#2 of 61 national parks in United States of America

Best trails in Rocky Mountain National Park

53,014 Reviews
Looking for a great trail in Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado? AllTrails has 239 great hiking trails, trail running trails, dogs no trails and more, with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers, and nature lovers like you. Ready for some activity? There are 120 moderate trails in Rocky Mountain National Park ranging from 0.8 to 39 miles and from 7,834 to 13,316 feet above sea level. Start checking them out and you'll be out on the trail in no time!
Description

Rocky Mountain National Park is one of the most popular natural parks featuring 76 mountains each over 10 thousand feet high. Equally enjoyable on foot or from your car, there are four separate ecosystems: montane, subalpine, alpine tundra, and riparian. Each has its own wildlife, beautiful scenery including alpine lakes, fantastic summits, and stunning views. The park is open all year round, but there will be closures due to weather. The park is easily accessible by shuttle from Denver International Airport and many shuttles run between the various trailheads, the Moraine Park Visitor Center and even the Glacier Basin Campgrounds. Fees: All passes are available at all park entrance stations. 1-Day Pass - Automobile - $25.00 Valid for date of purchase. Covers single, non-commercial vehicle with capacity of less than 16 passengers. 7-Day Pass - Automobile - $35.00 Valid for seven consecutive days (including date of purchase). Covers single, non-commercial vehicle with capacity of less than 16 passengers. 7-Day Pass - Per Person - $20.00 Valid for seven consecutive days (including date of purchase). Applies to walk-ins, bicycles, and non-commercial groups. 7-Day Pass - Motorcycle - $30.00 Valid for seven consecutive days (including date of purchase). Covers one motorcycle. 1-Day Pass - Per Person - $15.00 Valid for date of purchase. Applies to walk-ins, bicycles, and non-commercial groups. 1-Day Pass - Motorcycle - $25.00 Valid for date of purchase. Covers one motorcycle. Rocky Mountain National Park Annual Pass - $70.00 Unlimited entry for one year from date of purchase Accessibility: The Interagency Access Pass for free or discounted admission for US Citizens or permanent residents with permanent disabilities is accepted here. The visitor centers, bookstores, and information desks are all mobility equipment accessible. The visitor centers also have wheelchair accessible bathrooms and drinking fountains. Assistive listening devices and sign language interpretation services are available but require advanced notice to guarantee availability (two weeks is suggested for assisted listening devices, a month for sign language interpreters). Call the main park number (970-586-1206) for more information. Park films at the Beaver Meadows and Kawuneeche Village Visitor Centers include closed-captioning. The park brochure is available is both braille and large-print formats. The summer shuttle buses that operate along the Bear Lake corridor are wheelchair accessible. You can call Rocky Mountain Transit to learn more about wheelchair accessible Town of Estes Park shuttle buses at (970) 577-7477. Electric Personal Assistance Mobility Devices (EPAMD) such as Segways as allowed for people with disabilities in certain areas including: sidewalks, parking lots, roads closed to motor vehicles, and four of the trails. There are wheelchair accessible picnic tables and restrooms at several of the trailheads including Lily Lake, Sprague Lake, and Coyote Valley. There are both “front-country” and “back-country” wheelchair accessible camping sites at various locations. Many of the overlooks along Trail Ridge Road have designated accessible parking. Service animals must be on-leash throughout the park. Additional accessible trails and facilities information can be found here: https://www.nps.gov/romo/planyourvisit/accessibility.htm

Show more
Map of trails in Rocky Mountain National Park
Park information
Acreage:
265,807 acres
Contact
970-586-1206
Top trails (239)
#1 - Emerald Lake Trail
Rocky Mountain National Park
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(5571)
Length: 3.2 mi • Est. 1 h 17 m
This scenic hiking trail through the Tyndall Gorge to Emerald Lake is an extremely popular route in Rocky Mountain National Park. Starting from the Bear Lake Trailhead, hikers will walk through pine forests, walk past pristine alpine lakes including Nymph Lake and Dream Lakes, and be treated to beautiful vistas of rocky peaks. Throughout your trip you’ll come across incredible views of Flattop Mountain, Hallett Peak, Glacier Gorge, and Tyndall Glacier. This is a great hike for photographers to capture spectacular shots of the surrounding mountains along the trail. You can also hike to Emerald Lake in the winter - you can stop at the Estes Park mountain shop to pick up snow shoes or microspikes before arriving. Consider extending your journey to the beautiful Lake Haiyaha by turning left just before reaching Dream Lake! The parking lot for Emerald Lake Trail is at the end of Bear Lake Road - a short drive from Estes Park in Colorado. There is minimal elevation gain along the path which is paved for the first half-mile. The trail to Emerald Lake is open year-round and is very popular, so arrive early to secure a spot. Parking lots tend to fill up quickly during the summer season, so you may want to consider taking the shuttle bus to Bear Lake instead of driving.Show more
