Emerald Lake Trail

EASY 236 reviews
#1 of 98 trails in

Emerald Lake Trail is a 3.2 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Estes Park, CO that features a lake and is good for all skill levels. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible from April until November.

3.3 miles 620 feet Out & Back

kid friendly


fly fishing


nature trips







wild flowers




no dogs

Take Hwy. 36 out of Estes Park to the RMNP entrance, then drive to the Bear Lake Road, take a left, and follow this road to the Bear Lake Trailhead.

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This is an excellent hike for an skill level or age. Not a lot of elevation gain, and a very clear path. You get to see Nymph Lake and Dream Lake along the way and there is are excellent views of Longs Peak along the way. I set up my hammock at Emerald Lake and hung out for awhile. Dramatic views and peacefulness.

1 day ago

4 days ago


Easy hike for everyone. I strongly recommend enjoy every moment you have without rushing on this trail. Such a beautiful hike and seeing three lakes. Of course Emerald Lake is a gem of all...be prepared for many adorable munchkins following you around at the lake.

7 days ago

Still my favorite hike here, you get 3 pretty lakes for the price of One! Great hike for the family or just yourself, done it twice, & would do it again any day!

10 days ago

11 days ago

busy but it was the weekend

13 days ago

Beautiful hike. Something to see with every turn. Also makes an amazing winter hike when the lakes are frozen over.

17 days ago

Very nice hike, five Elk, and peaceful even with the number of hikers on the trail. Well maintained trail.

21 days ago

I left on a Wednesday morning at 7:30 to arrive at 9:45 and it was super crowded. We had to park at the Park and Ride below the trailhead and wait about 20 minutes for a shuttle. It's worth the wait! Although tons of people were out for the same hike, it was absolutely stunning and fairly easy.

21 days ago


24 days ago

24 days ago


Glacier lakes are beautiful. Start the hike early, to avoid crowds and to get a parking spot.

24 days ago

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27 days ago

29 days ago


Gorgeous, packed trail. I went in early June and the lake was still covered in ice. I'm sure it's all clear now.