Explore the most popular camping trails near Allenspark with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

As others have mentioned, this is a beautiful trail. We started at 10am and thought that to be a late start, parking lot was about half full, and we were between several groups. On our return at 1pm (we only went 3 mi in/out), there was a gaggle of humans parading onto the trail. Lots of fly fishers trying their luck on the adjacent river, which really was kind of pathetic - as the trout were no bigger than 6" and should've been left undisturbed.

Pro-tip: start *early*, i.e. 8am anytime between June and Labor Day.

Beautiful. 14 miles RT to lake #1. Last 2.2 miles are the only really steep section. Maybe add .8 to 1 mile to total if going to lake #2.

hiking
16 days ago

Hiked Saturday, 8/4- got there at 12 and there were a few open parking spots. Fairly strenuous, mostly uphill. I clocked it at closer to a little over 9 miles total. The lake is crystal clear and huge. Very cool to see the sand too. I give this 3 stars because, for me, it didn’t compare to many other hikes I’ve done in this area (especially for the effort). Glad I did it but don’t necessarily feel the need to repeat this one.

hiking
20 days ago

Nice wooded, shady trail with a beautiful lake at the end! Arrived at about 7:45 on Tuesday morning and there wasn’t much parking available because people go up and camp overnight. 4.5 miles to the lake wasn’t bad, and a lot of it was fairly flat. Lots of ripe blueberries along the top half of the trail! Lake was mostly quiet when I arrived around 9:30, but started to get busy by 10:30. Many nice campsites and pretty area to explore around the lake. Would do again!

hiking
21 days ago

While Thunder Lake itself is a serene beautiful spot, getting there isn't that much fun. Tons of loose rocks underfoot and not a flower in sight makes this a boring trail. Didn't really enjoy much after Ouzel Falls to be frank.

Absolutely amazing trail. We backpacked in to Slickrock campground. This was approximately 6.5 miles in. It took us 30 minutes to hike to Lake Verna the next morning. We swam in the river along the trail, in Lone Pine lake, and in Lake Verna. Do yourself a favor and jump right on in to the glacier water. It is well worth your time :). We even saw a moose!

hiking
28 days ago

Excellent hike. I would put this on the more moderate side. The incline is pretty gradual a lot of the time, with only a few steeper sections. Great views of Wild Basin along the way, as well as the usual suspects (Longs, Meeker, Copland, etc.). We did this as our Plan B hike on a rainy day, as it's all under tree cover. Highly recommend for a rainy or sunny day!

hiking
28 days ago

You will see a lot of lists with "the best hikes in RMNP" and their are a ton of them. This one goes on the list. Steady climb for four and half miles with a few steep spots. A few good views of the Wild Basin along the way. The lake and surrounding area is spectacular. Next time I will plan to spend a lot more time on the sandy beach. Although the parking lots was very full we did not see a ton of people on the trail. Get there early if you want to park in the lot close to the trailhead. Another great RMNP hike to add to your list.

Great day hike with incredible views at the top!

Hit East Inlet at 8:30 on a Sunday morning (7/8). There were only a few cars in the lot and there appears to be plenty of parking. In the first 30-40 minutes I spotted two moose in the meadow area. A few families walking through that area, but at about 2.5 miles in, there were only a few others. A lot of rocky incline enroute to Lone Pine, nothing too bad, well marked. I ate lunch at Lone Pine, for the first 10-15 minutes I was the only person there. Two other groups trickled in. I continued on to Verna, which was steep and rocky but again nothing too difficult - the wildflowers were amazing up there. So much color. On the way back down I passed a moose that was very close to the trail, he didn't seem too happy I was there but I passed without incident. After reading another comment, since I was hiking alone I did wear a bear bell and brought spray just in case. A lot of birds, small animals and moose. Long trail, but doable for a day hike. I would love to have had time to get to Spirit and camp out.

hiking
1 month ago

Beautiful lake!

