Explore Bucket List Hikes! - view hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Bucket List Hikes! Map
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hiking
23 hours ago

This was definitely not a 7.2 mile east hike. The sign at the beginning of the trail says 10 miles and it is uphill almost the entire time. I would've rated this as a moderate. The views are incredible the entire time. be sure to arrive early because we got stuck in a parking lot 2 miles away from the trail head. So our hike went from 7 miles to 14 in total.

hiking
1 day ago

Very rocky trail, too many people and a drained lake. It should be called a reservoir not a lake. People should be TOLD when getting a permit that the lake has been drained. Huge disappointment. (see pic of Jasper pond)

My girlfriend and I loved it! If you’re looking for water falls there were none this time of year (August) took is 6.9 Miles to do the whole thing

hiking
2 days ago

Couldn't have asked for a better hike today. The weather was beautiful, we had to park at the Brainard Lake Lot after getting there at 9am. It wasn't nearly as crowded as I had expected
Everyone we did come across was super nice and very quiet. If someone can tell me of a place that is this easy of a hike and even more beautiful please let me know. I'm not sure there is a place.

Wonderful views. The trail was great for the kids (ages 6 and 9). Bring your bug repellant of choice. Lots of mosquitos near the lake. Soo beautiful!

Trailhead wasn't too busy. Good parking spots available. Lots of bugs. Bring your bug repellent of choice. Trail started out a little steeper than anticipated. Was a bit toasty on this particular day, but there were nicely shaded areas. Start early!

beautiful, moderate hike, very crowded on the weekends. recommend arriving at trailhead before 730am. diamond lake has plenty of space for the masses but is busy by 930am. recommended!

hiking
3 days ago

Thought this trail was just ok compared to others in the park. You have to walk uphill the entire time with no views except a waterfall early and then the big payoff at the end being the lake. Otherwise just trees and more trees! Glad I did it so I can cross it off the list but probably won't do this one again.

Absolutely beautiful! There were lil steams on the way up that my dog could drink from. I took the Diamond Lake trail and it was amazing!! EVERYONE had their dogs on leash. I was shook.

hiking
3 days ago

Great hike! Definitely not too difficult... fairly trafficked on the weekend as of you approach the Lake. Lots of fun waterfalls and little features along the way.... If you’re doing this on a weekend definitely make it to the trail head by 7-7:15AM or you’ll be in a jam to find parking! We made it at 8 and parked about a half mile down!

hiking
4 days ago

Great hike! We were on the trailhead at 7:00. We saw a big bull elk and 1 deer. The hike had a lot of elevation change but was so worth it. The lake is beautiful, and filled with cutthroat trout. My husband and son spend several hours fly fishing. Amazing day and hike!

Walk the path by the river, it’s beautiful and is not nearly as rocky. We walked the river path up and it was gorgeous!! It brings you out at a nice place to lay out in the rocks and then you continue on to the main tail to the lake.

on Lake Isabelle Trail

hiking
4 days ago

Beautiful BUT: The Lake is now drained. There's only little water left. no more waterfall, and compared to a month ago most of the wildflowers are now gone.
Still a nice walk/hike, would suggest going later in the day as it gets crowded in the morning.

Just hiked it yesterday. Given the crazy amounts of people on the trail, we somehow had the lake to ourselves for the whole time we stayed up there. Maybe it was due to the late hour of our hike (we got to the lake around 5 pm) or maybe because it’s an extra mile-long spur off from the main trail. The lake was pretty and peaceful, not too spectacular, but definitely worth checking out.

on Ypsilon Lake Trail

hiking
5 days ago

Hiked Ypsilon today and my Fitbit said it was 10.03mi. Great Lake view, but make sure you don’t stop short at the little pond. I was quite shocked at the amount of people who were starting at 3pm in jeans with no water. Be smart, it’s not worth it.

