The Gibson Lake Trailhead provides access to the Gibson Lake Trail, which travels in a westerly direction up the Lake Fork drainage to scenic Gibson Lake. Just below the parking area, you will cross a small stream. From that point until you reach treeline, the stream drainage will be to the left (south) of the trail as you ascend. At about 1 ¾ miles, the trail reaches a fork. Bear left at this trail junction (the right fork is an unmarked trail leading up to the Continental Divide). At about 2 miles, you will be at treeline. Shortly thereafter the trail makes three major stream crossings. After the third crossing, the trail bears southwest through willows and tundra up to the shelf on which Gibson Lake is located. Tundra flowers are in abundance in mid-summer. At the south end of the lake, there is a long, ribbon-like waterfalls draining into Gibson Lake from a small lake above Gibson. Although open year-round, access during the winter may be limited due to snow.
From Bailey, drive west on U.S. Hwy 285 for 14.3 miles. Turn right (north) off Hwy 285 onto Park County Road #60. This road is also designated as Forest Service Road #120, and is commonly called the “Hall Valley Road.” Travel on #120 for a total distance of 6.5 miles to the trailhead. The last 1.4 miles above Hall Valley Campground are very rough, and border on being classified as a 4WD road. Allow at least 50 minutes to drive the 6.5 miles on Forest Service Road #120. As you drive the #120 road, you will pass Handcart Campground at mile 4,8 (from U.S. Hwy 285), and Hall Valley Campground at mile 5.1. At mile 5.0, just before Hall Valley Campground, bear left at the fork in the road. There is a small parking area at the trailhead.