1 month ago

Great hiking.

Beautiful hike along the river! Not crazy busy which was nice. Large waterfall about 1.5 miles in that you can hike directly up to off to the side. The lake is stunning, but don’t plan on swimming without a wet suit. More like 14 miles round trip...mild elevation gain which made it totally doable. Have a rad hike!

hiking
1 month ago

I would rate this trail as easy-moderate, not hard. It was only a little rocky and steep in a couple of places through the backcountry sites. The rest was flat or gradual incline. Two hours up, 1.5 hours down. It's more like 12 miles RT as opposed to 11 miles.

The trail through the forest was quiet and beautiful. I started at 7:30 AM and saw almost no other people until I was coming down the trail. I had the lake completely to myself for the entire hour and a half that I sat there. Definitely take the route shown on AllTrails (through the backcountry sites)--it cuts a mile off each way (as opposed to going past Calypso Cascades and Ouzel Falls, unless you want to see those!) so that it's 12 miles RT instead of 14.

This was honestly one of my favorite hikes. I can understand why it is rated as hard, as the trail has plently of uphill, downhill, you name it. but it's absolutely beautiful. You are in mostly forest and right now its very green with wildflowers along the way, as well as streams. I had the pleasure of seeing some wildlife on the day I went! The lake is remarkable with the sand around it, clear waters! Would do again. Yes, it is in RMNP so it is good to be reminded you will have to pay for parking. I went in the afternoon in the middle of the week wasn't busy for me.

great camping, and a challenging hike!

Great, well maintained trail with a beautiful, large lake with arkose sand beaches as a payout. I found this trail to be tame and very doable in a morning (8-12).

Beautiful moderate hike. Certainly a long one. Bring lots of water and snacks. Traverse through marshy meadows, forest, by rivers, past pristine lakes. Absolutely lovely!!

backpacking
2 months ago

Trip dates:: 6/15-17. You want to enjoy lakes in close proximity to each other? Do this hike. We enjoyed a two night three days backpacking trip here. Stayed at the Solitaire campground. From here all the lakes from Verna lake n on is accessible all the way to Fifth Lake which is the very last lake on the map. Its marshy and about a foot deep in but if u don’t mInd then by all means head up towards the Fifth Lake- it’s gorgeous!! Lots of downed trees and the trail is not maintained after Verna Lake and you will see a sign that will indicate that. Lots of water and gushing falls. Bonus: a few actual man made steps makes the uphill hike a beautiful photo op. Lots of vista points as well. Very busy trail head but thins out and it’s just you and the wild as you go higher. A bear crossed our path on the way out. Never happened to us in our 12+ years of backpacking. Reminder that this is CO and is there’s very much “wild” left in the wilderness.

hiking
2 months ago

This was such a beautiful trail. We went yesterday 6/16 and had a great time. I do have to say almost 9 miles is difficult especially if you are just getting into it. It is a lot longer and more difficult than I expected it to be. The last stretch of incline before the lake can be brutal. But the view was sooooo worth it. I would absolutely recommend this just make sure you take your time and be careful on the slippery rocks if it rains like it did with us. I would ease on the side of caution if you aren’t experienced . This was only the second trail I have done since trying to get into hiking this summer and I could hardly walk last night. But I did it! It is possible and the view is totally worth it.

I really enjoyed this hike and Lake Verna did not disappoint, but it was long! This was the longest day hike I have attempted (I hike very slowly...it took me 5 hours to get there...) and while I would have enjoyed seeing Spirit Lake, I didn't have it in me. Next time I should backpack and stay at one of the backcountry sites and split it up. What I liked about this hike was the variety of terrain: meadow, cliffs, aspens, pine forests and so many waterfalls! Lone Pine Lake was not that exciting, but Lake Verna was beautiful.

