This series of connected roads, best traveled on a mountain bike, follows the edge of Deep Lake to Heart Lake and then back to Deep Lake. The elevation is gained in the first 2.5 miles and is rather steep in parts. The loop winds it way through wildflower meadows and follows both Heart Lake's and Deep Lake's shorelines. Stay on the designated roads. Vegetation at these high elevations is easily damaged and takes many years to recover.
To Travel the Loop Road:
From the Deep Lake Day Use parking area, ride up the hill and turn right. After .9 miles, the road will fork, go left on FDR 600 towards Indian Camp. After 1.6 miles there will be another fork, turn left onto Buck Creek, FDR 643. At 1.7 miles, there will be another fork, turn left on Heart Lake Road, FDR 630. Stay on this road until you reach Heart Lake. At Heart Lake, at approximately 2.5 miles, turn left. Continue until you have traveled a total of 4.8 miles. This will bring you to FDR 600. Turn left and continue until you return to Deep Lake.
FISHING - Good fishing is available at both Deep Lake and Heart Lake for rainbow, brook, and lake trout.
SCENIC VIEWS - There are scenic views continuously along this loop. They include spectacular views of Heart Lake, Deep Lake, and meadows of wildflowers.
HISTORY - Ute hunting parties camped at Deep Lake in the early 1800's. President Teddy Roosevelt followed nearly a century later when his Flattops hunting party camped at the lake in 1905. Pioneer travelers on the Dotsero to Meeker wagon road rested at a hotel which was built on the lake in 1890. After the hotel was destroyed by fire in 1906, the U.S. Forest Service built a guard station on the northwest edge of Deep Lake. It has since been removed. Heart Lake was increased in size and depth by the Colorado Division of Wildlife for better fish habitat. On the south side of the lake a study was done in 1948 on grazing of land. The fenced off area from this study remains.