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

Steady climb. The views half-way up exceeded the actual lake view, but it was a nice hike with some icy stairs.

Remnants of the old trail are still visible for 90% of the hike. It’s closer to a hard than moderate by my estimation. Climbing starts from step 1 and relents very little. But, it was a lovely hike without seeing another soul (human). We did watch Steller’s Jays, hawks and lots of other wildlife scurry about. The views are grand.

Enjoyable shortish day hike. Lake is SMALL. Views back over Estes Park and of RMNP and great!

Nice, easy and peaceful trail along the Tompson River. We didn't make it as far in as I would have liked due to time, but I definitely plan on returning

hiking
15 days ago

Easy out and back hike that takes about 2-3 hours. Lots of shaded areas and stairs. Paul Bunyan’s boot can be found along the way. The lake itself is more like a dirty pond. Recommend going early to avoid the traffic and if you’re able to climb up a bit you can get a spectacular view on calm mornings.

hiking
16 days ago

65 y.o. husband and I took our chubby selves up this hill today. it was fairly hard for us, coming from flatter land and having spent NO time on the stairmaster. the views we're beautiful and gem lake was pretty ( though in Minnesota we have "real" lakes and this would be a large puddle). we like rocks and geology so enjoyed the entire walk. trail was busy though nothing compared to Zion, Bryce, Moab, etc. the sprinkling of Aspen gold was also gorgeous.

16 days ago

The whole family loves it! Great for kids, the views are gorgeous from every point. No dogs, no strollers, but lots of people in the Fall time for Aspens!

hiking
17 days ago

This was a great, short hike with lots of shade. I would definitely recommend hiking early in the morning to avoid the crowds. The fall foliage was so beautiful on the way up to the lake!

Journey better than the destination. Many well shaded areas with lots of spattered rock formations throughout the trail. Nice fall foilage/aspens midway to 2/3rds up. Then quite a few big steps to final lake/pond. Yes the pond is small, but it has a neat wall of rock around it. Also several openings between trees and rocks with nice views below.

hiking
21 days ago

Quick and easy hike for the experienced. It is a lot of uphill with loose pebbles so watch your step. Chipmunks by the lake will steal your food if you’re not looking or you might pick up a hitchhiker in your pack if it’s open. Overall it’s a great heart-rate starter for some of the harder hikes in the area.

Good with the kids.

hiking
26 days ago

The trail was well marked most of the way, there’s a bathroom about halfway to gem lake. Great scenery and wildlife on the hike up. Gem lake is more like a small lake/pond, the mountains reflected in the water and we thought it was pretty up there. Lots of brave chipmunks coming right up to you once at gem lake too! We thought it was a good hike with nice views on the way up. I would recommend hiking shoes/boots for this trail.

Not sure why the high rating on this trail. Nothing spectacular. Gem lake is really more like disappointing dirty swamp

29 days ago

Not a difficult trail but a beautiful end point!

30 days ago

Not a gem in our opinion. More like a small pond and wonder who named it?

hiking
1 month ago

It was crowded and I don’t know if I would even call that a Pond! Most definitely not a lake. But there were some great views and it was a decent climb.

hiking
1 month ago

hiking
1 month ago

The trail was well marked in most areas but a few times got a little confusing. I wouldn't really call it a lake, but it's more of a large muddy pond. the hike up was beautiful and there were great places to stop and take pictures and look around. there were lots of very steep steps.

Lots of stairs at the end that got the best of me, but pretty shaded most of the way, a compost toilet at the top which was very much needed, some decent bouldering opportunities along the way if you’re into that, and once you’re at the top: words can’t describe the tranquil beauty of Gem Lake. Perfect end to a moderately challenging hike. So worth it!!!

Pretty steep steps at the end! Lots of shade on the trail which is nice.

Absolutely beautiful and worth the sweat and just a lil soreness..(i went in as an amateur lol) but would definitely do it again

on Gem Lake Trail

hiking
1 month ago

Great trail. Lots of fantastic views of Estes, RMNP and Longs Peak. Parking was bad and there was a mass of humanity at the trailhead. The hike up wasn't what I expected at all. The trail is a steady uphill climb the entire way to the 'lake' with a few short sections of more even terrain. I would rate it as moderate to moderate/difficult in places. Towards the end of the trail, footing becomes precarious on large boulder sized steps and can be a bit steep in several sections. Little ones may have a hard time traversing the trail in these spots. I highly suggest wearing good shoes or boots on the way up and switching to water shoes or flip-flops once you reach the 'lake'. The lake is more of a pond. Very beautiful with a lovely mirror effect as it is somewhat sheltered from the wind. Beautiful Dragon Flies and fun Ground Squirrels all over the place. (maybe a little too friendly as they were actually stealing food from folks and jumping on one girl seated on the ground). Be bear aware. There was a Black Bear spotted on the trail earlier in the day. Please pack it in and pack it out while on the trail. We saw a few folks walk off after enjoying their picnics, not bothering to pick-up all of their trash. The leaves are changing! Colorado Gold season! WE DID NOT PAY FOR PARKING. I am not sure why it says there is a $10.00 parking fee, but we saw no such thing.

hiking
1 month ago

even though i found the lake to be a bit lackluster at the end, the hike itself was beautiful throughout. took ~2.5 hrs. and actually ended up being one of my favorite hikes ever (the leaves started to turn yellow, sooo pretty). this being my kickoff hike makes me really excited to see what the other rmnp trails have in store!!

hiking
1 month ago

not recommended. if you don't like first quarter mile you won't like trail because it's about the same. No views or panoramas at all. Quite gloomy and closed in the whole way. Main reason to do this trail would be to link to Lost Lake at end of this trail but that's another 4.4 miles or to join Boundary Trail back to Cows Creek but best of luck doing that one! Just done Lawn Lake which is better in every respect. Try that one first

backpacking
1 month ago

found a perfect spot to hang a hammock

hiking
1 month ago

Great trail. Our group actually went up to Lost Lake and a day trip to the glacier near Lake Louise. Great times.

hiking
1 month ago

Started early, very few people on the trail. Steady incline up but definitely manageable. Beautiful views the entire time and the lake at the top is definitely small but very cute as well. Very much worth the climb. Also, on the way down we followed a group of elk down the trail from a safe distance behind!

hiking
1 month ago

Beautiful hike with river, meadows and Mountain views with very few other hikers

hiking
1 month ago

It was a little difficult at the top but the views were worth it! It was busy, lots of people on the trails

hiking
1 month ago

My wife and I did this and it really is a leg burner but the reward was a peaceful pond surrounded by rock walls. BEAUTIFUL! So worth the exercise.

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