Colorado Guy Snow Pictures
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Hartenstein Lake (alt. 11,451 feet)

(Near Cottonwood Pass and Buena Vista, CO in the Collegiate Peaks Wilderness - June 18, 2008)

Hartenstein Lake, CO Hartenstein Lake! Off the top of my head, this is a very good hike if you are seeking: 1) A scenic high country hike that will prepare you for more rigorous hikes (14ers and trails above timberline), or 2) a high altitude lake for fishing.

The most common route to Hartenstein Lake is via the Denny Creek Trail. At the Denny Creek Trailhead on Chaffee County Road 306 ("Cottonwood Pass Road"), it is a 2 to 2.5 mile hike uphill to the lake. There are two forks in the trail with signage - one fork leads to Mt. Yale, the other to Browns Pass. Just follow the signs!

Now I must admit I have one very perplexing issue with Hartenstein Lake. Each time I have been near the lake there has been either too much snow or the weather has been terribly cloudy, making for poor photography. On this day (June 18, 2008), I did not even make it to the lake, because of all the snow that remained at the fork for Browns Pass and the lake. The other time I actually visited the lake (June 5, 2007 - Hartenstein Lake), the dreary skies made for really terrible picture taking.

Anyway, for what it's worth, below are my photos of Hartenstein Lake from various vantage points and some photos along the Denny Creek Trail today. This page will be my reason to return at some point this summer and pack this page with photos of the lake! :)

Take Care,

Hartenstein Lake, CO
Photo Gallery - Hartenstein Lake

The view of Hartenstein Lake as I stood near the summit of Turner Peak. Mt. Yale is the tallest peak to the right.

Hartenstein Lake Standing on the summit of Mt. Yale, Hartenstein Lake can be seen in the gulch on the right. See it? :)
Hartenstein Lake, Colorado Now this photo was taken by my friends Josh and Jason, who snowshoed to the lake on April 22, 2007. Look at all the snow! And notice the lake has not even come close to thawing out.

You can read their interesting trip report here.

Hartenstein Lake My one photo of Hartenstein Lake as I stood near the lake on my cloudy morning hike in 2007.

Denny Creek Trail
Pictures of My Hike on the Denny Creek Trail

June 18, 2008 - A pretty view of the Denny Creek Trail at the beginning.

Denny Creek, CO Denny Creek was running really hard! You'll need to walk across the creek using these three logs. Honestly, it was an anxiety-inducing experience going over them. On the way back, I just took my shoes and socks off and walked across the creek. It was silly and exhilirating! :)
Collegiate Peaks Wilderness
Mt. Princeton, CO
Two views of Mt. Princeton as I ascended the trail.
Hartenstein Lake Hike There was still a lot of snow up there and a large portion of the trail was muddy. The adjacent photo was a good example, although one can not quite grasp the muddiness in the photo.
Hartenstein Lake Sign
At the fork for Hartenstein Lake and Browns Pass, I stopped. There was way too much snow just a few yards into the trail to Hartenstein Lake. It did seem like some hikers were finding ways to pass through, including another creek with weak logs across, but I just was not in the mood to deal with it. Oh well, I'll chalk it up to laziness!

Here are some of my local hikes in this area:

  • Lost Lake
  • Turner Peak
  • Mt. Yale (2007)
  • Mt. Yale (2006)
  • Ptarmigan Lake
  • Unnamed 12,792' (2 miles south of Cottonwood Pass)

    A few more around Buena Vista, CO:

  • Midland Hill
  • Davis Meadow Trail
  • Sugarloaf Mountain
  • Bald Mountain
  • Snow Oh and if you don't believe me about the snow ... adjacent is what the Browns Pass Trail looked like last year on June 5, 2007. It did not look that much different this time. Again, see my page from last year: Hartenstein Lake.