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Forest Lakes Trail is a 6.8 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Rollinsville, Colorado that features a lake and is rated as difficult. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from May until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Distance: 6.8 miles Elevation Gain: 1,541 feet Route Type: Out & Back

dogs on leash

fishing

hiking

nature trips

snowshoeing

walking

forest

lake

river

waterfall

wild flowers

wildlife

bridge out

rocky

From Nederland, travel south for 4.5 miles on Colorado Highway 119 to Rollinsville. Turn west onto the gravel Gilpin County Road 16 and continue eight miles to the Moffat Tunnel. A large parking area is available at the East Portal Trailhead.

hiking
bugs
muddy
snow
3 days ago

If you need a hike to get your heart pumping this is it! Pretty steep for a good amount of the hike. Definitely muddy in spots. Once you reach the top there’s a small snowfield you need to cross to get to the lake. A lot of bugs at the lake, not so much on the hike up, but definitely recommend big spray if you’re going to hangout at the lake for a bit. Did the hike on 4th of July and had minimal hikers doing the same. About 3/4 of them wore a mask too. I think more people were going to Crater Lake than Forest Lake.

hiking
3 days ago

Steady and steep the whole way. Bring bug spray. The lake has a lot of mosquitoes.

hiking
blowdown
rocky
11 days ago

hiking
muddy
snow
15 days ago

GREAT Hike. Super steep; it's a bit like hiking up a washed-out gully the closer you get to the lake. Lots of snowfields within one mile of the lake and lots of post-holing as we hiked through them. Be careful as you approach the lake as the trail seems to end just before you arrive.

hiking
24 days ago

Great hike! There’s a lot of mud starting out and a good amount of deep snow near the lake. Waterproof high ankled boots would be recommended. Thankful I brought extra socks! Most of the deep snow is packed and easy to walk on but you’ll get the occasional soft spots and sink down knee deep into snow. We started the hike at 7:30 and didn’t see many people on the way up but lots of people on the way back down.

hiking
snow
25 days ago

Great and fun trail! Got there early at 6:30am and saw 2 people and then a few camping at the lake. Lots more people when I was heading back down. Still parking available at 9:45am but you’ll see a lot of people on the trail The last 8 miles driving to the trail is a dirt road with rocks, easy to drive on, just annoying. Still quite a bit of snow at the top, no crampons needed but would recommend waterproof boots

hiking
snow
25 days ago

Stopped for 15 mins. & forgot to stop for 10 mins. Snowy and melting so muddy

hiking
snow
1 month ago

Wet conditions and still quite a bit of snow near the lake. Probably needs at least a couple more weeks to melt. Great hike!

hiking
1 month ago

Road to Moffat Tunnel open to all as of 6/1/2020.

hiking
1 month ago

Trailheads and access roads in Gilpin County have been under restricted access for some time. Gilpin County Sheriff's Dept document PHO-20-7 with these closures says that they would be in effect until last Friday evening. https://1311b2d6-a013-78c4-1fca-a01bfd3a0b6e.filesusr.com/ugd/c33473_24bc9845ab6c4f089b3cfa4a31a94519.pdf This has not been updated to this morning (June 1st). Does anyone know of the status of trailhead access at East Portal?

3 months ago

AS OF 4/6 - DUE TO COVID-19 ACCESS TO ALL OF E PORTAL RD/COUNTY RD 16 (IMMEDIATELY OFF HWY 119) IS RESTRICTED TO GILPIN COUNTY RESIDENTS ONLY. All trailheads off that road (including 9 others at East Portal) are closed to non-residents. I did not see the markings on the truck, but either Sheriff or Parks and Wildlife are monitoring access to the road.

hiking
snow
4 months ago

hiking
snow
4 months ago

WHOA! Powder to our hips and waist in places! FUNtastic hike today. The lake was covered in snow, yet, it was glorious! Put this hike on your list!

hiking
5 months ago

Hiked to Forest Lake with micro spikes and snow shoes. Lots of skiers. Trail was extremely packed the whole way.

hiking
snow
5 months ago

Great snow hike! Opted not to bring snowshoes which limited our distance; started to posthole about 2.5 miles in. Fresh powder on the ground from last night and some light snow falling most of the morning. Will be back!

hiking
snow
5 months ago

Hiked on 1/20/20. Lost the trail about a mile away from the lake but we back tracked and found it eventually. Used micro spikes for most of the way and then put snowshoes on about the last half mile. The lake is covered in about 1-2 feet of snow so sadly could not alpine skate. But it was still beautiful!

snowshoeing
snow
6 months ago

Used spikes from the trailhead up until shortly after the bridge at ~2 miles. From there we used snowshoes up to the first lake, using the winter trail that runs roughly parallel to the marked trail on this map. Fabulous view at the lake. Logged in a total of 6.5 miles 1400' elevation gain, so an excellent high-elevation workout as well.

recorded Recording - Jan 04, 2:54 PM

snow
6 months ago

hiking
snow
6 months ago

A nice trail in the winter. Plenty of other travelers which makes the trail easy to follow. We made it from the parking lot to the junction with micro spikes. But we needed our snowshoes once we started up Forest Lake Trail. We went as far as the upper meadow which is about 2 miles or so from the parking lot. Lots of snow and very beautiful! If you like to hike in the snow, do this hike! Friday, 12/20/19

hiking
snow
7 months ago

Beautiful trail, but I wouldn’t classify this as difficult relative to other difficult trails in this wilderness area and Indian Peaks wilderness. The all-trails route to the lake has not been traveled this winter so you will be following a slightly different route. Snow packed at the bottom, but micro spikes were helpful at the bottom and I highly recommend snowshoes for the upper portion or you will be post holing for the last 3/4 mile.

hiking
8 months ago

beautiful trail, all bridges were intact.

hiking
8 months ago

Don’t go on this trail. Bridges have fallen down... we went on the Crater Lakes trail which was lovely

hiking
rocky
9 months ago

hiking
9 months ago

BEAUTIFUL hike! AllTrails lists this as 6.8 mile hike but if you go to the second lake (which is absolutely worth it!) the hike is about 8+ miles in total. It was also VERY windy in the morning when we got there around 9 am.

hiking
9 months ago

The first bridge has been replaced.

hiking
10 months ago

Great hike with stunning views! Signs are posted saying that the trail conditions may not be passable due to washed out bridges. However, the water is low enough that there is no issue. Make sure to make it up to the second lake; it's about 0.5 miles past the first lake and is definitely worth it!

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