The trail is beautiful and not too difficult. But I have to agree with other commenters that it’s very busy on weekends and the amount of loose rock is tricky. I still recommend it though because the lake and the waterfalls are relaxing. Also, parking at the Nederland park n ride and getting the shuttle is the way to go; it’s there every 15 minutes on the weekends and you don’t have to deal with the scarce parking at the trail head.

hiking
6 days ago

This was my first hike at RMNP, and it didn’t disappoint! My husband and I started at the bear lake trailhead, took a portion of the flattop mtn trail then when flattop mtn trail branched off to the left, we continued straight on the fern lake trail. We took the trail for a few miles and turned around right before two rivers lake. The incline was a good, challenging pace, not scrambling but not flat. We are beginner to intermediate hikers so this was perfect for us. The higher you get the rockier it gets on the trail. Some nice streams along the way and while it started off sunny and warm, it cooled at bit on the way up while in the pine forest. There was a portion of the trail that is next to a mountain that is nothing but rocks, so we slowed down a bit on this. This portion was also very sunny, but did not last long. Did not see any wildlife. I would do this again and next time probably go farther! Beautiful views along the way and not too crowded. I noticed the farther we went on the trail, the less foot traffic we came across. We arrived at the trailhead around 8:20am and it was full. Was able to snag a spot though. Might consider arriving a little earlier next time. First time at RMNP and I’m hooked. I never want to leave!

I usually love this hike but the lake was about half drained, almost no water.

on Big Meadows Trail

6 days ago

Beautiful hike. Trail well maintained and easy to follow.

Great little hike. Got there at 830 ish and had to park further away.

Beautiful stream and gorgeous lake

Did this hike with wife and kids (2 and 5), had hiking child carriers.

I’m honestly hesitant to give this a review because of how good it is. This is a hidden gem (from tourism) and perfect alternative to the emerald lake, dream lake, lily lake, etc. It’s also not only easy, but a great duration. I suggest an evening hike for the sunset at Lake Isabelle, absolutely incredible. Check weather though for any afternoon hikes, always.

Pretty darn good hike. We parked at fern lake trailhead and hiked to the bear lake trailhead and took the shuttle back. Note that the shuttle does not go all the way back to the fern lake trailhead. You will still have 0.7 miles to get to the actual trailhead. Overall it’s almost 10 miles and about 2700 ft gain in elevation. It would be a lot easier to go bear lake to fern lake. Bear lake is higher so the climb is much less daunting. Parking is more difficult at bear lake. Either way the scenery is gorgeous and the streams and lakes are beautiful as is fern falls.

hiking
7 days ago

Secluded and peaceful. Great views of rockies on the way.

hiking
7 days ago

This trail was gorgeous but we went on a Wednesday and it was extremely busy. It was a pretty easy trail for an amazing view.

hiking
8 days ago

My new most favorite place. Absolutely worth the hike. However it is 9 miles long, not 8 miles. I did the entire trail out and back in 3,5 hours time. (Including breaks.)
The lake is so beautiful! I did the hike in the afternoon and even though the parking lot was full, not many people went the entire way to the lake. I ended up having the lake all to myself. The beginning of the trail is pretty busy. Also beware of horses. There are horse tours going to the lake. There is enough shade as most of the hike is in the forest. Not a lot of views, except the first 1,5 miles. From then on it’s just forest until you reach the lake. The first little pond right before the lake is also very beautiful.

backpacking
8 days ago

Nice well marked trail that takes you up to Lost Lake, a clear, shallow mountain lake at about 10,000 feet elevation. It’s a bit tough on the way up, but a fun hike down. Nice Mountain View’s and shallow rocky rivers with a couple large waterfalls.

Liked it better than Flattop mtn, Hallett Peak, and even better than Emerald Lake. The least crowded hike in the Rockies so far with the best views going both ways on the trail. Amazing views at the lake. Wish we would have done the social trail to Helene Lake on the way back...next time.

Best hike in Colorado! Beautiful views and an easy hike without a lot of elevation gain

Great trail, with diverse landscapes and reasonable uphills. However I recommend to do an extra effort and continue to Bear Lake instead of coming back. This would imply a “hard” hike, taking into account the uphill between Fern Lake and Lake Helene. But it pays off!: You don’t repeat landscapes and you will experience the rocky world of the RMNP, with vistas of some glaciers. And you arrive to the crowded Bear Lake, where the bus is waiting for you to bring you back to Lake Fern trailhead. Give it a try!

Beautiful. Well-marked hike.

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