#2 - Sky Pond via Glacier Gorge Trail
Rocky Mountain National Park
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow Star(2329)
Length: 8.5 mi • Est. 4 h 24 m
Featuring some of the best views in all of Rocky Mountain National Park, the hike to Sky Pond is sure to leave you breathless. Beginning at the Glacier Gorge Trailhead along Bear Lake Road, this route will take you by Alberta Falls, The Loch (also known as Loch Vale), Timberline Falls, and more! Shortly after setting off along the Glacier Gorge Trail, you’ll come to Alberta Falls. For much of the climb, you’ll have Glacier Creek at your left hand side. Once you reach The Loch, this stream becomes known as the Icy Brook. Next, you’ll come to the trail junction for Andrews Glacier leading to the right. At this point, the Sky Pond is just ahead and is located shortly after reaching the Lake of Glass. This final stretch of the trail has incredible views of Taylor Glacier and the jagged peaks of the Rockies. This route takes you by some of the prettiest alpine lakes in the national park. For this reason, these trails and the parking lot fill up fast. It is recommended that you arrive early in the morning and consider taking the free shuttle to access the Bear Lake area instead of driving. If hiking this route in the winter, it is highly recommended that you bring microspikes and trekking poles.Show more
#3 - The Loch via Glacier Gorge Trail
Rocky Mountain National Park
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow Star(2577)
Length: 5.4 mi • Est. 2 h 10 m
If you do not have time to hike all the way up to the Sky Pond, the trek to The Loch from the Glacier Gorge Trailhead is a fantastic and shorter alternative. This incredible route features most of the amazing views you’ll see on the way up to the Sky Pond without as much elevation gain. Located near the popular Bear Lake Trailhead, this moderate hike starts along the Glacier Gorge Trail. You’ll start out on a rather gentle incline and pass Alberta Falls before making your way around the Eastern Glacier Knobs. Between the West and East Glacier Knobs, you’ll come to a trail junction that leads north to the gorgeous Lake Haiyaha. Those looking for a longer day hike can turn here and loop back to the Bear Lake Trailhead by Dream Lake. At this same trail intersection, you’ll also have the option to take a detour to Glacier Falls and Mills Lake. Those simply looking to enjoy the beauty of the Loch Vale Trail can continue straight here. The remainder of the route features incredible views of Taylor Glacier and the surrounding mountain peaks. This area of the park is home to some of the most beautiful alpine lakes in the world. Take the time to rest and enjoy lunch once you arrive at The Loch. The Bear Lake Road area is one of the most popular destinations in Rocky Mountain National Park, so it is highly recommended that you get there early or consider taking the shuttle since the parking lot can fill up quickly.Show more
#4 - Gem Lake Trail
Rocky Mountain National Park
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(2426)
Length: 3.4 mi • Est. 2 h 2 m
Gem Lake is a great little hike with some awesome views of Estes Park. The hike starts just outside of Estes up Devils Gulch Road. Turn on to Lumpy Ridge Road and park in the lot. A pass is needed for accessing any of the trails in the park and dogs are not allowed.Show more
#5 - Chasm Lake
Rocky Mountain National Park
hardYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow Star(1576)
Length: 8.2 mi • Est. 4 h 19 m
Chasm Lake is a classic, must-do Colorado hike. You’ll get incredible views while traversing the subalpine forest up to the alpine tundra. The lake sits below the spectacular Long’s Peak, the highest in the park. You’ll start at Long’s Peak Trailhead and hike along the Long’s Peak Trail for about 3 miles. This trail is not particularly difficult, but steadily climbs the whole way. This trailhead is very popular and becomes full early in the morning. Many hikers use it to hike Long’s Peak, arriving between 3 AM and 5 AM. Eventually you’ll get above the tree line, and be exposed the rest of the hike. Considering the exposure, it’s best to do this hike in the morning before thunderstorms move in. In spring, these exposed sections are often snowfields requiring spikes and hiking poles. You’ll eventually turn left onto the Chasm Lake Trail. After about a mile, the trail becomes a rock scramble through a boulder field. There are cairns that lead the way up to the cirque where you’ll find the lake. Take in the views, and then return the way you came! There is a porta-potty at the Chasm Lake Junction.Show more
#6 - Dream Lake Trail
Rocky Mountain National Park
easyYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(1553)
Length: 2.0 mi • Est. 1 h 6 m
Start at the Bear Lake trailhead parking lot in Glacier Gorge. There are also options to shuttle buses there as well from other parts of Rocky Mountain National Park. Follow the signs for Nymph lake, your first destination. In summer it is filled with lily pads. Heading up to Dream Lake from there follows a well-maintained trail, with great views, wildflowers, and wildlife. Get ready for a vertical climb with some good elevation gain from the trailhead to the lake. The trail is clearly marked and easy to follow. Once you reach Dream Lake, you are in for a scenic view. The alpine lake water is so clear that users say one can see the cutthroat trout in it very clearly. Users highly recommend wearing microspikes in the winter months due to icy parts of the trail. It can be very windy by the lake, so make sure to bring appropriate clothing. Show more
#7 - Alberta Falls Trail
Rocky Mountain National Park
easyYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(1282)
Length: 1.6 mi • Est. 49 m
Family-friendly, easy hike from Glacier Gorge Junction trailhead. Beautiful falls and views of surrounding peaks. One of the most popular hikes in Rocky Mountain National Park, it can be quite crowded. The hike is short and easy and one of the most scenic hikes in the park. The trail starts at Glacier Gorge Junction trailhead, and heads south, paralleling the creek. At about 0.3 miles, the trail intersects with two others, one branching back toward the north to Sprague Lake, and slightly further with the trail coming down from Bear Lake. At the intersection with Bear Lake Trail, turn left. The trail passes several aspen groves, and into pine forest. At about 0.5 miles, it opens up onto a ledge of rock offering an overlook of Glacier Gorge. From there, the trail parallels Glacier Creek to the Falls. Alberta Falls roars through a granite chute. The rock slabs surrounding the Falls are a great place to explore and picnic. You can take the trail further to several beautiful lakes in the park: The Loch (aka Loch Vale), Mills Lake, Lake Haiyaha and Black Lake. Show more
#8 - Deer Mountain Trail
Rocky Mountain National Park
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(1551)
Length: 6.0 mi • Est. 2 h 26 m
Deer Mountain Trail is a great hike to Deer Mountain Peak that offers panoramic views from the top. The trail can be accessed at the Deer Mountain Trailhead off of Trail Ridge Road. The trail starts off in a valley and soon enters a steep forested area, dominated by species such as ponderosa pine. Once you enter the forested area, the trail has many switchbacks that ease into the elevation change. The trail is easy to follow until the last half mile or so. Finding the summit requires a steep little jaunt up to the top. Once at the Deer Mountain summit, you are rewarded with gorgeous views of Longs Peak, Moraine Park, Upper Beaver Meadows, and Estes Park. This is one of the many popular hiking trails in Rocky Mountain National park and there is limited parking in the parking area. It is advised to get there early to secure a parking spot. Many people on this trail underestimate it - make sure to bring plenty of water and hiking boots!Show more
#9 - Twin Sisters Peak Trail
Rocky Mountain National Park
hardYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(1422)
Length: 7.5 mi • Est. 4 h 43 m
In winter months you can park across from Lily Lake and start your hike there, this adds about a quarter mile each way. The hike up Twin Sisters Peak is hard especially when there is loose snow and ice patches. Once you reach the top you will be rewarded with wonderful views. As you reach the summit, the trail becomes very steep and windy. Check the weather ahead of time and bring the appropriate gear for the conditions. Be alert for thunderstorms which can form quickly, monitor the weather before you hike and watch for storm-cloud formations during the hike.Show more
#10 - Bear Lake Nature Trail
Rocky Mountain National Park
easyYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(1191)
Length: 0.7 mi • Est. 17 m
A popular trail for families, this high-altitude lake has stunning views of the snow-capped Rocky Mountains all around. In the wintertime, it is frequently used for snowshoeing. You can also branch off to reach Bierstadt Lake by going further north. The parking lot is off of Bear Lake Road and there are bathroom facilities there. Accessibility: This trail is not fully wheelchair or stroller friendly. However, both routes from the parking lot have partial accessibility before getting steep (about 0.1 miles going north/counterclockwise and about 0.2 miles if going south/clockwise). The surface is packed dirt however there are rocks and roots on the trail. Please take caution as the trail may become slippery due to ice and snow during the winter or rain during the summer. The trailhead has accessible parking and bathrooms. The most accessible shorter trails can be viewed here: https://www.alltrails.com/trail/us/colorado/bear-lake-southShow more
Showing results 1 - 10 of 239