East Inlet Trail to Spirit Lake [CLOSED]

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Rocky Mountain National Park

East Inlet Trail to Spirit Lake is a 14.4 mile lightly trafficked out and back trail located near Grand Lake, Colorado that features a lake. The trail is rated as difficult and offers a number of activity options. Horses are also able to use this trail.

Distance: 14.4 miles Elevation Gain: 2,368 feet Route Type: Out & Back

camping

fishing

hiking

horseback riding

nature trips

snowshoeing

running

forest

lake

river

views

waterfall

wild flowers

wildlife

closed

no dogs

It has been reported this trail has a temporary closure due to COVID-19. Please see the park's website for up to date information.

hiking
3 days ago

Lots of beautiful waterfalls along the river. We only make it to the first lake, Lone Pine. The trail isn’t visible past that due to snow. We encountered a few short stretches of snow to Lone Pine but easily traversed in only hiking boots.

10/10 highly recommend going to solitude. Worth the trek.

hiking
8 months ago

Parking lot was crowded, but most turn around after the falls. Didn’t see any one after the first lake. The second lake has a great view west on a small beach. If you decide to try to get to the fifth lake, follow the river! It’s easy to get lost as the trail disappears mostly. Don’t be surprised if you see animals on the trail! I saw three elk and two moose that were a little too close for comfort... overall, a great hike with great views and enough of an incline to get your heart rate going without being too crazy.

hiking
8 months ago

Very underrated, beautiful, lake!

hiking
rocky
10 months ago

Fantastic but long trail! The meadow views are my favorite. We even saw a moose in the distance then saw her closer as we started to hit the incline. Loved the Forrest feeling you get at times. You def go through different ecosystems. Some areas are rocky. This hike is well worth it but not for the weary. It is tough and long. Lone Pine Lake is great and even saw a deer there but Lake Verna was my favorite. Great peak views of Spirit Lake. Once you get to Verna, spirit isn’t far at all! There are however two more lakes past spirit called fourth and fifth lakes that we didn’t make it to. Spirit lake had great views of peaks and that was enough for us. The entire thing took us 8 hrs. We stopped to take pictures of that moose for way too long, then stopped and took our sweet time at each lake. 5hrs to Spirit and 3hrs to get back. We started at 0900 and there was plenty of parking. Take some bug spray, a rain jacket, and sunscreen. Parts are shaded though! Would def do again.

snowshoeing
snow
Sun Feb 10 2019

This trail was great! In the winter, it’s slow going though after about 4 miles in. Cell service the whole way so you can use this app. Clear path to follow at least for the first 6 miles. If you’re snowshoeing, you can probably carry them for a few miles as the first bit is pretty travelled and packed. Amazing views of Mount Craig and Grand Lake below. Fun meadows full of snow to play in. Get there at sun up if you ant any chance of making it to the lakes and back before dark.

Fri Aug 10 2018

Go to 5th lake. Its well worth it. Trail kinda disappears but its pretty obvious still.

Thu Aug 09 2018

Amazing views, beautiful lakes and low traffic after leaving the Adams Falls area. Difficult hike with many steps. But we’ll worth the trek!!

Mon May 28 2018

Did this trail yesterday (5.27) up to lake verna. Had tons of family traffic up to the inlet, but after that I saw maybe 10 people all day. The trail winds it’s way up to the lakes but has a gorgeous river that parallels the trail the majority of the way up, making it impossible for you to run out of water. Lone Pine Lake is where you start seeing some snow on the ground, and you sort of have to wade here and there through previous post holes, so I would definitely recommend waterproof boots until early June. First time doing the inlet trail, won’t be the last.

hiking
Thu Aug 24 2017

Just a few blocks away from Main Street of Grand Lake the East Inlet Trailhead offers such a diversity of different areas along the trail that go high up into the alpine. With a short hike down the trail you will see Adams Falls so if your just looking to stretch the legs this is a good spot right on the edge of town. If your looking to go the full yard be prepared for gorgeous open valleys with streams running through, beautiful rock formations, lots of wild flowers and signs of wildlife, and five amazing lakes before you reach your way to the the boulder field to go up to the pass. I did this hike on 7/15/16 with a late start of around 1130am i managed to log 19.8 miles round trip returning to the car shortly after dark, this is still to date one of my personal favorites because there wasn’t much foot traffic after the first couple miles and you really do get the whole experience of what this area has to offer being as beautiful as it is. The trail is pretty mellow not a whole lot of steep uphill other then a few sections just a very long day of steady hiking if your looking to go the distance. Follow me on Instagram for more mountain photography @Alex.Newkirk

hiking
Wed Aug 09 2017

This hike to Spirit lake is the entrance to another world. Rugged mountains to the south of Lake Verna and Spirit as well as beautifully scenic views that cannot be captured by the English language. Love this trail as it is hard pretty and once there you never want to leave. I did this round trip 16 mile in a day and none worse for the ware.

Thu Jul 13 2017

Beautiful spot near Grand Lake to hike. We did 2.8 miles out and then back in just a couple of hours. We saw a moose with her two young ones, and the wildflowers were stunning. Lots of places to pull off and eat or chat and take in the views. Lots of people in July, but very worth the trip.

hiking
Tue Oct 04 2016

Beautiful hike with varied terrain. Like someone else mentioned, the trail from Lake Verna to Spirit Lake is unimproved. But it's a very short distance between the two lakes, so it's worth it. We hiked this today, October 3, and ended up seeing two seasons. Started the hike in the autumn, ended in the winter. With all high alpine environments, bring layers and be prepared. This took us about 9 hours, going more slowly on the way back due to an injury.

hiking
Thu Aug 18 2016

Outstanding 16 mile round trip hike to Spirit Lake. Varied terrain, beautiful alpine lakes and well-maintained trail.

snowshoeing
Fri Apr 15 2016

Mid April 2016--- I honestly cannot give a complete and updated review because health issues forced me to leave only after a half-day in.... Here is what you need to know about this trail though: I came at absolutely the worst time for snowshoeing. 1. The first 1-2 miles are compact ice from traffic and snow melt. Ice spikes/stabil-ICERs were advised to me and I would also pass on this advice to anyone else. 2. After that the actual snow was horrible! Even with appropriately sized snowshoes; you fill fall through the snow all the way to the ground. With snow coverage at sometimes 2-3 feet can mean that you will be sucking and dredging with every step. I attributed this due to the mid 50s daytime temperatures but because this trail is in a valley there will still be a lot of snow...But most of it warm snow that is mostly melted underneath. 3. Also during my trip the trail itself had 7 or more downed trees and I really only made it in about 2 or so miles before I left. Didn't even reach the first lake *sad face*. The downed trees cover the trail and with a heavy pack there is tons of bending under them to get through or precariously trying to climb over them. This would have been a beautiful trail otherwise and despite Grand Lake itself being completely frozen over, the creek was flowing in most parts. Adams falls had plenty of snow but was not frozen over like I was hoping.

Thu Oct 01 2015

One of the best hikes

Sat Jun 27 2015

I didn't get to hike it because I brought my dogs. This app indicated docs were allowed so beware. Bummer as it looks like a good one.

hiking
Thu Aug 15 2013

After lake Verna the trail becomes unimproved and is hard to follow but the view is well worth the trip. There are 2 lakes beyond that, I still have not made it to. Long hike for one day. Took about 7 hours.

hiking
7 months ago

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8 months ago

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8 months ago

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9 months ago

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10 months ago

hiking
Sat Aug 18 2018

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Sat Jun 09 2018

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