Blue Lake and Little Blue Lake Via Mitchell Lake Trail

MODERATE 95 reviews
#3 of 110 trails in

Blue Lake and Little Blue Lake Via Mitchell Lake Trail is a 6.3 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Nederland, Colorado that features a lake and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from May until December. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

DISTANCE
6.3 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
1469 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dogs on leash

kid friendly

birding

hiking

nature trips

trail running

walking

horseback riding

forest

lake

river

views

waterfall

wild flowers

wildlife

rocky

snow

There are a couple of Blue Lakes in the Colorado front range. This one is located in the Roosevelt National Forest north of Nederland, near the small community of Ward. It is a fabulous hike in which you will encounter two major lakes (Mitchell and Blue) and several other streams and small ponds. There is abundant wildlife and flowers that offer some of the best photographs. The view of the Continental Divide is also magnificent the closer you get to it. This is listed as a half day hike, but you could do it in 3 hours fairly easily. You will need to pay $10 for a day pass to park at the trailhead.

hiking
9 hours ago

Has anyone done this recently? Want to know the trail conditions

20 days ago

hiking
21 days ago

What a stunning and beautiful hike. Being from Chicago I don't get to see things as beautiful as I did here. All of the lakes, the forest, and most of all the silence. It was one of the most stunning and peaceful experiences in my life. We hiked this back in September '16 and saw four moose out near a lake and walking back up the meadow. We didn't get to finish the trail because of the moose but that's ok. To see them in the wild was enough of a treat. Hoping to do this again in June!

28 days ago

hiking
1 month ago

Went in June last year. Road was closed from Brainard lake, which meant a long asphalt hike to get to the trailhead. We encountered some trouble about a mile in -- we weren't able to find the next blaze, and there weren't a clear set of footprints in the snow to follow, so we had to turn back. Would like to go back later in the year when snow has melted and trail is no longer buried.

1 month ago

1 month ago

It's a pretty hard trail and the high elevation near Blue Lake makes it VERY cold up there. You need great shoes, lots of supplies, and a good jacket. Also windy at the top. We were there early September.

hiking
4 months ago

This was an awesome hike! We are not hikers at all - but try to do a hike on our yearly visits to Colorado. The hike to the first lake was pretty easy and we ended up leaving my father in law there to fish while we went ahead to Blue Lake - it was much harder as we got to the top, but ended up finishing just fine and did some fishing up there too. Even saw three large moose cross the trail about 30 feet in front of us!

hiking
6 months ago

This is a pretty nice, and not difficult, trail. It is easy on the knees both directions, but does get much windier towards the top. Big blue lake at the end is absolutely gorgeous, be sure to spend some time there. It is moderately trafficked, and parking is $10. I would love to go back and try different, longer trail.

6 months ago

hiking
6 months ago

7 months ago

One of my favorite hikes!

7 months ago

7 months ago

Love this trail! Blue lake was gorgeous! I did it today and it was the last day the area was open for this season (if you go after today you can still hike in from the road - I did that this past spring to do lake Isabel- will add about 2-3 miles to the hike though). Recommend this trail for sure. Go early because the trail head fills up if you hit this hike next spring! Add it to your list of places to climb! :-)

7 months ago

hiking
7 months ago

7 months ago

hiking
7 months ago

Beautiful!

hiking
7 months ago

Started out at 10:30 a.m. and had to park at Niwot parking lot because there was no parking at Mitchell or Long Lake trailheads. No biggie, just added a little bit (1/3 mile) to our hike. The weather was gorgeous; sunny and a little chilly. We were glad to have a coat, hat and gloves when we arrived at Blue Lake. The trail is icy and snowy, so proper footwear will help. I would have liked Yak Trax and or poles. The other lakes have ice, but Blue Lake is still blue as ever. Seeing the snow on the peaks was a spectacular sight! Moderate is a good rating, but my guests disagreed. They said it was difficult at times.

hiking
7 months ago