Hike to Ouzel and Bluebird Lakes

13.5 Miles Round Trip - 2500 ft gain - Out-and-Back Trail

Wild Basin Trailhead - Search Nearby - Added by Mio Monasch

This hike features beautiful fall colors, mountain views, multiple waterfalls and lakes, and is relatively quiet and less-trafficked.

With about 13 miles round trip and a 2500 ft. gain, Ouzel and Bluebird Lakes are the perfect destination for moderate to serious hikers, looking for a good day hike with diverse terrain and views including rivers, waterfalls, mountains, and lakes.

Park at the Wild Basin Trailhead about 30 minutes drive from Lyons. The trail begins through thicker and shaded woods with many smaller, yet beautiful, waterfalls along the side including Copeland Falls, Calypso Cascades, and finally Ouzel Falls. After the bridge below Ouzel Falls, a brief and moderate climb leads to an elevated desert atmosphere, with sandy ground, cactus, and small, weather worn trees. Look up and you’ll witness beautiful views of Longs Peak and Mount Meeker as you begin to near the Ouzel Lake area.

Around the 4 mile mark there’s a split, with Ouzel lake being about .5 miles to the left and Bluebird Lake another 2.5 to the right. It’s worth heading in to Ouzel for a quick break as the toughest part of the hike is just ahead, and the views are beautiful; you can also catch some shade in the trees near the lake and river which can be very needed after a few hours if the sun is high.

Head back to the split and begin the final stretch to Bluebird lake. Observe the cairns which lead up through various little gullies and switchbacks as the trail becomes less visible through rock and shale. You’ll know the second you arrive, as coming over the final ridge will immediately display breathtaking views of snowy peaks above and stunning emerald green water below.

To descend, take the same path back, perhaps saving some of the waterfalls for the return trip as, with the altitude and dryness along the top, you’ll welcome a few short snack and water breaks. An entire trip, including Ouzel and Bluebird Lakes is about 13.5 miles round trip and can be completed as a day trip, in about 6-7 hours with steady pace.

Tags

Photography
Hiking
Easy Parking
Forest
Lake
River
Scenic
Waterfall

Details

13.5 Miles
2500 ft elevation gain
Out-and-Back Trail

Stay Nearby

Estes Park, Colorado

Estes Park KOA

Boulder, Colorado

Boulder A-Lodge Camping

From $40/night

Boulder, Colorado

Boulder A-Lodge Hotel

From $99/night

Boulder, Colorado

Boulder A-Lodge Hostel

From $39/night

Nearby Adventures

Hike Mount Alice, Rocky Mountain National Park

16 Miles Round Trip - 5000 ft gain

Hike to Thunder Lake

12 Miles Round Trip - 2275 ft gain

Hike to Ouzel Falls

5.4 Miles Round Trip - 870 ft gain

Backpack to Lion and Snowbank Lakes

5.4 Miles Round Trip - 2859 ft gain

More Nearby Adventures

Tours

More Tours

Reviews

Leave a Review

Overall rating:  Rate this Adventure

Have you done this adventure? Leave a review!

Summer, a season not to be missed in Aspen!

"I came for the winter, and stayed for the summer," is a phrase you'll often hear around town.  The weather is one of the highlights. During the day the temperature hovers in the 70's and 80's, and by evening the mercury will drop into the 60's. Arts & culture enthusiasts will be just as fulfilled as the adventure junkie during summer in Aspen.  The events calendar abounds with activities for everyone, from cultural events to athletic pursuits.

Experiencing all Aspen has to offer is as easy as opening the front door. Join us for a summer adventure that’s anything but ordinary.

Advertisement