Hike to Emerald Lake from Bear Lake Trailhead



3.5 miles

Elevation Gain

650 ft

Route Type


Added by Brandyn Murray

The drive to Rocky Mountain National Park through Estes Park was breathtaking. The hike up the trail was awesome. A lot of scenic spots to snap some photos especially when you get to the lakes.

The hike to Emerald lake starts at the trailhead of Bear Lake. The trailhead is located at the end of Bear Lake road, it is 9 miles from the right turn off of highway 36. Suggestion--consider the shuttle bus to take you to the trailhead because this place is popular & parking is limited. At the start of the trailhead you can turn right to enjoy the views of Bear Lake. Turn left and it will take you to the start of your hike to Dream & Emerald Lake. Before reaching Dream Lake, you will discover a little pond. You will continue to hike forward through the trees and end up at the foot of Dream lake. After continuing to the north side of Dream Lake at about 1.8 miles and 10,110 feet you will reach Emerald Lake.

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Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures and follow local regulations. Please explore responsibly!

We want to acknowledge and thank the past, present, and future generations of all Native Nations and Indigenous Peoples whose ancestral lands we travel, explore, and play on.

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