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on Emerald Lake Trail

4 hours ago

Gorgeous trail! The leaves are changing! Beautiful views along the way, it was very peaceful. Went today with my husband. I think it helped (as far as foot traffic) to be here on a weekday and also that we started a little after 5 pm—we only saw a handful of people. It was an awesome early evening hike for our first day here at RNMP!

Three of us hiked up to Blue Lake, then two of us made our way up to Little Blue Lake using the directions from AllTrails... Well we sort of lost the non-existent trail for a little bit...

The map, and the descriptions takes you through a fun but quite precarious boulder field. You would need to have great mobility to make that trip... Or perhaps there was an easier route we missed when we veered off course a tad.

On the return, we found a far easier way up/down following a cut-off which I will try to show in my labeled photo (the one with all the arrows). If you take the tiny trail up, you can zig-zag your way up and across terrain that is far easier to traverse than the boulder field.

It was magnificent, and while there were a fair few people on trail at 10am on that Saturday, it was far from crowded feeling. There was only one person that adventured all the way to Little Blue Lake while we were up there, so that was as serene as can be!

One moose was spotted nearish the trail towards the trailhead.

Gorgeous trail! I’m not the worlds most avid hiker and would still only rate the trail as moderate. The scramble wasn’t nearly as difficult or treacherous as I was expecting. I have a mild fear of heights and it didn’t phase me honestly. Definitely slightly overcrowded despite starting at 6:30am and finishing at 3pm (lots of stopping for views and extra walking around the lakes), although my boyfriend found a little lake to the side of Loch and proposed!!! Beautiful hike overall.

Make sure to keep going once you’re above the waterfall scramble to get to Sky Pond! We almost didn’t realize that Glass Lake wasn’t the end of the trail. Incredible hike - long, but not too strenuous.

(Be careful of aggressive elk!)

Did this hike about 5 days ago. The Golden aspen were striking and views of mountains ahead and on either side were magnificent. The falls are nice as well. It is quite sun exposed for much of the walk. We went early in morning but even then it was a hot day, but very lovely

Great walk out here today. lovely views all the way up passing falls and loch on route. few people on the go but more than enough room to pass on the trail.small scramble before you reach the level of sky pond but ok for most levels of ability with care. would recommend

We had a great time on this relatively easy trek. Trail mix fell into the Lake but we were able to retrieve it, and stayed dry in the smoothie container. But soooo many people in rmnp we will look for other places or maybe go once the weather detours most

Loved this hike! Great workout, beautiful views. We went from brainard lake, to Mitchell lake, to blue lake. We even saw a moose family along the way!

Great trail. Would recommend for anyone

Probably the most rewarding easy hike suitable for the entire family in the park. My 3 year old daughter was able to do the majority of the hike on her own short of a few steep stretches towards the end. With about 0.9 miles between each of the three lakes on the trail, it makes for regular breaks and helps keep everyone motivated for the next stop. Each lake offers something a bit different with all having a slightly different appeal. Great hike to share with new visitors of all abilities and a perfect entry level hike to RMNP.

Amazing trail hiked on 9/14/18. Arrive before 7 if you want to park at Glacier Gorge trailhead. Hike took us 6 hrs round trip but we took our time at the Loch, Timberline Falls, Lake of Glass, Sky Pond, and also detoured to Mills Lake on the return trip. Trail was long but otherwise not too difficult for a couple of moderately in shape amateur hikers. The waterfall scramble took all of a few minutes and so long as you watch your footing carefully on the wet rocks isn’t bad. Amazing scenery at every stop....tough to say which stop is the best which made for an extremely rewarding hike. Highly recommended.

Great trails and views on the way to Dream Lake and then Emerald Lake... get there early as I had to use the park and ride at 7:00 am but it was very quick and free.

Great day hike. Worth going up the small falls to eventually get to sky pond. Round trip somewhere between 4:30 to 5hrs.

backpacking
1 day ago

Saw a bull moose on this trail and wonderful views go in the fall !

Arrived 7:15am on a Monday in September. Only 3-4 other cars in the lot and saw no one else on the trail until we hit Isabelle. Water level is low (drained)but it was still a worthwhile hike and there’s still a decent amount of water left. A lot more foot traffic heading up to the lake when we were heading out. Back at the parking lot at 10:30am and lot was full with cars circling to find a spot. Easy hike-the elevation gain comes right before the lake.

