Hiking Rocky Mountain National Park: The 25 Best Hikes

Rocky Mountain National Park is located in northwestern Colorado. The park is one of the highest national parks, ranging in elevation between 7,800 and 14,200 feet above sea level.

Rocky Mountain National Park is for you if you like rugged peaks. It contains at least 77 mountain peaks over 12,000 feet!

Hiking Rocky Mountain National Park is the best way to experience the awe of these magnetic peaks, stunning lakes, glaciers, glacial landforms, wildflowers, and diverse wildlife.

We will discuss the best trails in Rocky National Park, but first, there are a few things we need to discuss before we hike. If you wish, you can use the quick navigation links to skip down to the hikes.

rocky mountain national park map of trailheads

A larger map can be found in the downloadable Zip File below.

A Few Things About Rocky National Park Before Getting There

The best time to visit the Park is between June and September. 

You will most likely need a reservation to get into the Park.

It sucks, I know.

But it does keep the number of people down and protects the resource.

Plus, the parking lots fill up quickly, and traffic jams are the norm, especially on holiday weekends. 

You can find up-to-date information on the Time-Entry Permit System for the park. Also, getting an America the Beautiful – National Parks & Federal Recreational Lands Annual Pass is a good idea. 

The webpage has a good FAQ section to answer questions about the $80 pass. It does have other perks besides entry into the National Parks. 

To plan where you want to hike, it’s a good idea to look at the trail location, the topography, and the elevations you will hike over. The National Geographic Map is a great choice. I use these for many parks and trails I hike. 

Getting to Rocky Mountain National Park

If you aren’t driving to Rocky Mountain National Park, the best way is to fly to Denver International Airport (DEN) and rent a car. The drive is about 80 miles into the town of Estes Park, located on the park’s eastern edge.

There is also a shuttle that runs from the airport to Estes Park. The shuttle company is the Estes Park Shuttle. Click the link for more information.

Where to Stay at Rocky Mountain National Park

Fortunately, there are numerous hotels, motels, Air BnB, and resorts in Estes Park, Colorado. However, the national park is usually bustling, so reserve a place well before arrival. I’m not saying you can’t find a place on short notice, but you will have more choices and better luck reserving early.

If you are like me, you will be camping. The good news is there are five campgrounds located within Rocky Mountain National Park. There are many more outside the park too.

The campgrounds range from primitive campsites to RV parks. The following map shows the location of the campgrounds.

You can receive a pdf file of this map to enlarge it for better viewing. 

Click here to download a zip file that contains the following pdf files. The Rocky Mountain NP Map and the campground map are shown abovePlus, six other trail guides of hikes in Rocky Mountain National Park. 

How to Get to the Hiking Trailheads

Luckily for those not driving to Rocky Mountain, the Park Service has shuttles that run to many trailheads. 

The service runs from the middle of May to early October. The fee is nominal, but reservations might be required. 

You can get up-to-date information on the shuttles, and public transportation on the National Park Service dedicated RMNP page.

I’m not into making reservations or waiting patiently. So for others like me, there are also private shuttles to Rocky Mountain National Park trailheads. 

You can find information on some of these services by visiting the Explore Estes website.

The schedule for the private shuttle services is less structured, meaning you don’t have to be in a particular place on time.

Because who knows how long it will take you to hike Rocky Mountain National Park trails? So even though the private shuttles are more expensive, they can be a better way to get to and back from hiking Rocky Mountain National park trails. 

Rocky Mountain National Park Webcams

Yes, you can get live feeds from the park on their website.

These are really cool! You can see the current conditions live. The view refreshes every minute or so, or you can refresh the feed at any time!

The cams include:

Alpine Visitors Center

Kawuneeche Valley

Continental Divide

Longs Peak

and entrances to the park at

Fall River and Beaver Meadows

Hiking Rocky Mountain National Parks Trails

There are so many great hiking trails in the Rocky Mountain National Park. Surprisingly, many are not long or difficult. However, Rocky Mountian National Park is at such a high elevation that it can be difficult to catch your breath with even a little exertion or a climb up a shallow gradient. 

The weather can also change quickly, and there is often little cover from wind, rain, sleet, and, more importantly, lightning. 

Caution is best exercised even on short hikes.

hiking rocky mountain national park

Best Hiking in the Rocky Mountian Park

Below are the 26 most common trails and destinations in the Rocky Mountian National Park. You can find some pdf maps and descriptions of the trails in the free zip file. The file also contains a pdf map of the park and campsites. 

