On Sunday Stella and I ventured out to Mosquito Lake in the Flat Tops Wilderness. It seemed like the perfect Sunday morning day-hike. It's around a 2.25 mile hike (one-way) to the lake, but parking for the trailhead shares the same as several other popular trails (including Devil's Causeway and Flat Top Mountain), so it can seem busier at the start than it actually will be. I had anticipated the lake to be somewhat busy (we got to the trailhead around 9:30), but I was surprised with how quiet it was!
The hike shares the same trail as #1119 (Devil's Causeway) for the first 0.8 miles along the coast of Stillwater Reservoir, so that is where we met the majority of the traffic (only 2 other sets of hikers). Once we split off to trail #1120 Bear River (that leads to Mosquito Lake), it was quaint and quite. The hike is an extremely gentle climb, but there are 3 water crossings that you will need to do. There are either rocks or logs to help guide you across (or get your feet wet, which is what I normally do), but otherwise it's perfect for anyone. I think this would also be a really great hike for those family members that you have visiting from out of town because it is relatively short and scenic.
We got to the lake in a little under an hour (and that included stopping at all three of the water crossings for Stella to get a drink) and really taking our time. I think this would also be a great trail to run on as well! We were the ONLY ONES at the lake and I really wished that we could have stayed there all day. Mosquito Lake is on the smaller-side, but nonetheless stunning with the surrounding mountain peaks.
There is also plenty of spots along the trail and within a 1/4 mile of the lake to pitch a tent to backpack if you want to spend the night there. Once Stella and I had a snack (Honey Stinger Chews and a Luna Bar), we reluctantly headed back to the car. Since it is a gentle hike, it took us the same amount of time to hike out as it did to hike in.
I really loved this hike and thought that it was the perfect *gentle* Sunday morning hike that I was looking for. I HIGHLY recommend it! Plus, the wildflowers were in full bloom while we were out there which made it even better :) There has yet to be a hike in the Flat Tops that I haven't loved.
Ever visited the Flat Tops Wilderness?
Favorite distance for a day hike? --> I like to keep it somewhere between 4-6 miles total.