My friends and I just did a 4 day backpacking trip, June 6th through the 9th. I absolutely loved this trail, being a Texan who has never hiked in any elevation or on trails with any substantial elevation gain this was a difficult trail for us. We averaged four miles a day but didn’t push ourselves too hard. First night was an pine ridge, we then hiked to finch lake where we stayed for two nights and day hiked to pear lake on the third day. The prepared camp sites at both pine ridge and finch lake were nice and clean. Pear lake was gorgeous, a lot more snow than I was expecting. It’s very well marked as well. I would definitely hike this trail again. It’s a great beginner multi day backpacking trail.

hiking
2 months ago

June 9: Great hike. Leave early to beat the parking lot crowd. Moderate but constant climb to the lake. Good workout!

hiking
2 months ago

June 2: Please note before you head for this trail: parking at the trailhead is very limited (maybe 20 spots) and you’ll need to pay (or show a valid park pass) to get into Rocky Mtn NP. (The trailhead is next to the entrance station, which may be manned depending on time of day and time of year of your visit.) There is additional parking a little further inside the park, and an outhouse at the trailhead. That said, this is an awesome hike! A deceptively difficult yet gorgeous hike up and along a forested ridgeline of ponderosa, lodgepole, aspen and fir. Lots of views of the valley in the first mile as you climb. A couple stream crossings (with log bridges) and some lovely stream side views in the middle miles. The last mile has some steeper sections that are rocky (big steps up over small boulders), but it’s worth it. A couple little patches of packed old snow still there at the top but won’t hinder you at all in regular hiking footwear. The lake is stunning; medium-grained granite sand is great for lounging. Views all around, and an especially spectacular view of Longs Peak. Will definitely hike again, and plan to spend more time exploring and enjoying the lake! (I gave only four stars because this trail felt a little harder than I expected based on reviews and didn’t have a lot of mountain views in the middle, but it was definitely a fantastic hike!)

hiking
2 months ago

Great hike and a little challenging. Some snow still present but was not an issue. The lake is amazing and is worth the hike!

A nice hike to the Sandbeach Lake. Mostly all up and seldom not. Not an easy trail and difficult either.....but easy does it. Go slow and make it easy for you to not get tired if you are not an athlete. I did this trail on 27th May and had fun. Lake Beach is nice.

hiking
2 months ago

Got a late start on this amazing trail 2 days ago so we were coming back down after dark. Snow still in the trees around 10,000ft but NO traction or snowshoes required, just be cautious of post-holing through. I'd say The last quarter mile or less is snow covered. The lake (and beach) is completely melted and provides an absolutely stunning mountain lake. The rest of the trail is relatively uneventful (still beautiful) with some views of the canyon, rocky outcropings, and alpine woods. Camping by permit only! I'll be returning with a permit ASAP. Enjoy

backpacking
2 months ago

We did a two nighter out to Thunder Lake and it was worth the journey to see the lake! The hike up most of the way is easy going but can get very rocky in spots, especially between the Pine And St Vrain camp spots. Once we were about 1.5 miles out there were pretty huge snow mounds dotting the trail and once you get to a bridge the trail completely is lost to the snow. It was pretty easy to post hole out there too. There were quite a few tracks but none of them were the same as our map or gps. Once you get there it is quite the view and super quiet.

hiking
2 months ago

Beautiful hike in the trees with nice vistas to the south and south east early in the hike and north to Longs Peak at the end. Made it to the parking lot about 6:15 am and didn’t see anyone on the trail until I was heading back from the lake. Looong line to get into Wild Basin by the time I got back about 10:45. Last tenth of a mile to the lake is still 2+ feet of snow, and it’s starting to soften.

hiking
2 months ago

Went yesterday. Fitbit said it was 5 miles to get there. No snow until the last 3/4 miles. Not much of it and snow is not a factor for the hike, you can just walk along the side of the snow. Lake is mostly all thawed out and only a couple snow spots on the "beach" Amazing hike. Amazing lake. One of the best mountain lakes.

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