Opal Lake Trail
Beautiful hike up through aspen groves and across meadows to Opal Lake.
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Please note that this is an out-and-back hike, but the track only records one way.
Minerals give this lake a milky color, hence its name. The trail to Opal Lke is 1.2 miles long. The first part is fairly steep, climbing up through spruce and fir woodlands, and, higher up, aspen groves. There are often wildflowers and wild berries, including poisonous baneberry, and some mushrooms.
A short distance from the trail head, you’ll see a small bog on the right. After passing through a grove of tall aspen, the trail traverses several meadows, then another wooded area, before crossing the creek and continuing up to the lake. Wooded hillsides and sheer cliffs border the small lake.
Be prepared for summer thunderstorms and even hail at these high elevations. Following or during rains, crossing the creek may not be advised – better to cut short your hike than get stranded on the other side. This rocky, steep trail can be treacherous when wet. Watch your step and use hiking poles if you have them. Contact the Pagosa Ranger District, 970-264-2268 if uncertain about weather or conditions. Snow can linger here as late as July.
- Distance: 1.8
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Other side of creek
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Overlooking the bog
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Logs over a stream
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Crossing the meadow
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These berries are poisonous.
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