Mills Lake, Black Lake, Frozen Lake Trail is a 11.4 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Estes Park, CO that features a lake and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible from May until November. Horses are also able to use this trail.
Take Hwy. 36 out of Estes Park to RMNP entrance, then go to Bear Lake Rd. and follow it to Glacier Gorge TH.
My brother an I hiked this trail on 10/14. We started off around 9:40 am from Bear Lake parking lot because the Glacier Gorge trailhead lot was full. We arrived back to the car at 5:00pm. It was a little windy that day but the hike was much more picturesque than the scenery we're used to in Cleveland. We put microspikes on about 1/4 of a mile from Black Lake and wore them for the remainder of the hike.
After Black Lake the trail becomes much less visible (the snow cover doesn't help) and we were unfortunately never able to find Frozen Lake after an additional 45 minutes to an hour of hiking. We ended up running into a solo hiker (not recommended up there) who also was having the same issue. Looking back on Google maps afterwards it looks like we might have veered too much to the right climbing up and the terrain. In this time we also saw a decent sized paw print in the fresh snow (3-4 days) that appeared to be that of a bobcat or mountain lion. Aside from that, we saw some chipmunks, trout, and elk when we were driving out.
Great hike with amazing views. When you get to black lake, hike a little further and you'll get an amazing view of the basin. Definitely not for a novice in terms of length and terrain.
Amazing. The first snow of the year was melting as we climbed. The left ridge was glistening so brightly it was difficult to gaze for long. Wildlife included birds, trout, blue grouse and moose in one trip.
This hike was so much fun and not strenuous! I went 9/17/16 and saw very beautiful foliage. Definitely a photo opp trail. There were quite a few people on the trail, but not so many as to ruin a peaceful hike. Bring a lunch and have a rest on the rocks once you get to Mills Lake!
This has been my favorite hike so far, not because it was pretty easy, but because the scenery surrounding it was amazing. The beauty of the lakes by the mountains never fails to mesmerize me. I went fairly early in the morning so it was super peaceful, definitely gave it extra points.
Nice hike, the area near Mills Lake is gorgeous!! Busy trail, & mosquitoes were pretty bad, Nice falls on the way there
We went from Glacier Gorge TH to a little pass Jewel lake and turned around 8 miles total. Great views. We started at 530am and there was parking available. Surprised that there was as many hikers to Mills lake.
Beautiful! Love the glacier lakes!!
This was the best hike yet! You get Alberta falls, wonderful scenic overlooks into the valley, awesome rugged peaks, beautiful lakes, peaceful hiking through the conifers, and Mills Lake itself is very accessible unlike some of the others. The trail generally rises fairly gently and was a real pleasure. don't missed this one!
Probably our favorite hike from the trip! Definitely worth it. You do get people on the trail but I'd imagine that it's not as many as you may find later in the day on the Emerald Lake trail. On the way there you get some cool panoramas. Beautiful views on the lake with the mountains reflecting in the water.
Also recommend continuing onto Jewel Lake from Mills Lake. Also beautiful.
Hiked from Alberta Falls trailhead to Mills lake. Great hike with plenty of shade and many beautiful waterfalls. Mills lake was definitely worth the easy/moderate hike.
Very gorgeous hike. Adequate shade, but there's a fair amount of exposed spots. Inclines can be decent in a few spots, but not bad. The only gripe I have is the crowds. So crowded in peak season, even on a weekday. Especially from the trailhead to Alberta Falls. Still, stunning views and well worth it. If you go to Mills, it's worth it to go to the end of it where Jewel Lake is.
The end result of Mills Lake is worth the hike!