This is an accessible trail that gives you a look at pristine alpine lakes that you would normally have to backpack twenty miles to get to.
Features: Birding — Lake — River/Creek — Views — Wildflowers — Wildlife
Some loose cobbles make parts challenging, but mostly this is a good flat trail.
From the parking lot, the trail first passes through a mix of open field and sparse forest as it heads uphill. Soon you are in a mix of thick spruce/pine forest skipping up along loose cobbles.
After a short while, the trail visits an assortment of lily-filled alpine lakes only for you to arrive at Sherd Lake. Enjoy a moment at the lake before continuing through a mile of powerful incline until you arrive at Rainy Lake and the Willow Lake Trail. From here, you slowly begin to make your way down.
You'll first come to the open wetland of Otter Lake. Continue down an open ridge, and in a short while, you'll find the turnoff for Old Crow Lake Trail #090
For the next couple miles, you pass through forest and a series of lakes until you come to a more open field of talus and scree. From here, enter an alpine field and turn left on South Fork Ponds Trail #095
. Continue to skirt the alpine fields until the forest thickens. Stay left to keep on South Fork Ponds Trail #095
at mile 7 and pass through a varied landscape of alpine lakes, scree fields and forest.
Soon you are back at Sherd Lake Loop Trail #046
and you can turn right to get back to the parking lot.
Moose, bighorns, black bear and other cool things inhabit this area.