Hike to Sky Pond

10 miles 1780 ft gain  - Out-and-Back Trail

Added by Ryan Dewane

Incredible views of Rocky Mountain National Park. Escape all the main crowds below and be in complete solitude. 3 unique and beautiful lakes - The Loch, Glass Lake, and Sky Pond. Camping is available at all 3 lakes if you overnight but it is certainly doable in one day.

Start at the Glacier Gorge trailhead on Bear Lake Road. Parking is limited so it is advised to get there very early. It's a longer hike so plan on taking a full day to complete or stay overnight to enjoy more of the scenery.

Within the first mile on the Glacier Gorge Trail you will pass by Alberta Falls which is a really popular tourist destination. Continue past this to get to the really good stuff and ditch the crowds, looking for and following the junction to Loch Trail. About another 2 miles later you should reach the Loch which is the most scenic and largest lake of the three. You'll find the best campsites here. Continue past Loch Lake and begin a somewhat strenuous climb up to Glass Lake as the Loch Trail turns into Sky Pond Lake Trail. At the last point before you reach Glass Lake a bit of scrambling is involved up some rocks which can be dangerous in icy conditions - step carefully and you will be fine. Sky pond is a short quarter mile walk past this which is the ending point of the hike. Turn around and retrace your steps back to the trailhead and parking lot or set up camp at one of the three lakes.

To get to the trailhead, drive west on Hwy 34 out of Loveland for 30 miles until you reach Hwy 36 where you'll make a left. Drive about 4 miles on Hwy 36, make a final left onto Bear Lake Rd and follow about 8 miles all the way to the Glacier Gorge traihead.

If you need a place to refuel after the hike, head back to Loveland on the 34 and hit up Big Beaver Brewery.

Read More

Tags

Camping
Photography
Backpacking
Hiking
Forest
Lake
River
Scenic
Waterfall

Reviews

Leave a Review

Overall rating: 

over 2 years ago

A Classic

As beautiful as the park gets, also one of the most crowded hiking routes in the entire park.

over 3 years ago

Stunning

Absolutely gorgeous- both en route and at sky pond

Explorer

🥇Top Contributor

almost 4 years ago

Always a good hike

Always loved this hike. If the light is good, try scrambling to the left a short distance for some photography when you get to Timberline Falls.

🥈 Contributor

almost 4 years ago

The best hike I have done to date

This hike will leave you breathless for 2 reasons. The altitude and the views. If you choose to do this hike you will not be disappointed. Its one of the best in the RMNP.

Explorer

🥇Top Contributor

about 4 years ago

Fav hike in Rocky Mountain

Oh wow, I don't have enough good things to say about this one! I did it for sunrise twice this past summer, and each time, watching the sun come up over the alpine lakes and Rockies was even better than the last. This trailhead area is VERY popular, but once you get past the falls around the first mile, you also get past the crowds. Love everything about it!

Stay Nearby

Larimer County, Colorado

Glacier Basin Campground

Overview Glacier Basin Campground (8,500 feet) is adjacent to Estes Park in the awe-inspiring Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado. From lush valleys to craggy peaks with elevations reaching ov...

Estes Park, Colorado

Moraine Park Campground

Overview Moraine Park Campground (8,160 feet) is located in Colorado's awe-inspiring Rocky Mountain National Park, near the Beaver Meadows Entrance on Highway 36. It is situated on the north side o...

Estes Park, Colorado

Estes Park Koa

Allenspark, Colorado

Olive Ridge

Overview The Olive Ridge Campground is located within the Roosevelt National Forest, situated near the southeastern corner of Rocky Mountain National Park at an elevation of 8,350 feet.Recreation O...

Nearby Adventures

  • Hike to Jewel Lake

    This trail starts at the Glacier Gorge Trailhead. This trailhead fills quickly at any time of year, so it's best to get there early to guarantee a parking spot. You can also park at Bear Lake where there's more spaces and add just under 2 miles to...

    6.4 miles 727 ft gain

  • Hike the Spearhead

    Beginning from the Glacier Gorge trailhead, follow trail signs towards Mills Lake. At Mills, continue onward past Black Lake, and then continue hiking up into the incredible basin above Black Lake. Spearhead will be unmissable.Once in the basin, h...

    11.5 miles 3300 ft gain

  • Winter Hike to Loch Vale

    This winter adventure begins at the popular Glacier Gorge Trailhead in Rocky Mountain National Park. Make sure you arrive early as the parking lot fills up quickly! We started the hike with our microspikes on and carried our snowshoes. The park ra...

    6 miles 1040 ft gain

  • The Loch Vale Hike

    The trail starts at the Glacier Gorge trailhead along the road to Bear Lake. After hiking for just under a mile, you'll pass Alberta Falls and continue up the trail through the gorge. At about 2 miles you'll reach a clear junction, with trails tow...

    6 miles 1000 ft gain

  • Inspire Your Fall Aspen Trip!

    Autumn days in Aspen are filled with sunshine and nights with crisp cool air. Watch the mountains and valleys turn gold with the changing Aspen trees. Take in the scenery while enjoying scenic drives, hiking through forests, road biking, and exploring our IMBA Gold Level Ride Center recognized mountain bike trails. 




    Learn More