Timberline Falls and Sky Pond Trail

HARD 73 reviews
#24 of 191 trails in

Timberline Falls and Sky Pond Trail is a 9.3 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Estes Park, Colorado that features a lake and is rated as difficult. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, nature trips, and birding and is best used from May until October.

DISTANCE
9.3 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
2,162 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Loop

hiking

nature trips

walking

bird watching

forest

lake

river

views

waterfall

wild flowers

wildlife

rocky

scramble

snow

no dogs

2 months ago

Awesome trail one of the best in RMNP

hiking
3 months ago

Left between 9:30-10am and made it to Sky Pond around 1pm. I was in trail running shoes and had to be careful to keep dry. I made it pretty dry to Sky Pond, but could not avoid the wetness on the way down. The ascent to Lake of Glass was challenging with all the ice, but we persevere! Jogged some of the way back to trailhead (25%) and it was mush from a lot of traffic at lower altitudes. Left parking lot at 3:30. Glorious day!

4 months ago

Amazing!! Good challenge but certainly not impossible. Tied in with lake hiyaya and made a nice 12 mile route. Really windy at sky pond.

hiking
4 months ago

This is a pretty tough trail, lots on inclines, but beautiful views. Definitely bring layers, as it got chilly with increased winds as you ascend. I was able to make it to the top of Timberline Falls, though the ice made it a bit precarious. Decided not to go to Sky Pond because I was concerned about coming back down with the ice.

hiking
5 months ago

We did this last September and I forgot to write a review! We really enjoyed this hike, and braved climbing the falls, even though we were JELLY by the top. This was the first time I've ever climbed anything like that, and it was scary going up; a bit easier coming down. The views at the top were just gorgeous, and we saw lots of little critters!

hiking
5 months ago

My favorite Rocky Mountain National Park hiking destination by far! Exceptional views throughout the hike.

hiking
5 months ago

Beautiful hike, not easy but worth the effort. Adding Emerald lake to this hike is recommended, only 1.6 miles extra. Only very crowded at the end at the climb on the falls.

6 months ago

I made it halfway up Timberline Falls, but after seeing 2 gals above me slip and get hurt climbing the wet boulders I decided to stop and enjoy hiking another day. Kudos to those brave climbers. Still a great challenging hike with amazing views! I will enjoy the photos of those that made it to Sky Pond

6 months ago

Beautiful walk. We did the whole loop and it took almost 6 hours which includes a couple rest stops. We got to the waterfall, but decided not to climb up to Sky Pond. While we could have made it up there, I was just wearing sneakers so I was afraid coming back down would be too slippery. While a little disappointed that I didn’t complete the hike in full... it was still an amazing view from the top.

Long trail. But definitely worth it

7 months ago

Long trail, and tough at the end. I’m a pretty fit 27 year old and the altitude combined with the rock climbing at the end up by the sky pond had me exhausted! The views are incredible and well worth it though, I’d definitely recommend this trail for anyone looking for a long day hike in the mountains. We arrived to the park at noon, parked fairly close to the entrance and caught two buses up to bear lake, the first to the park and ride, and the second up to bear lake as there was no parking up top. The buses were frequent so no complaints there!. It was crowded by Alberta falls and bear lake but around the rest of the trail there were only a few people. Loved it!

Incredible! Added Andrews Glacier and Tarn for an epic half day hike!

hiking
7 months ago

Great suggestion to cover the biggest things to see. That's what we did, but also adding mills lake and emerald lake and andrew lake and black lake. The best (and easiest) addon is mills lake - worth the detour for sure!

hiking
7 months ago

Did this a month ago when there was still snow on the ground - it kicked my butt but the payout was fantastic

hiking
7 months ago

This is a classic RMNP hike and it shows with the hordes of hikers on the trail. Pretty easy hike till the rock stairs right before Timberland Falls. The rock scramble up to the top of the falls is only difficult by the numerous people trying come down and climb up, but once up the views are well worth it. If you don’t like a crowd, I’d recommend a very early weekday morning trip.

hiking
7 months ago

Still some spots with snow but regular hiking shoes are fine. Pretty easy hike until you get to the timberline falls, then you have to do some crawling / bouldering up rocks. Amazing views. Worth the distance.

