Explore the most popular walking 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.

Great hike. Decently steep towards the top before the lake but gem lake is beautiful. Went further to balanced rock which was an 8 mile round trip and had some good views along the way. Would hike again!!

Part of the RMNP but start outside of park. Started at donut shop on the way to trail. Great donuts but made hiking a little tougher.

This hike is different than being in the RMNP, the rocks-boulder different shapes and sizes. Made for numerous little caves, which the 2 and 5 year old loved.

On the way up, get some good views of Estes park.

There is a actual toilet near the top. My 5 yr old loved this!!

Lake is very ok. Also leaches in the lake, so don't get all the way in. But plenty of exploring and climbing near the lake for the kids.

Did this hike with wife and kids (2 and 5). 5 yr old hiked off and on.

Was a pretty good workout for this Nebraska boy, but enjoyed the views and the little rain shower. Recommend the hike overall!

This trail no longer exists.

is a hard trail, and the lake is not to awesome like the Snow Lake, is to long way!!

13 days ago

Steep climb for a nice, but not spectacular, lake. I am glad I did it but do not need to do it again.

This hike was pretty beautiful. The hike is all uphill until you get to the lake. The hike is Rocky and has lose rocks, so good grippy shoes would be ideal for the hike back. Hike has many many stairs but doable, many kids on this trail. At the lake there are Chipmunks that will crawl on you for food ❤. There are bathrooms at the trail head and a toilet way up in the mountain almost getting to the lake. No parking fee.

14 days ago

Gorgeous trail! Lush + green most of the way with abundant, tall wildflowers, even moss and ferns. Shaded. Follows the creek most the way. Rocky in spots, but mostly soft trail. 10 campsites along trail. Hummingbirds, woodpeckers, trout + bear scrapings. Ample parking @ trailhead. Bring bug repellent -- sneaky biting flies today (probably from nearby stables). You will see damage from big flood a few years back, but all bridges are rebuilt for the 3-4 creek crossings.

I had a good hike...it was pretty steep at the end so take it slow getting to the lake past the boot rock. The view (back) out at the lake is nice but the lake itself is kind of small. Enjoyed it overall!

15 days ago

Only 3 miles but still challenging. Elevated approximately 950 ft and it’s basically a stair stepper the whole way. We definitely felt like we accomplished a difficult hike. Probably because we are not the most fit persons around. The lake is small but nice. Lots of places to picnic or even dip your toes at the beach.

15 days ago

Lake disappointing as it is small. Got caught in a rain storm without rain gear so that was fun hiding under big boulders until we decided we would just make s run for it. Gem of a day though, with my honey!

17 days ago

A bit tougher than we were lead to believe! Those stairs at the end are tiring! Beautiful views all the way up, though. Sitting at the lake at the end was lovely.

18 days ago

I loved the wildflowers and you get the sound of rushing water following you along this hike. We couldn't go beyond into RMNP so didn't have a final "payoff" view but it was great! Beautiful trail, well maintained, pretty easy hike. Abundant parking at the trail head.

on Gem Lake Trail

18 days ago

Aside form the crowd and a few loudmouths on the trial, it was wonderful. These batholith hills have lots of surprises, with super views of Estes Park and RMNP, wild flowers and wide range of vegetation. We returned via the Two Owls loop. Highly recommend the extra half mile, with very few hikers. Having a walking stick was much appreciated on sections with high steep steps. .

22 days ago

Gem Lake trail is well maintained with some good views. My family and I were looking for a short hike to kill some time so we chose this one. That was all it was good for in our opinion. The views of Estes Park and surrounding peaks were pretty but the lake was more pond like...not anything spectacular.

Great hike with two kids in the backpacks.

This hike was AHMAZING! Would highly recommend getting to the hike early. It is a heavily trafficked trail.

25 days ago

If you aren’t from the area (like myself) be mindful of the elevation. It’s a steep hike, but I saw young children and older adults complete this hike. Know the most challenging Park was right before the lake. Also bring at least a couple of waters and a good snack for the top :)

26 days ago

Holy cow, that was a HIKE! I was warned this trail was more than a "moderate" hike, so in my mind I was ready. The rest of my body didn't get the memo.

Helpful hints:
-- arrive early. Parking lot was full by 9:30 a.m.
-- use a walking stick
-- start slow, finish strong
-- stop and smell the wild roses
-- carry two bottles of water
-- pack a lunch (and carry out your trash, please)
-- make sure your batteries for cellphone or camera are fully charged

I will make this hike again.

27 days ago

Awesome hike with great views throughout. Definitely a leg burner though, so be prepared to get a good workout in!

28 days ago

Get ready for a leg burner. Lots of stairs to climb up to the top. The lake was super busy which I thought odd for a Thursday mid-day hike. Take the Lumpy Ridge trail on the way down. Good scenery and less stairs. Lots of sun so come prepared.

If you like stairs you’ll love this hike, with that we flew down this thing on the way back. My phone read that this one was 66 flights total. A lot of sun on this hike when you start getting closer to the top. The lake isn’t as rewarding as some of the big ones, but it’s still beautiful. I’d do this one again for the workout not so much the destination.

29 days ago

Four stars only because we had to pick leeches off the kids’ feet after they ate lunch with them dangling in the lake. We found a “natural ac” spot coming from a little cave entrance around a bend about half way up- nice place to cool off. We got there around 11a and found a few parking spots open. The rangers are super friendly, we saw them on the way up and down. One took a family photo for us

Had a great time on this trail. at the very beginning but my pup and I enjoyed it immensely. Camera died on the way up I'll have to do it again.

Love this trail!

1 month ago

Great hike for views over Estes. The lake was a little disappointing. Definitely start early to avoid the crowds.

Great hike but can get a bit crowded

on Gem Lake Trail

1 month ago

Not too crowded compared to the other popular trails! Not too challenging, and the summit is just beautiful. You can hang out at the lake for an hour or two before heading back. Very satisfying hike, would recommend!

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