Bear Lake

A Beautiful Lake and a major trailhead.

Bear Lake, RMNP, CO.

How to get there:

Bear Lake lies at the end of Bear Lake Rd, about 9 miles from US 36.

  • From I-70/I-25 to Bear Lake Rd
  • 65 miles 1 hr 30 mins
  • GPS
  • Parking Area
  • 40.3118 -105.6426

In General:

The Bear Lake TH is just beyond the Bear Lake Ranger Station at the end of the parking lot and across the stream.

Fee InfoRoad StatusFree Shuttles

Photo Ops:VistaswildflowersWildlife

Bear Lake Interpretive Nature Loop HikingScenic vistas

  • Length: 0.7 miles RT
  • Elev gain: 60 ft
  • Rating: Easy
  • Hiking Time: min. 30 mins

At the TH, turn right to coincide with the interpretive guide. The trail itself circles scenic Bear Lake with Hallet Peak in the background. It’s an ideal family destination, but also provides access to nearly every other trail and destination in the entire area.

Nymph Lake, Dream Lake, Emerald Lake Trail HikingScenic vistas

  • Length: 3.6 miles RT
  • Elev gain:  615 ft
  • Rating: 4.8 Easy/Moderate
  • Hiking Time: min. 1 hr 45 mins

Follow the signs from the Bear Lake TH for Nymph, Dream and Emerald lakes. The trail climbs to Nymph Lake at 0.5 miles. During the summer, the lake is filled with pond lilies. The trail skirts along the east side of the lake and offers some great vistas of Hallett Peak, often reflecting in the still water of Nymph Lake. The trail continues above the lake’s north shore to another photo op, at mile 0.8, offering outstanding vistas of Longs Peak and Glacier Gorge. It becomes less steep near the Lake Haiyaha Jct and veers right over a bridge across Dream Lake’s outlet at mile 1.1 then follows the shore and the inlet up to Emerald Lake at 1.8 miles. Emerald Lake fills a deep bowl carved by Tyndall Glacier, which is located in a saddle between Hallet Peak and Flattop Mountain.

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