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Brainard Lake Recreation Area

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Gems in Brainard Lake Recreation Area - 2

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gem Favorite Isabelle Lake surrounded by the Indian Peaks - stunning.

Lake Isabelle

(3) Nederland, CO
gem Favorite View of Long Lake while taking the southern route to Lake Isabelle.

Long Lake

(11) Nederland, CO

Recommended Routes in Brainard Lake Recreation Area - 6

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Favorite Early morning along the trail
Intermediate

Mitchell Lake Trail Out and Back

5.4 mi 8.7 km 864' Up 263.28 m Up 863' Down 263.16 m Down

Nederland, CO
Favorite Early morning along the trail
Difficult

Mount Audubon

7.7 mi 12.4 km 2,662' Up 811.3 m Up 2,662' Down 811.26 m Down

Nederland, CO
Favorite On the Jean Lunning Trail
Intermediate

Long Lake Loop

3.6 mi 5.8 km 294' Up 89.63 m Up 294' Down 89.48 m Down

Nederland, CO
Favorite Climbing Buchanan Pass on the west side.
Difficult

Pawnee-Buchanan Loop

26.5 mi 42.6 km 6,632' Up 2021.41 m Up 6,615' Down 2016.24 m Down

Nederland, CO
Favorite Alternative route vs taking the road when parking at the Brainard Gateway parking lot.
Intermediate

Brainard Gateway Figure-8

10.1 mi 16.2 km 1,290' Up 393.05 m Up 1,289' Down 393 m Down

Nederland, CO
Favorite February snowshoe to Brainard Lake
Intermediate

Brainard Lake Snowshoe Trail

4.8 mi 7.8 km 468' Up 142.59 m Up 467' Down 142.42 m Down

Nederland, CO

Brainard Lake Recreation Area Hiking

  • 96 Miles 155 Kilometers of Trail
  • 6 Recommended Routes
  • 2 Gems Gems
  • 4 Easy Trails Easy Trails
  • 13 Intermediate Trails Intermediate Trails
  • 6 Difficult Trails Difficult Trails
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Trails in Brainard Lake Recreation Area - 17

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2.1 mi 3.5 km #1Mount Audubon Trail
Intermediate/Difficult
Nederland, CO
Intermediate/Difficult
Nederland, CO
6.9 mi 11.1 km #2Beaver Creek Trail
Intermediate/Difficult
Nederland, CO
Intermediate/Difficult
Nederland, CO
8.0 mi 12.8 km #3Pawnee Pass Trail
Intermediate/Difficult
Nederland, CO
Intermediate/Difficult
Nederland, CO 30 
1.3 mi 2.1 km #4Jean Lunning Trail
Easy/Intermediate
Nederland, CO
Easy/Intermediate
Nederland, CO
0.6 mi 1.0 km #5Niwot Cutoff Trail
Easy/Intermediate
Nederland, CO
Easy/Intermediate
Nederland, CO
2.6 mi 4.3 km #6Niwot Ridge Spur Trail
Intermediate
Nederland, CO
Intermediate
Nederland, CO
2.1 mi 3.3 km #7Isabelle Glacier Trail
Intermediate/Difficult
Nederland, CO
Intermediate/Difficult
Nederland, CO 30 
6.9 mi 11.1 km #8North Sourdough (#835)
Intermediate/Difficult
Nederland, CO
Intermediate/Difficult
Nederland, CO
2.2 mi 3.6 km #9Waldrop Trail (#814)
Intermediate
Nederland, CO
Intermediate
Nederland, CO
1.5 mi 2.4 km #10Wapiti Trail (#816)
Intermediate/Difficult
Nederland, CO
Intermediate/Difficult
Nederland, CO

Photos of Brainard Lake Recreation Area - 95

Hiking Project is built by hikers like you. Add Your Photos

The view from Beaver Creek Trail.
Apr 26, 2015 near Nederland, CO
Isabelle Lake surrounded by the Indian Peaks - stunning.
Nov 7, 2016 near Nederland, CO
Climbing boulders before climbing the peaks.
Nov 7, 2016 near Nederland, CO
Looking toward Pawnee Pass from atop Audubon.
Jul 3, 2017 near Nederland, CO
Early morning along the trail
Sep 6, 2018 near Nederland, CO
Before reaching the switchbacks
Jul 26, 2020 near Nederland, CO
Lake Isabelle
Aug 8, 2020 near Nederland, CO
Lake Isabelle lies hidden in a high, isolated bowl-shaped basin at the top of the South St. Vrain drainage in the Brainard Lake Recreation Area.
Feb 8, 2022 near Nederland, CO