Emerald Lake Trail, Rocky Mountain National Park

#1 of 18 in Trails in Rocky Mountain National Park
Must see · Hiking Trail · Nature / Park
A popular scenic route in the Rocky Mountain National Park, Emerald Lake Trail traverses changing terrain past two lakes and several waterfalls. Starting at the end of Bear Lake Road, this moderate 5 km (3.1 mi) hiking trail offers rewarding views of rocky mountain peaks and diverse geological features, including Hallett Peak and Glacier Gorge. Keep an eye open for local wildlife during the one-hour hike around the lake, and you might spot families of elks or mule deer. If you want to avoid crowds, start early in the morning. Take a look at our Rocky Mountain National Park tour builder site to schedule your visit to Emerald Lake Trail and learn about what else to see and do during your holiday.
Improve this listing »
Create an itinerary including Emerald Lake Trail
© OpenMapTiles © OpenStreetMap contributors

Emerald Lake Trail reviews

Rate this attraction
TripAdvisor traveler rating
TripAdvisor traveler rating 5.0
527 reviews
  • Beautiful lake hike, definitely recommend going all the way to Emerald if you're able because it is the most scenic. Dream Lake is also very pretty. I struggled with the elevation the whole week we...  more »
  • We added RMNP to an existing itinerary, at the last minute. We were told by most rangers as well as a Bear Lake guidebook that this hike was easy. Let me clarify this for readers. When we went on...  more »
  • We hiked to Emerald Lake today and loved every moment. Very slushy and icy for maybe 2/3 of the trail....we took the advice of another reviewer who recommended microspikes which you can rent for...  more »

Plan your trip to Rocky Mountain National Park

  • Get a personalized trip
    A complete day by day itinerary
    based on your preferences
  • Customize it
    Refine your trip. We'll find the
    best routes and schedules
  • Book it
    Choose from the best hotels
    and activities. Up to 50% off
  • Manage it
    Everything in one place.
    Everyone on the same page.