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on Lake Isabelle Trail

hiking
2 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.

Family of 4 with an 11 and 13 year old. One of the best hikes we have ever done. Got there around 8 and got the last marking spot; so arrive early. Gorgeous trail with a gentle grade. Agree with others who recommend going up the left side of the falls. We tried to extend to Ouzel Lake, but the trail was hot and steep. Just too much.

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.

The hike was really nice. The waterfall was okay though.

I parked at Long TH at 10ish on a Tuesday. Someone was leaving. Decided I also wanted to hike up to Isabell Glacier. I think it added 3 ish miles to the trip. But finding snow for the pup to play in was worth it. Plus it was gorgeous. The hike up to the Continental divide was more difficult. The trail isn’t hard until the split from Isabell Glacier. They are doing a lot of work on the trail which is awesome. The scenery is prettier from below. Typical rocky above the tree line hike for the last 2 miles. If you are going to do it. Must make it to the sign!

hiking
5 days ago

Great trail if you love water! The stream and various falls are all along the trail up to Ouzel Falls. At Ouzel, venture to the left to get up close to the falls ... find a good rock and enjoy the beauty. Instead of doing this as an out and back, we continued on past the falls, picked up the Wild Basin Trail and then at the Thunder Lake Trail junction turned right. This will take you past several campsites and connect back into the main trail. We really enjoyed this added section. (made the total distance a little over 6 miles) We arrived at 7:45 am and there were still 10+ parking spots left. Recommend getting there early to get ahead of the crowds.

hiking
5 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
6 days ago

Very pleasant & fairly easy hike, mostly in the woods, past several nice waterfalls (Copeland Falls and Calypso Cascades) and culminating at the best of the bunch, Ouzel Falls. Nice views of Longs towards the end as well. We went in the late afternoon and had no trouble finding parking at the Wild Basin trailhead or in navigating the dirt road in a 2WD. All in all, a great alternative to the Bear Lake craziness at RMNP.

hiking
6 days ago

This was our last RMNP hike ☹️. I wanted something easy (after having done a few days of alpine mountain hikes) and yet has good views. We also wanted to sleep in for the day so I have to avoid overly popular and crowded trails. This trail fits the bill.
We arrived close to 11am and was able to park at the trail head since the early birds are just done with their hikes then. Much nicer to be right at the trail head than have to park on the dirt road where you may end up walking close to 1 mile to get to the trail head.
Most of the trail is along the river which is very nice and you can hear the sound of waterfall which is very refreshing. The last mile is more technical. Once you get to the bridge at the base of Ouzel falls, I took the advise of other reviewers and walked to the left of the bridge and up an unmarked trail to get up close and next to the fall. Quite amazing. Since we started off late, we were caught in a bit of rain and slight hail but it was nothing too bad as the walk down was fairly easy and not technical.

Great trail and agree with other reviewers that you must walk/ climb through the trees to the left of the falls to see the Ouzel Falls which would be pretty easy to miss. I don't find the falls to be INCREDIBLE, but the trail was great and there are quite a few other water features along the way. We saw a moose just over a mile in! We were at the trailhead by 645am and there was plenty of parking.

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

One of my favorites. Hiked 9/2014 and again 7/2018 and the wild basin area continues to be my favorite areas. In 2014 I did not climb the top of the ozual falls, tho this past trip in 2018 I did and wow what a view. At ozual falls keep hiking left into that boulder collective valley, there is a trail you will come across but if not just keep hiking along the rock ridge to a point and theres where you turn right and start making your way back to the waterfall to see 2 amazing views, one down the falls and the mountain view behind you. Def my new favorite lunch spot

Beautiful. Well-marked hike.

hiking
8 days ago

Such amazing views!!! Go all the way up to the peak, don’t stop at the sign. Saw many people do this! 360 panoramic views at the top, breathtaking.

hiking
9 days ago

BEAUTIFUL! Really easy hike and great for dogs, took mine and he had an easy time going on the trail

It was an amazing hike and had some AMAZING views. We hiked it and it was rainy and FREEZING. So I recommend warm clothes, gloves, hats, and rain gear because it was unpredictable. It took us 6.5 hours round trip with 2 people from Colorado and 3 people from Ohio (all of our first 13ner). Definitely not an easy hike especially with the rocks at the top but it’s totally do able if you are inexperienced. The wind at the summit was unimaginable. We had to stay hunkered down because standing was almost impossible. Trekking polls were a good option to have too! Overall it was an amazing hike and I would do it again!

