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

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Awesome hike. Hit the trail around 2:15 on Sunday, unusually late but what the hell. Pretty easy to moderate until you get past the first two lakes. Forested most of the way. Really great hike but compared to others in the area, specifically some from the trailheads a bit to the north, you can find some a bit more epic. With that said, parking is easy and it’s gorgeous.

Colorado is the best.

hiking
1 day ago

It’s a fun hike up to the lake with tons to see on the way. Dream Lake was our favorite part of the hike - absolutely gorgeous, we felt at point like we’d stepped into a lord of the rings movie. I agree the trail is moderate depending on the person. We hiked it pretty quickly but there were a couple parts that got a little steep. It’s partially paved or there are rock steps pretty much the whole way though. Great hike and would do it again! We got there early around 7am and it was not too crowded at all - go early.

hiking
1 day ago

Very pretty hike with good elevation gain, but huge crowds...

Beautiful, easy, hike! Got there around 9AM and it was extremely crowded the whole time. However, the views and lakes truly are incredible.

To help out some fellow inexperienced hikers such as myself: this trail is SO beautiful and it's one of my favorites so far! But you need to be prepared. It can be REALLY cold and rainy in here, so bring raincoats and potentially gloves and hats if you are one to get cold easily! The temperature in here can be a lot different than Denver. Experienced people probably already knew that but I sure didn't! Enjoy

Was warned about the crowds, so we left the Bear Lake parking lot at 6:45 AM. Hike was peaceful and spectacular. We stopped 3-4 times to catch our breath. We hiked at a modest pace and finished in two hours.

Beautiful hike... Well-marked and easy to follow. It will fall between easy to moderately-difficult depending on the person. The last bit of the trail leading up to Emerald Lake is the most challenging portion: a steep incline with LOTS of stairs. Dream Lake and Emerald Lake are breathtaking and well worth it, though. I gave it four stars because of how heavily trafficked it was. If you are looking for a peaceful wilderness experience... this may not be the choice for you. Lots of people, loud voices, and cell phones at every turn.

Beautiful scenery at every turn, and very, very crowded. I would rate this hike as Easy-Moderate. Half the trail is literally paved and the second half is well maintained stair steps. Our 5 year old tackled this with no problems.

took our young children and really enjoyed it! challenging but doable for them. plenty of shade and places to stop. breathtaking scenery.

Definitely gets full of traffic early, and make sure everyone uses the restroom before you park; the restrooms at the entrance are the most disgusting things I’ve ever walked in and then immediately out of.

Beautiful views along the entire walk!

Great route not to be missed if visiting area. Stay hydrated, especially if not used to altitudes.

Beautiful hike. Get there early, it gets crowded quickly.

Amazing hike with 11 and 13 year old kids. Crowded at Alberta Falls; but the crowds really drop off after that. The Loch is GORGEOUS, but don’t stop the the edge. Walk all the way around to get the views. We saw two sets of elk swimming in the lake. Would have loved to go all the way to Timberlake Falls or Sky Pond, but my family wasn’t having it.

Up and down

Gorgeous! Hike is moderate with trails easily marked. We saw many elk along the way. We took the shuttle from town because we arrived later in the day and couldn’t park at Big Bear of transfer station...they were full. It was a very pleasant drive up to the hike...and we could both admire the scenery!

This trail felt like walking through a fairy tail. Just too perfect. We arrived at 4:30, after the crowds were leaving; but the trail was still swamped with people. Completely worth the crowds. Just magical.

camping
6 days ago

We hiked this trail on the way to Andrews Creek campsite and it was awesome. We caught some nice sized rainbow trout that we cooked up for dinner. You need a permit if you are staying overnight and the campsites are by reservation only.

Vraiment beau paysage !!

hiking
7 days ago

Beautiful trail. Definitely arrive by 7:30 am to avoid heavy traffic. If you are not an early riser and always lucky, arrive around 10 am to take the early birds' spots.

Beautiful scenery but there are better ones than this lake.

I liked that this trail had variety of sceneries. Many shaded area as well as some meadows and rocky terrains. Great for dogs since there is a creek running by, and the lakes to get to. Wild flowers are beautiful in August. I saw a coyote (I think) and moose!

hiking
9 days ago

It's worth the uphill grade to see Emerald Lake. Very pretty and attainable.

off road driving
9 days ago

I did it with stock new Silverado. it was brutal for this kind of car, though it has 4x4 low and all that crap, this trail is not for stock SUV like KIA sportage or so, because it is really rocky and you dont enjoy the drive.
I would recommend a jeep or something like Expedition for this.

other than that, lake is nice and all, but not breathtaking.

Scenic and forested. The last 3/4 of the hike got hard and had me wondering if I was ever going to make it, but it was worth the effort to get to beautiful mountain lakes.

This hike without other factors should be a 5. Three great hikes in a short hike. But the amount of people on this trail just ruins it. Started at 830 and already way too late.

Once you get the lakes don't find a place to sit down immediately as other do. Explore around the lake to find some solitude.

Really want to do this hike again but starting at 530 am.

Did this hike with wife and kids (2 and 5). Had hiking carrier for them but they also took turns hiking.

hiking
9 days ago

Beautiful hike despite all the people.

Tough trail for someone who is not used to hiking but worth the view at the end!

hiking
10 days ago

Four lakes along the trail. There are all beautiful. My favorite is the dream lake. I went there in summer and it's so cool. Imagine How I was happy as I went there from south Arizona!

hiking
11 days ago

Easy trail. Beautiful view of lake

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