Beautiful trail, well maintained and gorgeous views throughout the whole hike. I would say it is more of an easy hike than a moderate, although the altitude coupled with a lot of stair climbing towards the end did take my breath away a few times (as someone who is used to 800ft above sea level, this is a big change for me).

We arrived to the trail head around 7:30am on a Friday morning and the parking lot was only about 25% full. The hike up was not crowded at all but it was getting significantly busier on the way down. I would suggest starting at 7.

Beautiful views and on the way to Sky Pond. A lesiurly hike with some elevation.

Moderate hike with a little bouldering. We took our time and wrapped up the hike, plus Mirror lake and Mills lake in 5 hours. I'm a novice hiker and really enjoyed this hike.

I really loved this hike until the waterfall scramble. I really had no idea what it would be like, and I'm afraid of heights, but more so coming down. I think it helped me that the trail was busy and I could watch some other hikers come down - otherwise I was ready to turn around! I'm glad that I went on - Lake of Glass and Sky Pond were beautiful (hold on to your hats, though, it was very windy!) Also, there was a marmot that was overly tame at Lake of Glass - when we were there he ran off with a plastic water bottle (not ours). Don't feed the wildlife!

Easy hike from Bear Lake. Amazing views along the way.

hiking
2 days ago

Beautiful hike. Well worth it!

Incredible views at the lake! We logged 7.75 miles round trip with a short walk by the lake and parking close to the trail head.

Beautiful hike! We really enjoyed the variety of this hike including waterfalls, mountain vistas, gorgeous lakes, and groves of aspens. The wind above the scramble was strong today, but it was definitely worth hiking all the way to Sky Pond. The gradual elevation change helped us warm up to take on the steeper sections that start before the scramble. Also, we liked the decent amount of shade along the way.

We took the shuttle from the Bear Lake Park and Ride, which worked well for us. There was a bit of a wait to leave in the morning, but I think we only waited 5 minutes to take it back to our car.

What an amazing hike! Its really easy with a bit of a strong incline right before blue lake. Super dog and kid friendly plus there is plenty of space at the lake to hang out.

Awesome hike ! I would highly recommend it . Like the other reviews said, the elevation gain isn’t bad until the very end towards the waterfall. I was a little skeptical at first about the climb but it wasn’t bad at all . Actually the climb down was easier for me than the climb up. The scenery the whole trail is absolutely beautiful.

hiking
2 days ago

Great hike - semi quiet going up around 8:30am - lots of good flat parts with few rocky areas. Good forest, mountain and lake views. Parking near trailhead was full so parked at the Brainard Lake lot (past the pay area) so overall mileage out and back was closer to 7.3-7.5 miles.

Amazing hike! Start early to avoid crowds and wear layers (can get windy and colder towards the top) as well as well shoes w/ good traction (the rocks by the waterfall can be slippery). Make sure to continue past Glass Lake, which is just past the top of waterfall to Sky Pond. Fall colors are gorgeous right now. One of the best hikes in the park!

This trail was Epic! So beautiful. The forest was extremely peaceful with the Aspen trees changing color and whispering with the wind. The water falls and creeks are very nice. Small trout throughout the pond system.

Once you clear the tree line, thats when it becomes really exciting. Pretty steep elevation gains along the rocks. once you get to the last Falls, you have the rock wall climb up to Glass Lake and Sky Pond. It's a bit sketchy if you don't like heights, but totally worth it!! Just take it slow coming back down, and be sure of your hand and toe holds. it is slippery where the waterfall splashes you.

Sky Pond was very beautiful and the surrounding mountains are majestic. We also observed a mountain climber on SharkTooth to the right, way up there.

Get to the park Early! Bear and Glacier trail head Parking was closed before 8am on a Thursday. the park and ride isn't bad, and we saw a huge elk while riding back to the lot in the late afternoon.

It took me 6.5hours round trip, with plenty of picture time and about 45 mins at SkyPond. Bring lots of water and sunscreen. had spf70 and still got some rays...

Totally worth it. it's very popular, and passed a lot of people on the way back down in the afternoon.

Easy and short hike. A lot of people in the trail, but the trail is large enough to make your way in front of others. Nice lakes.

We were in the parking lot by 7h45 in the morning and it was full 15 minutes later. Be there really soon. The view is absolutely stunning when you pass the hardest part of the trail where you have to climb. Walking sticks would be anything but helpful at this point.

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