Hanging Lake is one of the crown jewels of Colorado's outdoors. It's also one of the spots you'd frequently find at the top of anyone's "loved to death" list.
Popularity has a cost in over-crowding, bad parking and even the occasional graffiti.
To counter that, the Forest Service started both a permit system and a shuttle from Glenwood Springs in 2019. Reservations are now open for the warm weather hiking season, which runs May 1 to Oct. 31. The permit is $12 and includes the shuttle. A bike to the trailhead option is also available.
This is the second year the system has been in place.
If you want to take on the challenge of a winter hike to Hanging Lake, those permits are still available for $10, but they don't include the shuttle from Glenwood.