The Maroon Bells Crater Lake Trail is a moderate trail up to Crater Lake and the West Maroon Trail.
Maroon Bells Crater Lake Trail: Getting there
From the roundabout west of Aspen, take Maroon Creek Road. Check the sign just past the roundabout for road closure status. During busy times & the summer, cars are only permitted past the guard gate to the Maroon Lake parking lot before 9am or after 5pm.
On these days, park at Aspen Highlands and take the Maroon Bells bus (runs approx. every 20 minutes). If driving, a $10 fee applies for a 5 day pass.
Maroon Bells Crater Lake Trail: The hike
From the parking lot, follow the trail to the lake. The trail continues to the right of the lake. At the “Scenic Loop Trail or Crater Lake” marker, keep right.
The first part of the hike is a steady climb up switchbacks through the trees.
As the top of the switchbacks, you will pass through a rock field. Crater Lake is just beyond the rock field.
The Crater Lake trail is an approximate 3 mile roundtrip from Maroon Lake.
If you are feeling up for some more hiking, go past the lake to the West Maroon Trail.
West Maroon Trail is a 10.2 mile hike to Crested Butte over West Maroon Pass. Adding on an additional mile or so from Crater Lake before turning back is a beautiful additional hike in mostly solitude.