3. During the winter and spring, the area is a popular cross-country and backcountry skiing destination. Partners at Brainard Lake. About an hour’s drive from Boulder, the namesake lake sits at 10,000 ft. and is just one of many features that make this a great place for a snowy outing. Mitchell Lake - 1.8 Miles Round-Trip Mitchell Lake (10,735') is located .9 miles from Mitchell Lake Trailhead in the Brainard Lake Recreation Area. Dogs are also able to use this trail. It occupies a broad, damp flat on Mt Audubon's south flank. To the left, you'll see a well-marked trail. A view of Mt. In the Brainard Lake Recreational Area in Colorado. Just north of Ward turn west on Forest Service Road 102 (Brainard Lake Road) and drive 2.5 miles to the winter closure and parking lot. The Brainard Lake recreation area is composed of a number of trailheads and a campground in high-elevation spruce-fir forest and is a good place to look for Gray Jays, American Three-toed Woodpeckers, and Dusky Grouse. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash. In the winter months, the Brainard Lake road is closed near the highway, and one must walk (or better yet, […] The trail is primarily used for hiking and snowshoeing. After our break, it was time to head back down to the trailhead parking and into the mountain town of Nederland for some pizza and beer at the Crosscut Pizzeria and Taphouse. Brainard Lake is located in Ward, Colorado and part of the Arapaho & Roosevelt National Forests. Hike beyond Blue Lake to Mitchell Lake. It’s a beautiful area to snowshoe. Brainard Lake Loop Trail is a 5.1 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Nederland, Colorado that features a lake and is good for all skill levels. Winter in the high country. The Forest Service sent their own staff person to round out our group. Long Lake (10) Nederland, CO. The busiest area is Brainard Lake, which hosts several trailheads and a campground. Resorts that stay open in the winter offer a unique lakes area experience with bonfires by a frozen lake or s'mores over the fireplace. Wanting to contribute, I brought a box of Kind bars and my own good will. Brainard Lake is home to a plethora of trails with certain ones dedicated to snowshoeing or cross country skiing. Brainard Lake recreation area is one of Colorado’s best natural winter playgrounds. Major Winter Storm Likely for the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic on Wednesday A potent system is passing through the Intermountain West today and will eject out into the south-central Plains for Tuesday. ... Rick came with a stack of winter maps, cookies and a smile. Many snowshoers and nordic skiers were milling about, preparing to embark on the day’s trek. There’s also Red Rock Lake located 1.5 miles east of Brainard Lake, part of the same recreation area. If you're late, catch up. We'll meet at the warming hit at the winter parking lot at 8:45am. Best known as a summer hot spot for fishing, boating, golfing and relaxing by the lake, the Brainerd Lakes area has a lot to offer winter visitors, too. Brainard Lake Rec. Primary winter… Basically, it is a winter playground and the gateway to the Indian Peaks Wilderness. Located two miles east of Brainard Lake, the Brainard Gateway Trailhead area features a seasonal gate, large parking area, warming hut, and bathrooms. Mild trail conditions are well-suited for families, winter recreation and those with limited time or … Add Your Recommended Routes. Sourdough Trail to Brainard Lake Recreation Area - 11.6 Miles Round-Trip The Sourdough Trail stretches nearly 13 miles (south-north) from Rainbow Lakes Road to Camp Dick in the Roosevelt National Forest. Starting at the Bear Lake trailhead, grab a map and follow signs to Nymph Lake, ... Brainard Lake Snowshoe Trail. Winter Access When the gate is closed (mid-October through Memorial Day, dates vary tremendously and seemingly at random), you can access Brainard Lake for free, but you'll have to walk to get there. Gems in Brainard Lake Recreation Area - 1. From the Brainard Lake winter TH, head to the gate station. Hike statistics: The CMC South ski trail to the CMC cabin gains 315 feet in 3.2 miles one way. These events and activities are the reason that the Brainerd Lakes Area is a world class Minnesota vacation destination even during the cold of winter. Drive west on the winding Brainard Lake Road (often icy) for 2.5 miles to winter closure. We arrived at the Brainard Lake winter parking area around 9:30 a.m., with the parking lot about half full. Sure, there’s snowmobiling and ice fishing, but there are lots of other fun things to see and do when the lakes are frozen over. Virtual Tour of Brainard Lake Snowshoe Trail. While jaw-dropping scenery is available from the comfort of your car, off-trail adventures in this area are even better. Brainard Lake Road. Recommended Routes in Brainard Lake Recreation Area - 6 Hiking Project is built by hikers like you. Fishing is also found in many of the lakes and streams within the wilderness. Brainard Lake is also 50 minutes from Boulder and an hour and a half from Denver. Join us for a snowshoe on the trails in the Brainard Lake area to the CMC hut for hot chocolate. You can't go wrong here: this whole area is beautiful, at any time of year! Book online now! We visited in early May so there was still a lot of snow on the roads and trails. Nearby towns include Nederland and Ward. Brainard Lake Recreation Area. The view from Brainard Lake is a true Colorado icon and one of the highlights of Boulder County. Travel on the Peak-to-Peak Highway through the town of Ward and look for the sign to Brainard Lake. The Brainerd Lakes Area is also home to events like the largest Ice fishing contest in the world, The Winter Jubilee, Winter Fest, Frozen Fore Winter Weekend, Cuyuna Whiteout, and more. