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Length: 4.7-miles (one-way)
Trailhead Facilities: None
Short Trail Summary: This hike description is to Quartz Lake.
From the Trailhead, expect to climb 2,400-feet to the lake. Climb initially in aspen stands before transitioning to spruce/fir forest. The trail will switchback with occasional views to Nipple Mountain and Blackhead Peak. A final steep, rocky side hill climb through the Keyhole followed by a short, slick descent around the Quartz Ridge shoulder that soon turns to a rocky climb.
Follow the trail in the meadow which will be wet in the spring.
At an unmarked trail junction, the Quartz Lake Trail turns north into another meadow with abundant marsh marigolds and continues to gradually descend to the lake. Near the lake, cairns will mark the path on oversized slabs of granite.
Directions: From US 84, turn left onto Mill Creek Road (CR 302), a gravel road. Drive 6.3-miles to a fork; keep right onto Nipple Mountain Road/FS 665. Continue on the primary gravel road for an additional 9.7-miles to the trailhead.