hiking
Saturday, January 20, 2018

One of my fav spots in the park. Went last Wednesday 01-17-18 got away without snowshoes until about 3/4 way to Timberline falls then popped them on. Some spots seemed dangerous and deep in steep with snowshoes, but were fun because of that (especially a whole mountain of lovely huge icicles.) Walked the frozen Loch and made it to frozen Timberline Falls but did not attempt to climb up ice to Lake of Glass as others that tried before me told me it was too dangerous so I did not attempt. Beautiful in summer but still need to see winter version.

hiking
Sunday, January 07, 2018

one of the most amazing hikes I've ever been on! lots of elevation change so be prepared for that and go slow if need be. temperature changes throughout and completely gorgeous the entire way. afternoon thunderstorms are extremely common and we got caught in one on the way back down. kind of scary for a bit but it didn't last long and we were back to slower sight seeing shortly afterward. definitely a hike I'd do again!

hiking
Friday, September 29, 2017

Incredible, the whole hike was just one beautiful turn after another. As others have said, the last stint up to sky lake is a bit tough. prepare to rock scramble a little, and then head up a steep grade with a bit of a waterfall beside you. Have good boots, and a pole to help with that part. Tons of wildlife, the marmots were especially active.

Tuesday, September 05, 2017

Very beautiful hike. It does get difficult as you get towards the top but very much worth it!

hiking
Tuesday, September 05, 2017

Great hike, particularly at the end. Sky Pond is well worth the climb at the end.

Sunday, September 03, 2017

Awesome hike! Countless wildlife and wildflowers. You hike through several types of environments with forest, meadow, cliffs, waterfalls, river, lakes and more. Loved this hike!

hiking
Sunday, September 03, 2017

This trail is beautiful! Does have a good tough incline towards the lake, with a short rock climb at the falls to get to sky pond. Highly recommend though, pretty amazing views!!

Friday, July 21, 2017

One of the most amazing experiences ever. Be prepared to climb a waterfall.

Saturday, July 08, 2017

A lot of fun. Pretty casual until you get to the snow. Have to scale if you want to get to the two lakes at the end of the trail. Really fun with amazing views

Monday, June 19, 2017

We did not head up past the loch but the rest of this loop was great. Few key things from this today:
-we parked down at glacier (the parking lot before bear lake) and started at that trail head early around 7, hardly anyone on the trail.
-trail is clear up past Alberta falls but you quickly realize you should have brought spikes for the rest of the trail.
-past the loch is apparently really sketchy without poles and spikes (which is why we didn't go that far) so make sure you plan ahead.
-the trail from the loch to lake haiyaha switches from mud to 3ft of snow and it's challenging. Doable, but challenging. Again, hardly anyone on the trail so you have time to slide around and get up to the lake.
-the trail from haiyaha to dream lake was garbage the last mile. The trail is completely covered in 4+ ft of snow and was impossible to do at the last switch back. We sort of headed down south the side and finally found the next part of the trail to be met with more snow pack. Slip 'n slide method seemed to work for me at this point.
-the trail from dream lake up to emerald is snow mush and muddy, makes it a little interesting to do with how many people use that trail but very doable without poles or spikes. We stopped for lunch at emerald lake which is partially still frozen.

All around still an awesome trail loop and great views, just be ready to roll around in the snow a bit. We still did 9 miles without going past the loch and had a great time, I included pics of the snow situation above :)

hiking
Thursday, June 15, 2017

My group had a hard time finding the trail in the snow past the Loch. We had to turn back due to thunderstorm/lightning. The Loch was beautiful! We were close but did not quite reach the falls. I guess we will try again next time! We definitely made good use of microspikes/yaktrax and hiking poles on this trail in early June.

Thursday, June 08, 2017

I stopped here to admire the falls on the way to Sky Pond trail. Untouched beauty!

Saturday, September 17, 2016

Amazing! got to the parking lot at 530am... it was half way full. AMAZING hike! watch out for extreme weather changes

hiking
Saturday, September 03, 2016

Fantastic half-day hike in Rocky Mt. National Park. Start early, saw hundreds (not exaggerated) of people heading up as I was heading down. I included Emerald Lake Trail and hit that one first, than Lake Haiyaha , The Loch, Lake of Glass, and the last was Sky Pond. Lots of wildlife and people on this one, it is a stunna.

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