Annual watershed information hike to take place at Hanging Lake Trail on Sunday

Summit to Sea trail builders work on reconstructing bridge number two on the trail to Hanging Lake.
Chelsea Self/Post Independent

Following the reopening of the Hanging Lake Trail after a large mudslide shut down the popular hiking destination on May 1, the Middle Colorado Watershed Council will take their annual watershed information hike up the trail on Sunday.

This year, the hike will include information regarding the aftermath that left the trail damaged following the 2021 debris flows, as well current usage of the trail and the U.S. Forest Service and National Forest foundation’s plans to rebuild the iconic trail.

A hike with over 1,000 feet in elevation gain — leading to the National Natural Landmark that is Hanging Lake — the trail has seen its fair share of damage in recent years due to a number of natural causes.

The improvements, which are set to begin this fall, include reengineering six of the trail’s seven bridges to better accommodate high water and debris flows.

According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, improvements taking place will also include:

  • A boardwalk at Spouting Rock to reduce erosion and other impacts by guiding visitors
  • Rock work and flood debris removal
  • Seeding and planting by hand along the trail to stabilize stream banks and reduce erosion
  • Removal of debris and reconstruction of the stream channel
  • Construction of an accessible plaza with seating and shade.

For those looking to participate in the hike, 25 spots are available for reservation. A permit to take part in the hike will be included for those who sign up.

For those who do sign up to participate, attendees will meet at the Glenwood Springs Community Center at 8 a.m. on Sunday, where a shuttle will transport participants to the popular trail. With limited reservations available, visit to reserve your spot. Reservations must be made by Friday.

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