The videos within each trail (or destination) description can contain helpful information on trailhead parking or exciting spots along the trail. However, the primary purpose is to show you the trail surface and terrain. The videos also show you how beautiful each area is and why you want to hike that trail. 

The hikes are not listed in any particular order or by location. Instead, refer to the maps within the zip file or video for trailhead location.

1. Hiking Bear Lake Loop 

  • Trail Difficulty: Easy
  • Park Location: Bear Lake Road – Near Bear Lake Ranger Station
  • Roundtrip Length: 0.8 miles
  • Highest Elevation: 9,475 feet
  • Elevation Gain: 45 feet

The Bear Lake Loop circles the small alpine lake with excellent views of Hallett Peak. If the wind is calm, you’ll be able to take photos of the mountain peak reflecting off the smooth lake surface.

In the summer, aspens whisper to you at the slightest breeze and are a blaze of yellow in the fall. 

This is a great hiking trail for the whole family. A few sections are steep, but they should not cause a problem for most people.

2. Hiking to Alberta Falls

  • Trail Difficulty: Easy
  • Park Location: Bear Lake Road – Glacier Gorge Trailhead
  • Roundtrip Length: 2.1 miles
  • Highest Elevation: 9,400 feet
  • Elevation Gain: 200 feet

Alberta Falls is one of the most popular hikes and designations in Rocky Mountian National Park. If the weather is nice, expect the parking area to be full. Using the park shuttle is an excellent way to reduce some frustration with parking.

The falls are about 30 feet tall, but an amazing amount of water rushes through the narrow gorge and over the drop to crash onto large boulders. 

You can extend the hike from Alberta Falls to Mills Lake or The Loch. However, the hike isn’t as easy from this point forward, so be sure you have the energy and time to complete the trek.

3. Hiking Alpine Ridge Trail

  • Trail Difficulty: Easy
  • Park Location: Alpine Visitor Center
  • Roundtrip Length: 0.6 miles
  • Highest Elevation: 12,000 feet
  • Elevation Gain: 210 feet

The trail description is from the end of Trail Ridge Road, which is the highest continuous paved road in the U.S.

The entirety of the trail is in the alpine zone. Because of the number of visitors, the trail was paved to reduce erosion and impact on the fragile, slow-growing plants. Please stay on the marked trail.

Don’t like the shortness of this trail fool you. There are over 250 steps up to the top of the ridge. 

Also, you are at 12,000 feet, so not only is there a lack of oxygen, but it is almost always windy and much colder than Estes Park. So be sure to dress for the cold and wind chill.  

When clear, there are great views of Mount Chapin, Mount Chiquita, Ypsilon Mountain, and the Never Summer Mountains. How cool a name for a range of mountains! 

During the spring, the alpine plants bloom with a spectacular display of color. Chances are you will see marmots and other high-elevation mammals here.

4. Hiking to Gem Lake

  • Trail Difficulty: Moderate
  • Park Location: Estes Park – Lumpy Ridge Trailhead
  • Roundtrip Length: 3.5 miles
  • Highest Elevation: 8,650 feet
  • Elevation Gain: 571 feet

This trail offers at least four points of interest. The first is the panoramic views the trail offers of Long Peak and the mountains that make up the continental divide.

The trail weaves in and out of many interesting rock formations cut into the granite, including one called Paul Bunyan’s Boot.

As you near the top of the climb and Gem Lake, you can turn around and have panoramic views of Estes Park.

The upper portion of the trail is quite steep, with large and tall natural and built rock steps.

Gem Lake is at the end of the climb, and although small, the lake has a vertical granite cliff face that makes an impressive view.

The lake has no inlet or outlet and forms from snow melt retained in the basin at the base of the cliff face.

Gem Lake is another popular hiking designation, so the trail can become crowded with hikers.

5. Hiking Ute Trail to Tombstone Ridge & Timberline Pass

  • Trail Difficulty: Easy
  • Park Location: Alpine Visitor Center or the Ute Crossing
  • Roundtrip Length: 4.1 miles
  • Highest Elevation: 11,660 feet
  • Elevation Gain: 410 feet

The Ute Trail is located in the Alpine Tundra zone, so please be careful and stay on the marked and eroded trail to not disturb more of the fragile plant life. 