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Where is brainard lake recreation area? Hiking Project is built by hikers like you. The Brainard Lake Road is snow packed from the entrance station to the Pawnee Campground. Estes Park to Brainard Lake From Estes Park, take Highway 7 to Highway 72 and then turn onto Brainard Lake Road. Fall at a Brainerd resort is a beautiful experience with Fall Colors Tours across town. Winter access is free, but expect a bit of a hike to the trailheads, due to the location of the winter parking area. 12-08-2020: Brainard Lake Recreation Area: 10,525: Long Lake Lake Isabelle Snowshoe Trail (Winter Only) Snow Packed in Places: The Snowshoe and the Lake Isabelle trails is mostly snow packed with icy spots, a traction device is advised. There is a small parking area at the winter closure gate (technically known as the Red Rocks Lake Trailhead) with room for perhaps a dozen cars. Brainard Lake via Waldrop and Ski Trail is a 6.3 mile heavily trafficked loop trail located near Ward, Colorado that features a lake and is rated as moderate. The Mitchell Lake Trail – is 2.4 miles long but ends above the tree line in a true alpine setting at Mitchell Lake. Go through the traffic circle and head north on 72. There is a warming hut and bathrooms at the winter parking area which is convenient. Map Key Favorites Check-Ins. Access to winter parking is located off of Highway 72, just east of the town of Ward. Audubon. Follow the blue and white snowshoe blazes on the trees. In the winter, snowshoeing and cross country skiing are popular. The famous Gull Lake Lighted Trail will guide you on your night excursions. This is the nicest weather I’ve had at Brainard Lake in the winter! Because we had been down the Brainard Snowshoe Trail before, and because our trip would be slightly shorter if we took Brainard Lake Road, we decided to snowshoe along the latter.Having never been on such a long snowshoe trip before, and knowing that you burn a lot of calories snowshoeing (more than 1000 calories per hour), we wanted to keep our trek on the shorter … Brainard Lake Recreation Area: Hiking winter - See 60 traveler reviews, 143 candid photos, and great deals for Ward, CO, at Tripadvisor. I try to do a snowshoe hike in the Brainard Lake area once a year. Hessie Trailhead This is a winter-use trail only, open November 15 - April 30. The Brainard Gateway Trailhead is the entry point to Brainard Lake Recreation Area and Brainard Lake Trails system. If you're interested in old sleds, be sure to plan a January weekend in the lakes area watching all the action at the Annual Antique Snowmobile Rendezvous in Pequot Lakes. Area Winter Use Map (USFS) Directions: From Boulder, follow 119 through Boulder Canyon west to Nederland. This system will then progress into the East on Wednesday and a surface low is expected to develop and rapidly intensify along the Mid-Atlantic coastline. Hiking/Horseback Riding – Five trails lead out in the high altitude wilderness from the area. Peaks from left to right: Pawnee Peak, Mount Toll, Paiute Peak, Mt. Pets must be leashed. It competes with Bear Lake and Trail Ridge Road in RMNP as the most accessible area of natural beauty in the Front Range. From the Brainard Lake winter TH, head to the gate station. Directions from Forest Service aren't great: From Colorado Highway 72 at Ward, turn west onto the Brainard Lake Road. RECOMMENDED ROUTE Difficult. From mid-Oct till late spring - sometimes into June, depending on snow - the road is gated off near Red Rock Lake, a couple miles before Brainard. The Brainard Lake trailhead is located at the entrance of the Brainard Lake Winter Lot and to the west of the warming hut. Four season lodging is the best in the Brainerd Lakes Area. Audubon. Please see our Google map for driving directions. During the winter … Add Your Gems. Brainard Lake is open year round. The lakes area snowmobile clubs are responsible for the grooming of trails. Directions: turn left (i.e., west) off of CO-72 onto Brainard Lake road and drive 5-6 miles to the trailhead. Brainard Lake Recreational Area has basic amenities available during the winter, including water and bathrooms. Begin the trail to Brainard Lake by starting on the North Sourdough/ Waldrop Trail, also referred to as the CMC (Colorado Mountain Club) North USFS Trail 814.1. Not being a skier or snowboarder (yet), for my first winter in Colorado, I decided to take up snowshoeing. March 2, 2020. The drive takes about 50 minutes. Hike beyond and above Long Lake to Isabelle Lake & small glacier. 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