Alberta Falls Trail

EASY 531 reviews

Alberta Falls Trail is a 1.6 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Estes Park, Colorado that features a waterfall and is good for all skill levels. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from May until October. Horses are also able to use this trail.

DISTANCE
1.6 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
252 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

kid friendly

birding

hiking

horseback riding

nature trips

snowshoeing

trail running

walking

forest

river

views

waterfall

wild flowers

wildlife

rocky

no dogs

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.

hiking
14 days ago

In this side of the park, Alberta Falls is the entrance location to most trails. It’s very pretty, but there’s definitely a lot of foot traffic.

Whenever I go hiking, I zoom right by because there’s always so many people. The further back you get into the mountains, there’s (obviously) less and less people.

1 month ago

Nice pit stop on the way to black lake

snowshoeing
2 months ago

Great beginning trail for snowshoeing! We went from the Bear Lake trailhead to make the trip a little longer, and it was beautiful and peaceful!

hiking
2 months ago

hiking
2 months ago

Waterfall is currently iced up and slow flowing. Not one of the most exciting destinations to visit amongst the Rocky Mountain trails. Would recommend traversing past and head over to Mills Lake.

2 months ago

Beautiful even in snow-packed conditions. The falls are mostly frozen over right now, but there’s lots of easy trails in the area. Good grips on shoes (or traction clamps for shoes) would have made it easier, but still fun! And dress warm!!!

Very slippery in winter, wear good shoes with grip. Husband slipped three times. Beautiful falls.

hiking
3 months ago

Great introductory trail to RMNP. Easy for all ages and abilities.

hiking
3 months ago

Took the shuttle from the park and ride to the Glacier Gorge trailhead then up to the falls. The hike was good not too difficult. There were a handful of people on the trail then lots at the falls. Several people taking family photos and others having picnics.

3 months ago

This is one of my least favorite hikes in the park. They’re all so gorgeous & the falls are a little underwhelming in comparison

hiking
3 months ago

Hiked to Alberta Falls from Bear Lake. Very well maintained trail. The falls themselves were decent. Continued on to Loch Vale and Timberline Falls afterwards.

3 months ago

Nice hike up to pretty waterfalls! Lots of big rocks for big kids / adults to climb on to get extra close! We took advice from previous post and started trail at Bear Lake trailhead and then took Glacier Gorge trailhead to shuttle on way back down —> there was no point in climbing all that way back to Bear Lake since we hiked all of those lakes the day before!

hiking
3 months ago

Since we had already seen all we wanted to near Bear Lake area: (Bear, Nymth, Dream, and Emerald) we hiked to Alberta Falls and then hiked to the Glacier Gorge trail head and then shuttled back to Park and Ride.This saved some uphill walking and was recommended by a ranger.

Waterfall was busy with people and was just OK.

4 months ago

Awesome fall colors and all around gorgeous hike!

hiking
4 months ago

We loved this hike! The colors were brilliant today, the hike is a little steep but so worth it. The falls at the end are spectacular!

hiking
4 months ago

started from bear lake to lake haiyaha to alberta falls to glacier gorge shuttle stop. don’t get me wrong, the hike was beautiful, just didn’t find the falls too impressive. maybe it would have been different if i looped the other way?

hiking
4 months ago

hiking
4 months ago

Good spot! Pretty easy and heavily trafficked but worth seeing the waterfall!

hiking
4 months ago

Loved this hike! It was easy enough for my 10 year old to do. Gorgeous views, several bridges to cross. The Falls were beautiful and changing colors of the fall leaves made it even prettier.

4 months ago

Couldn’t have asked for a nicer hike with my 8 and 11 year old kids. Started at Bear Lake Trailhead so it was .6 mile to the top. At the top there was a great view and a nice place to have a snack and feed the chipmunks.

4 months ago

Favorite short fall hike to bring friends.

4 months ago

Harder than advertised, but worth the climb.

hiking
5 months ago

Amazing trail with plenty of water view and river trail!

5 months ago

So beautiful

5 months ago

Finally found parking at Glacier Gorge Trailhead. Hiked out to Alberta Falls and then headed back to the trail junction and headed to Bear Lake. Walked the .5 mile loop around Bear Lake. Took the shuttle back to Glacier Gorge. Absolutely beautiful hike. Took a lot of pictures. Not a pro hiker. Uphill stretches are tiring but well worth it.

hiking
5 months ago

Very easy beginner trail but so beautiful everyone will want to go. I walked Bear lake trail first then took Alberta Falls Route. A lot of people on weekends.

hiking
5 months ago

I combined this trail and the Emerald lake trail, for totally about 4 hours. The scenes along the trail are very good. Maybe because the elevation here is too large (~3000m), I was very tired although the trail is not hard.

5 months ago

Hike to Alberta Falls was easy and nicely groomed but heavy foot traffic. Attempted trail to Mills Lake but ran out of time. that trail was equally nice. On way back hiked to Bear Lake (all up hill) but very nice.

hiking
5 months ago

I hiked this both from Bear Lake trailhead and Glacier Gorge trailhead. I preferred entering via Glacier Gorge trail because it was a little more scenic. The difference - hiking from Bear Lake trailhead, you'll descend for quite a while until you begin ascending toward the falls. If you start from Glacier Gorge trailhead, you'll be ascending. This starting point will offer you more cardio.
The walk to the falls is lovely and offers you views that span for miles. Gorgeous. ...but even more gorgeous if you pass the falls and hike to either MIlls Lake or Loch Lake. Trust me, it's worth it. :)
The reason why I'm giving it only 3 stars is for a couple reasons - it's populated with tourists who aren't equipped to hike to the falls. Point being, they're a hazard, so watch out. Secondly, although I thought the falls were lovely and the sound soothing, I thought they'd be grander. If you hike on towards one of the lakes further up the trail, you'll continue to parallel the falls, which is nice because that sound of rushing water accompanies you.

hiking
5 months ago

Lovely, easy trail. The falls are just beautiful. Can get busy, but there's plenty of room for everyone to move around and enjoy. Keep going up to Loch Lake Trail, it's more challenging and worth the hike.

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