An easy walk yields epic mountain views


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Easily accessed from Longmont, this is a wonderful and easy stroll around a beautiful lake.

The lake is ringed by houses, and when you see the view those properties enjoy across the water and to the Rockies beyond, it's hard not to feel a little jealous! This really is a beautiful spot, and the peaks rising in the middle distance are wonderfully dramatic. The hike can be accessed from multiple points, but starting it from the south-east corner is the most popular and logical way to do it.

The trail is super clear all the way so signposting and navigation are not necessary - just jump on the trail and enjoy the ambience.

The trail is not paved, but it's devoid of obstacles and is smooth enough that you barely need to concentrate, and can focus on enjoying the views. McIntosh Lake itself is lovely, but the mountains to the west rather steal the show, and you'll likely find yourself looking at the distant surroundings more than you study your immediate surroundings.

[Longs Peak](,-105.6106229,12568.6509806,-90,0,3788.547116,satellite,summer) rather steals the show, but the lower and less famous mountains around it are almost as spectacular, and just as deserving of your gaze.

When your eyes are drawn back down from the hills, there are some bucolic views across the plains, and you'll also get a close up look at some Colorado prairie dogs (see photos). The hike finishes with an easy stroll along the south shore of the lake to Dawson Park, and back to your vehicle.