How long does it take to day hike through the Enchantments? 

Bottom line: About 14 hours. Typical hiking times range from 18 hours to as little as 4 hours.

Everyone hikes at their own pace. To finish this 18 mile trail by daylight requires at least very brisk walking with minimal stops. 

People who finish their Enchantments through hike in 4 or 5 hours do it by trail running — really running — almost the entire distance. Together with the 4400 foot elevation gain, that’s a real workout.

Determined hikers finish the trail in about 12 hours. For most of the summer months, that leaves plenty of daylight at each end of the hike. 

The time calculation also depends on what time of the season you hike through the Enchantment Basin. Don’t underestimate how snowpack and runoff will impact your speed early in the summer. And to beat the midsummer heat, start very early.

Allow time for stops. It’s a shame to hike through all of that beautiful country and not pause to appreciate it. You’ll need to stop to replenish your water supply, and take pictures, at least. And you might meet goats on the trail.

Try to avoid being on Aasgard Pass or the Snow Creek Wall routes in the dark. Snow Creek is the route between Lake Viviane and Upper Snow Lake, sometimes called the Sylvester High Route. These are routes, not trails, and are difficult (or even dangerous) by headlamp.

Speaking of headlamps, be sure you have one per person and spare batteries in your packs!

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