As the trail is above the tree line and at high elevation, the weather conditions are almost always windy and much colder than expected. Longer than the Alpine Ridge Trail, it will take you more time to find cover or protection if the weather changes drastically. And it can. 

If you start at the Ute Crossing trailhead, the first ridge you come to is the Tombstone Ridge. With its expansive views, the exposed ridge may allow you to spot herds of elk roaming on the tundra or bighorn sheep and mountain goats on the mountainsides.

Timberline Pass is about 2-miles from the trailhead and provides views of Longs Peak, Estes Park, and Moraine Park.

Day hikers will turn around at the pass. However, the trail continues to Windy Gulch and eventually Beaver Meadows (discussed below).

6. Hiking to Nymph Lake

  • Trail Difficulty: Easy
  • Park Location: Alpine Visitor Center or the Ute Crossing
  • Roundtrip Length: 1.0 miles
  • Highest Elevation: 9,700 feet
  • Elevation Gain: 460 feet

Start your hike to Nymph Lake at the Bear Lake Trailhead. After passing Bear Lake, you will make a climb up to Nymph Lake. The mountains seem to tower over Nymph Lake, lined with conifers and rock outcroppings.

At the south end of the lake, there is a picnic area.

You can extend the hike by going to Dream Lake (see below).

7. Hiking to Dream Lake

  • Trail Difficulty: Easy
  • Park Location: Bear Lake Trailhead
  • Roundtrip Length: 2.2 miles
  • Highest Elevation: 9,900 feet
  • Elevation Gain: 400 feet

The Bear Lake Trailhead is a popular starting point for many trails leading to different destinations. Dream Lake is one of these.

You will also pass Nymph Lake (above) to get to Dream Lake. At the south end of Nymph Lake, the trail continues.

You will catch views of Hallett Peak and Longs Peak. 

In a little over a mile (from the trailhead), you will come to a junction to Lake Haiyaha. But to go to Dream Lake, take a right at the intersection, and it will lead you down to the lake. 

You can view several 12,000-foot peaks over Dream Lake.

But it doesn’t end there. From Dream Lake, you can hike less than a mile and visit Emerald Lake.

8. Hiking to Emerald Lakes

  • Trail Difficulty: Easy
  • Park Location: Bear Lake Trailhead
  • Roundtrip Length: 3.5 miles
  • Highest Elevation: 10,100 feet
  • Elevation Gain: 650 feet

Emerald Lake is the last in a string of three lakes on the trail from Bear Lake Trailhead. From the start of the trailhead, you will visit three lakes in less than 2-miles!

Emerald Lake is the highest of the three at an elevation near 10,000 feet. At the northern end of Dream Lake, the trail climbs up through Tyndall Gorge. If you thought the views of the mountains were terrific from Nymph and Dream Lakes, wait until you see them from Emerald Lake. Hallett Peak dominates the background of the lake, and you will also be able to see Flattop Mountain. 

The water flowing down the gorge is glacier-fed from Tyndall Glacier. So you can hear the rushing water from all around Emerald Lake. 

You should not miss these three subalpine lakes. Some say emerald Lake is the most beautiful in Rocky Mountain National Park. 

9. Hiking to Bierstadt Lake

  • Trail Difficulty: Moderate
  • Park Location: Bear Lake Trailhead
  • Roundtrip Length: 4.5 miles
  • Highest Elevation: 9,750 feet
  • Elevation Gain: 650 feet

The Bear Lake Trailhead is the most accessible access to hike to Bierstadt Lake. 

Pay attention to the signs, as the trails leading out are numerous and, at times, confusing.

The trail to Bierstadt Lake is no different, as you will pass trails to Bear Lake, Odessa Lake, Lake Helene, Mill Creek Basin, and Bierstadt Moraine.

It is the latter where the trail starts to become rougher and filled with boulders in some spots—many sections of the trail travel through pine and spruce forests. 

Bierstadt Lake is treelined mainly; however, the mountains of the continental divide tower over the trees. 

The best views are from the north end of the lake.

10. Hiking to Deer Mountain

  • Trail Difficulty: Moderate
  • Park Location: Deer Ridge Junction
  • Roundtrip Length: 6.2 miles
  • Highest Elevation: 10,000 feet
  • Elevation Gain: 1,250 feet

The Deer Ridge Junction is located near the Beaver Meadows Entrance and is a popular hike because it is longer and wilder than some of the other hikes we discussed. 

