Length: 1.2-miles (one-way to the lake) or 4-miles to Leche Creek Trail No. 576
Trailhead Facilities: None
Short Trail Summary: This hike description is to junction with the Leche Creek Trail No. 576.
Opal Lake is a popular destination hike for families and locals ready to begin the hiking season in the spring. Don’t underestimate the hike – from the trailhead the pathway ascends gently but consistently to the lake.
The trail passes through stands of aspen and a mixed forest of spruce and fir. Small meadows with abundant skunk cabbage are the first buds of the season. At 1.1-miles an unmarked junction leads to the south and small Opal Lake with its backdrop of tight fitting mountains.
Continuing on the Opal Lake Trail from the junction, the trail passes ascending meadows before closed in forest with occasional views to the north from little rock points. Early season hiking is often snow ridden and mid-season hiking offers small streams to fill water bottles.
At 3.4-miles pass to the north of an unnamed lake before descending downhill and a meadow-forest pathway to the junction with the Leche Creek Trail No. 576.
Directions: From US 160/US 84 junction, turn south onto US 84. Travel 8-miles and turn northeast onto Blanco Basin Road (CR 326), a gravel road. After 9.5-miles turn south onto FS 600 (Castle Creek Road). Continue for 3.3-miles to FR 023 (Opal Lake Road). Turn south and continue an additional .7-mile to the trailhead.