Highly recommended views were amazing. The trail is very well maintained. So beautiful!

Lake Isabelle did not disappoint, we saw a moose! Hike is mostly easy- towards the end I might describe as moderate. Take extra water- the altitude bothered me a bit. I also think that from 10am onwards some of the early birds are leaving because several parking spots opened up.

This is such a beautiful hike. Definitely one of my favorites in Colorado so far. I recommend going early as the parking lots fill quickly.

hiking
10 days ago

As an avid hiker, I have to admit that I had my doubts when reading reviews that said “best or one of the best hikes”. However, I have to agree. This hike is amazing and perfect for the whole family. We got there fairly early (6:30ish), but parking at trailhead was already full so we had to park at Brainard Lake, which was also filling up quickly. But the little distance it adds is no big deal. Lots of beautiful wildflowers, gorgeous views, waterfalls, marmots and we saw 2 big bull moose at the first lake you pass. The only negative about this hike is the popularity of it; if I’ll do it again, I would make sure to be there earlier. (On a side note, if you own a National Park Pass, bring it. Mine was safely at home, because I thought it was $11 cash only)

It is beautiful up there today! We got to the full parking lot at 7:30, we stayed and waited for good half hour to park and it was rainy so waiting in the car was no big deal. The sun came out about 8:30 and it was glorious! This hike is easy and fun. You can’t beat the scenery! I would do it again!

no dogs on the trails? what's the point of allowing them in the park at all? pretty sorry for a national park.

Really great trail near Estes Park. The Wild Basin trailhead is a lot less crowded than Bear Lake. We went early (7am) and it felt like we were alone for the most part.

Be sure to hike around the left side of the waterfall !

hiking
14 days ago

Nice, rigorous hike with plenty of terrain changes as you go. Started from Long Lake. Trail is undergoing maintenance with various crews at this time. Tread is rocky in many areas making passage more awkward and slow. Recommend an early start for parking and weather considerations. Traffic along the trail is heavy with lots of dogs accompanying their hikers. Even saw one hiker carrying two bearded dragons. Worth the effort for the beautiful views.

hiking
14 days ago

Our favorite family hike in Colorado... Isabelle has everything, from the verdant lake at the beginning and end, the gentle climbing with boulders and a rushing creek for taking breaks, waterfalls, bridges, and a serious climb just before Lake Isabelle, where you can stop for snacks while looking at Isabelle Glacier. Not great for anyone with bad knees, but awesome for families with kids of all ages and dogs, too. We saw several backpackers who had been camping at the glacier and they said the entire trail was now passable. We all agreed this is a “moderate” difficulty trail, but so worth it.

hiking
14 days ago

Pretty awesome hike. When you get the waterfall make sure you walk left of the bridge, and you can get right up next to the falls. It’s a pretty awesome waterfall. You can feel the mist from multiple spots. Also if you’re feeling up to it, you can actually hike to the top of the falls. It’s an amazing view. You have to go a little off trail and just walk up and around the canyon it’s on.

As a Colorado native and avid hiker, I can honestly say this is the best hike I’ve ever been on! Had to park at Brainard lake (lake Isabelle parking lot is small and fills up quickly) but was not a problem at all. It only added a mile or two to the entire hike. Most hikes are pretty with a nice view at the end, but this was absolutely breathtaking every step of the way. I’ve never seen so many wildflowers in one place before. Also, I’d rate this as moderate, not easy, due to some incline/rocky areas. I’ll be back again!!

hiking
15 days ago

Our favorite RHMP hike so far. We loved the well shaded route to Calypso Falls. It got more open after that, and the trail became a nice combination of forest and views. Instead of turning around at Ouzel Falls, we continued on to the Thunder Lake Trail then headed back to the trailhead from there, making the hike a lollipop instead of an out and back. We saw way less people going back by doing this and we got to see new stuff. We got to the trailhead at 7am on a Tuesday and the parking lot only had a dozen cars in out, but I think it filled up quickly after we arrived, and it was so crazy when we left at noon that it was almost a traffic jam.

a family favorite for many years

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