It is a steady mountain climb with a false peak and a col before summitting at 10,000 feet. The climb is not technical, so almost anyone can reach the peak.

There is a 360-degree view from the top overlooking valleys, meadows, and the continental divide mountains.

If you plan on hiking the more difficult and higher peaks of Rocky Mountain National Park, this is an excellent place to test the legs and equipment before heading further into the park.

11. Hiking to Twin Sisters

  • Trail Difficulty: Difficult or strenuous 
  • Park Location: Twin Sisters Trailhead near Lily Lake Visitors Center
  • Roundtrip Length: 7.0 miles
  • Highest Elevation: 11,400 feet
  • Elevation Gain: 2,470 feet

Twin Sisters Peak leaves nothing to the imagination. She stands there in all her glory, inviting you to summit her peak. 

The hike up Twin Sisters will take you through a recent massive landslide area that removed sections of the old trail. 

Follow the cairns built in the landslide area to cross over to the newly cut trail.  The new trail is very steep, even though there are switchbacks.

Most of the hike, except the landslide section, is forested. However, at around 11,000 feet, the trees thin to nothing but rocks and scree. 

The mountain is called Twin Sisters because there are two peaks (east and west), and there are trails up both. 

The east peak is slightly higher but more challenging to climb.

This hike is best done in clear weather, as navigation is difficult when you are within clouds. There are cairns, but hiking is challenging in bad weather because of the mountains’ exposure.

The views from the top of the peaks on a clear day are amazing.

12 & 13. Hiking to Fern Lake and Odessa Lake

  • Trail Difficulty: Difficult or strenuous 
  • Park Location: Fern Lake Trailhead
  • Roundtrip Length: 9.5 miles
  • Highest Elevation: 10,000 feet
  • Elevation Gain: 1,900 feet

The Fern Lake Trailhead is located in the Moraine Park Area (see the article’s map and downloadable zip file). If you are camping, the Moraine Park Campground is nearby. 

To get to Odessa Lake, you first need to hike up to Fern Lake. You can also take a 1-mile side trail and visit Spruce Lake.

Fern Lake is about 4-miles from the trailhead. You will hike next to Big Thompson River and walk through an arch formed from a huge fallen rock from the cliff face.

Another side trail will take you to Fern Falls – it is worth it to hike to the falls. They are spectacular. 

There were several cabins along the trail, but they burned in the 2020 East Troublesome Fire that burned over 25,000 acres.

Fern Lake is similar to the subalpine lakes, small but with fantastic views of mountains in the background.

The trail continues from the north side of Fern Lake and climbs up to Odessa Lake.

Views from Odessa Lake are fantastic, as you can see Knobtop Mountain, Little Matterhorn, Flattop Mountian, and Notchtop Mountain all over or near 12,000 feet above sea level. 

This short (less than 5-miles) hike includes much of the previous history of the park, stunning lakeside views, rock formations, and mountain vistas.

14 & 15. Hiking to Mills Lake and Black Lake

  • Trail Difficulty: Moderate 
  • Park Location: Glacier Gorge
  • Roundtrip Length: 5.5 miles
  • Highest Elevation: 9,950 feet
  • Elevation Gain: 800 feet

The Glacier Gorge Trailhead is off Bear Lake Road. 

You will pass Alberta Falls on the way to Mills Lake.

Leaving most people behind at Alberta Falls, continue along the trail and pass the junctions of North Longs Peak, Trail, Loch Vale Trail, and the side trail to Lake Haiyaha.

Mills Lake is about 2.5-miles from the trailhead, and near the lake, you will cross Glacier Creek and see Glacier Falls. 

Mills Lake is a narrow subalpine lake with views of Halk Mountain and Keyboard of the Winds, Chief Heads Peak, Thatchtop Mountain, and Pagoda Mountain. Most of these peaks are over or close to 13,000 feet in elevation. 

To visit Black Lake, continue up the trail about 1.8-miles passing Jewel Lake on the way. 

Black Lake is worth the extra miles because you will see many more 13,000-foot mountains behind the lake. These include Spearhead Peak and McHenrys Peak.

Mills Lake formed in a glacial cirque at the base of McHenrys and Cheifs Head Peak. 

Unmarked trails that are easy to follow in good weather visit a few more lakes and the shoulders of the enormous mountains around Black Lake.

