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Maroon Lake Trailhead

Trailhead conditions, directions, roads, parking, camping, etc. Trailhead Info/Status
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Maroon Lake Trailhead

Postby Dan_Suitor » Wed Sep 18, 2013 11:15 am

A buddy and I plan to do Pyramid Peak this Saturday but I’m not sure if we can get up to Maroon Lake Trailhead in time on Friday to hike to Crater Lake and set up camp before it gets dark. Is there anywhere near the trailhead that has camping, or do they allow for car camping? I searched the forum but could not find anything.

Also, I noticed a lot of others intend to climb in the same area as they too were washed out last weekend. If anybody is interested in a post climb happy hour, let me know and we can meet somewhere in Aspen.

Thanks
Dan

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Re: Maroon Lake Trailhead

Postby mtgirl » Wed Sep 18, 2013 11:28 am

You can sleep in your vehicle in the overnight lot just below the day lot at the trailhead. I always found that easier than packing into Crater Lake anyway. If you packed into Crater Lake, you'd have to backtrack down the trail a bit to climb Pyramid. Good luck !
"Life is not measured by the breaths you take, but by the moments that take your breath away."

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Re: Maroon Lake Trailhead

Postby Dan_Suitor » Wed Sep 18, 2013 12:29 pm

MtnGirl,
Thanks for the info. Good to know about the backtracking. Do you know if a tent can be set up near that lot as well?
Dan

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Re: Maroon Lake Trailhead

Postby gdthomas » Wed Sep 18, 2013 12:51 pm

You can drive to the Maroon Lake parking lot anytime after 4:45pm. The hike to Crater Lake shouldn't take more than a half hour or so. That would put you at Crater Lake no later than 5:45, plenty of time to set up camp.

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Re: Maroon Lake Trailhead

Postby mtgirl » Wed Sep 18, 2013 2:10 pm

Dan_Suitor wrote:MtnGirl,
Thanks for the info. Good to know about the backtracking. Do you know if a tent can be set up near that lot as well?
Dan


I think setting up a tent in the overnight lots is "frowned up" by the rangers up there. I have heard of people waiting until the rangers make their last rounds thru the parking lot in the evening, then setting up a small tent in front of their vehicle. I saw no tents the last time I slept there in my vehicle (July).
"Life is not measured by the breaths you take, but by the moments that take your breath away."

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Re: Maroon Lake Trailhead

Postby peter303 » Wed Sep 18, 2013 2:19 pm

gdthomas wrote:You can drive to the Maroon Lake parking lot anytime after 4:45pm. The hike to Crater Lake shouldn't take more than a half hour or so. That would put you at Crater Lake no later than 5:45, plenty of time to set up camp.

Crater Lake hike is two miles and 600 feet with some gravelly parts. Half hour is optimistic.

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Re: Maroon Lake Trailhead

Postby Dan_Suitor » Wed Sep 18, 2013 2:32 pm

gdthomas wrote:You can drive to the Maroon Lake parking lot anytime after 4:45pm. The hike to Crater Lake shouldn't take more than a half hour or so. That would put you at Crater Lake no later than 5:45, plenty of time to set up camp.

GDThomas,
Thanks for the info, but unfortunately I won't be leaving Conifer until around 4 pm, so eta to parking will be 8 pm. Sunset is around 7, and I'd rather not hike and setup camp in the dark.

mtgirl wrote:I think setting up a tent in the overnight lots is "frowned up" by the rangers up there. I have heard of people waiting until the rangers make their last rounds thru the parking lot in the evening, then setting up a small tent in front of their vehicle. I saw no tents the last time I slept there in my vehicle (July).

MtnGirl,
Thanks. This might fall under the “Better to beg for forgiveness than ask for permission” category. It's good to know that if worse comes to worse, my buddy and I will just have to get comfortable in his car.

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Re: Maroon Lake Trailhead

Postby mtgirl » Wed Sep 18, 2013 2:45 pm

Dan_Suitor wrote: if worse comes to worse, my buddy and I will just have to get comfortable in his car.


No spooning. That is also frowned upon. =;
"Life is not measured by the breaths you take, but by the moments that take your breath away."

Re: Maroon Lake Trailhead

Postby BobbyFinn » Wed Sep 18, 2013 2:51 pm

There is at least one campground on the road to the TH - it's after the pay station. That could work for you if you want to set up a tent and avoid any ranger entanglements. It's not a far drive from there to the TH.
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Re: Maroon Lake Trailhead

Postby Dan_Suitor » Wed Sep 18, 2013 4:17 pm

BobbyFinn wrote:There is at least one campground on the road to the TH - it's after the pay station. That could work for you if you want to set up a tent and avoid any ranger entanglements. It's not a far drive from there to the TH.

BobbyFinn,
That sounds like it will meet my needs perfectly.
Thanks

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Re: Maroon Lake Trailhead

Postby gdthomas » Wed Sep 18, 2013 8:02 pm

peter303 wrote:
gdthomas wrote:You can drive to the Maroon Lake parking lot anytime after 4:45pm. The hike to Crater Lake shouldn't take more than a half hour or so. That would put you at Crater Lake no later than 5:45, plenty of time to set up camp.

Crater Lake hike is two miles and 600 feet with some gravelly parts. Half hour is optimistic.


Hence the phrase, "a half hour or so" (Emphasis added). I also assumed no lollygagging given their desire to beat nightfall.

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