Crystal Lakes Trail located near Breckenridge, CO is a haven of alpine scenery. Views of the Ten Mile Range alongside Lower Crystal Lake nestled below the mountain ridges are gorgeous. One beautiful hike through deep forests, wildflower-lined meadows, and Crystal Creek running through it all.


Crystal Lakes Trail, Hikes Breckenridge, Breck Trails, Francie's Cabin

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After parking at the parking area for Crystal Lakes Trail hike up a short distance on the 4WD road past the parking area. Head to the right where you see another 4WD road leading steeply uphill. This is the trail to Crystal Lakes.

Very steep, rocky, and a 4WD road to Lower Crystal Lake but we did not encounter any traffic on our hike. Just an amazing quiet hike through beautiful forests and meadows.


Crystal Lakes, Mohawk Lakes, Alpine Lake hikes, Breckenridge Trails,



Reaching treeline and “oh so pretty” with the start of fall colors and a panorama of high peaks ahead left us excited to keep ongoing.



It was a steep climb to get to treeline but worth it for the views in every direction! Looking. behind us, you can see endless mountain ranges.

NOTE: Francie’s Cabin a popular backcountry hut is located just minutes off this trail before you reach the lakesĀ >CLICK HERE for photos & information.



Crystal Lake, Breckenridge, CO, Hikes in Blue River, Colorado hikes


Remnants of an old cabin appear just before we reach Lower Crystal Lake which is always astonishing to think miners lived and worked at this altitude.






Yikes, others are swimming in the lake! No wonder I hear screaming, it’s cold. But a beautiful deep blue among the green tundra.

Hike to the right of the lake to find the trail that takes you to Upper Crystal Lake. It’s a single track that switchbacks up the ridgeline then across an area of * scree that appeared to be narrow and close to the edge. With 3 dogs we decided not to attempt the approx: 1.5 miles to Upper Crystal Lake.

* scree: a mass of small loose stones that form or cover a slope on a mountain.


Day Hiking Essentials, What to Bring in Your Backpack



We did hike up to the end of the trail leading to the left which ended at a field of large boulders and rocks with remnants of old mine debris scattered on the mountainside. Sounds of marmots filled the air as we approached which always leaves me smiling.

Did you know you can attach a Bear Bell to your backpack or dog collar to alert your presence in the wilderness?

Need some insight on what to do if you encounter wildlife? >CLICK HERE


Crystal Lake, Colorado hikes, Breckenridge trails, day hikes,


I love hikes that are as exciting going down as it is going up. The views! The views! However, it did start raining as we reached the forests. Typical in Colorado so be prepared. My new addition is a hiking umbrella. It is lightweight and keeps me dry which keeps me warmer!

The parking area for Crystal Lakes Trail also has several other trails options! Spruce Creek Trail (a fantastic snowshoe route) and Mohawk Lakes Trail which has it all, a stupendous waterfall, cabins, mines, and epic views.

NOTABLE: Parking is limited and fills up quickly. Carpooling is suggested. No parking on County Roads. Come early! or on weekdays if possible.


Approx: 4.6 miles out & back/Lower Lake

Approx: 8.4 miles out & back/Upper Lake

Rated: Moderate/Hard

Elevation Gain: 1,604′ 1st Lake

Elevaton Gain: 2,568′ 2nd Lake

No restrooms

Nearest Town: Breckenridge, CO

White River National Forest




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Note: Many of the links are affiliate links which means I receive a very small commission (at no added cost to you).