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




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Grand Lake, Colorado Map

Amazing views, worth every step.

5 days ago

Simple hike but absolutely gorgeous views of the Rockies and a nice stream/waterfall. Trail is well kept and would totally do this again given the opportunity.

Beautiful way to see the Grand Lake entrance part of RMNP. We did this hike sept 28 and arrived around 7:15 to an empty trailhead and it took us 5 hours RT. The trail starts with switchbacks that get good incline but nothing unmanageable. The first section of the forest we saw multiple deer, dress warm as it’s entirely in the shade. 2 miles in you hit a landslide, an older couple was turning back, but climb it gradually and hold onto the debris and it’s not tricky. If anything, it’s absolutely fascinating to see! The trail continues on a ledge of the forest where you get great views of the valley below. The last mile and a half is pretty steep and rocky, but worth it for the lake at the end! Multiple meadows, so be on the lookout for moose and elk everywhere! VERY chilly at the top, but great rocks in the sun to stop and enjoy lunch. The downhill can be rough on the knees.

Easy walk with nice views of the surrounding mountains. This is a good way to end the day at the park.

6 days ago

The trail can be a bit steep at first but is a solid workout and journey into the woods. Not many views as you are deep in the forest but totally worth it.

This trail is a must do. We camped at the unnamed lake below parika lake and then near the junction to Bowen lake. Would rate as strenuous, and there is a lot of exposure on the ridge lines past parika lake. We had wind gusts of probably 60 mph or so. We took our rain flies off our packs, because they were acting like parachutes and sometimes the wind was so strong you had to stop before you could move again. Definitely worth it though. Vertical drop offs on the ridge are more gradual than straight down, so not bad IMHO, and I’m not a heights fan! The views at the peak of 12300 feet or so are absolutely breathtaking.

off road driving
9 days ago

The main trail is not a 4x4 trail. The side roads/waypoints are what make it fun. We did this in a 2015 JKUR lifted with all the right stuff.
There are narrow spots and you will endure Colorado pin striping on the trails we went down.
Plus side- we saw 6 moose. 2 bulls and 4 females up close and personal.

Harder than we thought for kids, but we did it!

Horseshit. Literally everywhere. Here is a serious question. Why does the National Park Service ban pets (leashed or not), but allow horses on trails? The impact pets make to park trails while leashed is miniscule compared to the loads of dung and raping of grasslands that horses make. All so their fat ass owners don't have to breath hard. And yes I saw those horses feeding on that big meadow, stepped around their huge fresh piles and verified that their owners were indeed very fat. Also verified that their horse trailer and truck took up a quarter of the parking space. All for the pleasure if two fat asses. /rant over.

Fantastic hike, exhausting but totally worth it. We got lucky and saw 4 moose at the lake. Also Aspens along the trail were gorgeous and the views of Grand lake were really pretty. It took us 4 hours to get to the lake and about 2 and change to come down. Highly recommend during fall season (we hiked this at the end of September)

Started at sunrise which provided stunning views of the Red Mountain and the Never Summer Wilderness mountains. The hike is a bit tough but I am flatlander, so take that with a grain of salt. All in all, there was a never a point where I thought I wouldn't be able to make it all the way to the lake. The lake was every bit worth it. We had it to ourselves minus a small group that rolled in as we rolled out. There was a solo hiker who got up there much earlier than us who saw two moose...if you walk along the southeast side of the lake towards what would be considered the back, there are two smaller lakes that sit directly above Lake Timber, this is where he saw them. We saw a mama moose and her calf about 10 yds off trail on way down. Great hike!

Easy flat trails, offers great views of the Never Summer Wilderness range just beyond the valley. We went in the afternoon after doing Timber Lake in the morning, this was great after a strenuous hike but did not offer much wildlife due to the timing of day. Suggest dusk or dawn to see wildlife, nice trail nonetheless.

16 days ago

Absolutely amazing hike, but definitely very strenuous. Once you're above the tree line, it gets tricky with the temperature drop, the low air density, and the incessant winds. The trail is fine until the last bit when there's a bit of rock clambering to the peak. Super views but my personal favorite is Sky Pond.

My 12 year old daughter and I did this in 8 hours. Be aware of switch backs and stairs! beautiful and rewarding.

We hiked this trail 2 days ago, it took us 6 hours round trip. Beautiful scenery, good elevation, light traffic and Lone lake was beautiful, worth the distance. We saw a female Moose and was able to video tape ( a bit to close for me) she was on our trail. Best hiking trail we visited!