16. Hiking to Sky Pond

  • Trail Difficulty: Difficult 
  • Park Location: Glacier Gorge
  • Roundtrip Length: 9.0 miles
  • Highest Elevation: 11,000 feet
  • Elevation Gain: 1,800 feet

Like the Mills Lake hike, use the Glacier Gorge Trailhead and walk up to Alberta Falls. When you get to the Longs Peak trailhead, take that instead of continuing to Mills Lake. 

The trail becomes more difficult before leveling off near Loch Vale (discussed below). 

Continue hiking toward Sky Pond and Andrews Glacier. The trail to Sky Pond splits to the left, and soon you will have views of Timberline Falls. Now the trail becomes very steep and turns into a rock scramble. 

Timberline Falls is a cascading waterfall of considerable height, and you will be hiking up the same face in a nearby widened crevasse. Here, again, this becomes a rock scramble. 

At the top of this scramble, a surprise awaits you. A small alpine lake called Lake of Glass comes into view.

Take a rest at the lake because you have another rock scramble to reach the sky pond. 

Sky Pond is named well, as it sits in a cirque, blocked by a glacial moraine, at almost 11,000 above sea level. The cirque basin nearly encloses the lake. The granite wall behind the lake is called the Sharkstooth because of its narrow, sharp spires.

To me, alpine lakes are eerie. I’m used to tree-lined lake shores, but at these elevations, the lakes are stark with maybe a few short shrubs and bare gray rocks.

Still, they are beautiful, especially when the sky is blue and the clouds are high, white, and puffy.

17. Hiking to Chasm Lake

  • Trail Difficulty: Difficult 
  • Park Location: Longs Peak Ranger Station
  • Roundtrip Length: 8.5 miles
  • Highest Elevation: 11,800 feet
  • Elevation Gain: 2,500 feet

Chasm Lake is an alpine lake that rests at an elevation of almost 12,000 feet above sea level! 

The lake sits in a cirque at the base of Mount Lady Washington and the flank of Longs Peak (14.

The trail is steep and unrelenting.

Remember, there is little to no cover at these elevations, so be alert for changes in the weather. 

We will not discuss much of the trails for these high-elevation lakes and peaks because you will need more information to hike to these places than we can provide here. 

We have a map and information in the downloadable zip file and embedded videos in the article. 

What we will say is these points of interest have amazing views. If you have good weather and believe you have the appropriate fitness level and hiking experience, you should hike to these destinations because the views will be burned into your memory.

18. Hiking the Continental Ridge Trail to Mount Ida

  • Trail Difficulty: Difficult 
  • Park Location: Poudre Lake Trailhead
  • Roundtrip Length: 9.6 miles
  • Highest Elevation: 12,890 feet
  • Elevation Gain: 2,460 feet

Ready to go over 12,000 feet in elevation? 

Mount Ida will get you to that point. 

The trail is straightforward; hike upwards. 

The hike takes you past Lake Poudre until you eventually get above the treeline and into the alpine tundra.

Even though the climb doesn’t have rock scrambles or neck-craning steepness, it is a steady upward hike. 

Your exposure is probably more worrying than the trail steepness once you get above the tree line. At these elevations, the wind is almost constant, the sun is stronger because of the lack of atmosphere, and the weather changes quickly.

Clouds can be your biggest problem socking in your views and the trail.

However, on good days it doesn’t get any better. Mount Ida is the 25th tallest mountain in Rocky Mountain National Park, but it might have the best overall views of all the mountains. 

Mount Ida might be the best hike in Rocky Mountain National Park because of its openness. You have no worries about falling or getting back down.

But remember, you are a lightning rod on these open-topped mountains, so be alert.

19 & 20. Hiking to Flattop Mountain and Hallett Peak

  • Trail Difficulty: Difficult 
  • Park Location: Bear Lake Trailhead
  • Roundtrip Length: 10.5 miles
  • Highest Elevation: 12,718 feet
  • Elevation Gain: 2,900 feet

Two more 12K mountains! 

Hallett Peak is also the place where a large rock slide occurred on June 28, 2022. You can click the link above to see where the slide happened in relation to Hallett Peak. There is also a video below of the slide as it happened!

The climb up Flattop Mountain is steep but not tricky terrain-wise. But, again, the altitude and exposure make this a more challenging hike.

On this hike, you will get views of Dream Lake, Longs Peak, Bierstadt Lake, Emerald Lake, Sprague Lake, and Glacier Basin.

Higher up, you will get lovely views of Tyndall Glacier.

