. Boots OK to Dream with either snow shoes or post-holing beyond. Be sure to look for landmarks as wind will obscure your footprints and cannot find trail.
Trail: Glacier Gorge-Mills/Loch
First 0.5 mile was sheet of ice. Turned back. Poles and traction recommended.
Trail: Deer Mountain
Hiked up mountain. Trail generally clear but ran into packed or slushy snow on upper climbs. Boots OK. Poles helped.
Trail: Glacier Gorge to Lake of Glass
Trail icy to Loch and above. Need gaiters poles and traction devices. Two feet of snow above the Loch. Could use snowshoes.
Trail: Wild Basin to Calypso Cascades
Clear to Copeland falls, after bridge trail covered with ice. Needed traction devices.
Trail: Bierstadt Lake
The Bierstadt Lake trail up Bierstadt Moraine had some bare spots and some icy spots. Some areas had up to 4-5" of snow. Stabilizers and hiking poles recommended.