20 days ago

Just did this Sunday 9/23/18. Good hike with kids 9 and 13 y/o. A few steeper parts but nothing too rugged. Have plenty of snacks and water. West Portal Road has a small stretched that is closed for bridge repair. You have to drive past the initial road closure signs to access the road to the trailhead. There are two parking lots, the smaller one being the first and the one where you access the trail. The larger one is very close and just beyond the first.

this Trail is wonderful. The first one point five miles are very challenging and difficult. However they are in the forest so you're protected from the elements. For a considerable distance once you passed the tree line it is a wonderful Trail to walk on. Unfortunately we didn't make it to the summit. The weather was cloudy and it was incredibly cold, and it is very windy as everyone says. We did make it to Peak 12150. I would do this hike again no doubt. However the next time, I would go more prepared with the proper attire. While we were dressed in the appropriate coat and pant layering, the lack of a hat and gloves made it unbearable. I recommend all of these if you plan to take this hike. Far better to be able to remove them if its cold then to not have them at all. Again, I do plan to make the hike again, so that I can get to the summit of Mount Ida. It's a stunning hike and well worth every step.

Absolutely stunning and quite the hidden gem. Hardly anyone on the trails with us. Great time to go is in late September. The birch wood were golden and beautiful.

Great view

22 days ago

Scenic, saw lots of small wildlife. A hiker we passed saw a moose.

Easy and flat trails in the valley. We visited in the afternoon and didn’t meet any animals. Not a good timing

23 days ago

Take two. We hiked this trail Saturday morning. Incredible views! SPF!!! you are being blasted by the sun on this hike (weather permitting). I would not want to try this hike in early/mid-summer with afternoon thunderstorms because there is no protection once above treeline. I did post pics too. We saw a Ptarmigan as well as pika's, marrmots.

awesome! tough in the winter in March. lots of ice and snow. can't wait to do in summer again.

25 days ago

This was the first long trail I have done in Colorado. Have to say overall a great experience. The trail in the beginning is well maintained and easy to find, however when you get to the rocky portion of the hike it is a bit tough to find the actual trail. The last hour or so was a bit hard for me as I am still not used to the elevation so we had to take breaks. We did not see a lot of people on the trail either which was nice. Took us about 5h45min with a lunch on the summit. The views are amazing and the trail is rewarding. Make sure you have a wind jacket as it was very windy when we did it. Great hike! Highly recommend it.

25 days ago

Well maintained trail & not many people! Summit views are stunning!!!

Hiked 9/15. This is a hidden gem. The scenery is spectacular, and you’ll pretty much have it all to yourself (I started at 9 AM on a Saturday and only saw two other hikers during the entire round-trip). Plenty of parking at the roundabout of the trailhead. As others have mentioned, it’s not an easy hike. Most comments mention the steepness of the first mile. I didn’t think that part was too bad – seemed short-lived (with fresh legs, at least). After that, it mellows out for a stretch and follows the Roaring Fork. When the trail splits with Wantanga Lake to the left and the Roaring Fork Trail to the right, keep right. That’s where it got tough for me. It was a long and steep ascent up Mt. Irving Hale. I had to stop numerous times to take a breather. But you’re rewarded for your efforts at the top – you’ll come to a big grassy clearing with an incredible view of the Indian Peaks.

I was nervous about the descent, since I read the trail was easy to lose. There was really only one part that threw me off. You’ll crouch under the arch of a fallen tree, hang left around a boulder, then come to a spot where you can either go right or left. You want to go left – not sure where the other path leads. Shout out to the reviewer CJ below me who partially blocked the trail to the right with a rock and some sticks – I probably would’ve gone right had I not read him comment beforehand. From there, it’s pretty easy to follow down to Stone Lake (although the trail pretty much becomes matted down grass in some spots). The scenery down in the canyon and at the lake is phenomenal. I tried to follow the trail to Upper Lake, but the trail seemed to disappear…either I missed something, or the trail doesn’t quite go all the way. Saw it from afar, but decided not to go off-trail.

Going up Mt. Irving Hale again on the way back was tiring, but then it’s all downhill the rest of the way. Since you have to cross the mountain twice, be mindful of afternoon storms. I specifically picked a day without storms in the forecast for that reason.

26 days ago

We started by 7 am on 9/16/18 and had the trail to ourselves. We finished by noon and that included a lot of downtime at the lake which was spectacular. Loved this lake. The trail itself was underwhelming. Dense forest mostly. Not difficult for us. However, the beauty was the lake. We loved it, and having it all to ourselves was bliss. We also saw a lot of moose. It was a wonderful hike.

Short, great views of the falls.

We tried the perimeter trail from the trailhead st the dam of Shadow Mountain Lake. The views of the lake and surrounding peaks are incredible! The devastation of the pine forest by pine beetles is regrettable and mars the beauty of this area. The lake was also being used by fishermen and boaters (loud outboard motors and the smell of their exhaust also detracted from an otherwise beautiful location.

The perimeter trail is mostly flat with a few downed trees and some end-of-summer growth beginning to encroach. We did not attempt the steeper climb up to the viewpoint.

We just hiked this trail yesterday and loved it. Getting there would be my only concern in the future - we had an OHV and had no issue but I would not have taken a vehicle even with 4WD all the way to the trail head.

Other than that, beautiful hike, very secluded.

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