The nice thing about Flattop mountain is the trail near the top levels off so you can catch your breath and enjoy the views.

You can see many of the taller mountains in Rocky Mountain National Park from the top of Flattop Mountain.

The trail to Hallett Peak is at the top of the last steep section of the trail. The hike is less than a mile. Hallett Peak is about 400 feet taller than Flattop Mountain. You will pass Tyndall Glacier, sitting on the ridgeline to the Peak. 

The hike to the top is more rugged than Flattop Mountian, but it isn’t bad, considering you are about to step on the peak of a mountain 12,700 feet tall!

Here is a video of the recent rock slide.

21. Hiking to Keyhole and Longs Peak

Longs Peak is the tallest of all the mountains in the Park. Many people have died attempting to climb this mountain; these include falls, tumbling rocks, elevation sickness, exposure, and lightning strikes. There are over 5,000 feet of elevation gain.

Longs Peak is not a hike; it’s a mountaineering venture. The peak is the highest in Rocky Mountain National Park at 14,259 feet.

Even the hike to the Keyhole is challenging. 

We will not discuss the routes here. But there is information in the video below and a pdf document in the downloadable zip file.

22. Hiking to Ouzel Falls

  • Trail Difficulty: Difficult 
  • Park Location: Wild Basin Trailhead
  • Roundtrip Length: 10.0 miles
  • Highest Elevation: 10,000 feet
  • Elevation Gain: 1,700 feet

Ouzel Falls and Lake are a bit out of the way compared to the other hikes in this article.

The Wild Basin Trailhead is near Meeker Park. 

Besides visiting Ouzel Falls, a series of three falls, you will also see Copeland Falls and Calypso Falls or Cascades.

The video below has some great views of the falls.

Ouzel Lake is quite a ways down the trail; the lake is flanked by 13,000-foot Mount Copeland and Mahana Peak. 

The Greenback Cutthroat Trout lives in Ouzel Lake, so you will likely see anglers here. However, park regulations mark this lake as catch and release only.

23. Hiking to Loch Vale

  • Trail Difficulty: Moderate
  • Park Location: Glacier Gorge Trailhead
  • Roundtrip Length: 5.8 miles
  • Highest Elevation: 10,200 feet
  • Elevation Gain: 1,050 feet

You will pass by Alberta Falls and Mill Lake to reach the Loch. When you get to Longs Peak Trail, head toward Black Lake.

About 2.5 miles in, you will come to Loch Vale Trail. As you climb up toward the Loch, a cascading stream will parallel the trail.

You will reach the lake shortly, a little less than a mile.

The lake is subalpine but still has views of several mountains over and nearly 13,000 feet in elevation as a backdrop. 

You can continue on the trail here, as Timberline Falls and Sky Pond explained earlier.

We will finish up the hiking Rocky Mountain National Park series with a couple of easy hikes.

24. Hiking the Sprague Lake Loop Hike

  • Trail Difficulty: Easy
  • Park Location: Sprague Lake Trailhead
  • Roundtrip Length: 1.0 miles
  • Highest Elevation: 8700 feet
  • Elevation Gain: Negligible

The trail surface around Sprague Lake is, for the most part, level, wide, and packed. The trail is also wheelchair accessible and has many places to sit and enjoy the lake views. 

Mountain views surround the lake, so there is incredible scenery, no matter where you are. 

Because of how accessible and easy this trail is, it can become quite busy and loud. Nevertheless, there is something peaceful to me looking over a mountain lake, especially with huge bare rock mountains as a backdrop.

25. Hiking the Alluvial Fan Trail

  • Trail Difficulty: Easy
  • Park Location: East Alluvial Fan Trailhead off Endovalley Road
  • Roundtrip Length: 0.5 miles
  • Highest Elevation: 8700 feet
  • Elevation Gain: 150

A flood in 1982 broke a dam and created the alluvial fan depositing thousands of cubic yards of rock and debris down the Roaring River. 

The trail parallels the debris field but is smooth and has a gradual include. It is perfect for families with little kids, and the trail is wheelchair accessible. 

Even though this is a hectic trail, there is still room for you to pack a lunch and picnic along the creek or walk up the boulder field to Horseshoe Falls to enjoy your lunch or snack break.

Don’t Forget the Download with Maps and Guides

Click below to receive PDF copies of the RMNP map, campground map plus six other trail guides for hikes within the Rocky Mountain National Park. 

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