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    Bear and Emerald Lakes Hike

    This reflects the 10Adventures difficulty rating for each route. We aim to keep ratings consistent across regions.
    This reflects the estimated time the majority of users will take on this trail. If you are slower, add time to the top-end figure. If you are fast, then you may complete this route faster than this time range.
    This reflects the return distance of this route as measured by the GPS file.
    6.1 km
    This reflects the total elevation gained throughout this route as measured by the GPS file. This includes all ascents and descents, and is higher than what is quoted in most route guides, which simply measure the distance between the starting-point and high-point of the route.
    224 m
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    Directions to Trailhead

    On your next trip to the Rocky Mountain National Park, add the Bear and Emerald Lakes Hike to your adventure list. This path will guide its hikers to some of the most picturesque lakes in the high-country. Suitable for kids and amateur hikers, this excursion is a crowd favorite.

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    Route Description for Bear and Emerald Lakes Hike

    The Bear and Emerald Lakes Hike is a must do! Escape the stressors of the real world and reconnect with nature along this scenic mountain adventure. Hike around the perimeter of the Rocky Mountain National Park's most popular lake, Bear Lake. If you venture this path in the winter or autumn months, wear microspikes to help safely navigate the icy terrain. Note that visitors are required to purchase a park pass to utilize the trails.

    Begin your journey along the Bear and Emerald Lakes Trail from the Bear Lake Trailhead. From here, track counterclockwise around the alpine lake ringed by pine trees and flanked by snow-capped peaks. Hike around the accessible perimeter trail, and once you complete the loop, track south along the Nymph Lake Trail. Walk the busy route up to Nymph Lake and up to Dream Lake. Dream Lake is one of the most photographed destinations in the park, so be sure to snap a picture! Revel in the scenery that sits in the foreground of the looming Hallett Peak. Continue hiking and ascend the path up to Emerald Lake.

    Admire the grandeur of Hallett Peak and the encompassing towering cliffs. When you are finished appreciating the scenery, retrace your steps along the path all the way back to the Bear Lake Trailhead, marking the end of your journey.

    Getting to the Bear and Emerald Lakes Hike Trailhead

    The Bear and Emerald Lakes Hike departs from the Bear Lake Trailhead off Bear Lake Road.

    Route Information

    • Backcountry Campground


    • When to do


    • Pets allowed


    • Family friendly


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    • Crowd Levels


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    Bear and Emerald Lakes Hike Elevation Graph

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