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Emerald Lake

 4.7 (199)

Length


3.3 Miles 5.4 Kilometers


661' 201 m

Ascent

-651' -198 m

Descent

7%

Avg Grade (4°)

19%

Max Grade (11°)

10,104' 3,080 m

High

9,476' 2,888 m

Low

Shared By Brian Smith

Conditions


All Clear 13 days ago
Dry History

Getting forecast...

An easy to moderate out and back that culminates at views of Emerald Lake.

Brian Smith

Dogs No Dogs

Features Birding · Fall Colors · Lake · River/Creek · Swimming · Views · Wildflowers · Wildlife

Family Friendly This hike is short enough and gradual enough to bring along young kids. You can turn around whenever you want and there are many great picnic sport along the way!

Overview

This is a short, fairly easy out-and-back that features Dream and Emerald Lakes.

Description

From the Bear Lake trailhead, follow the signs for Dream Lake onto this well-traveled, asphalt-sealed trail. Hiking is very easygoing along the Dream Lake Trail as it contours at very mellow grades up the slope.

Just over 1.5 miles from the TH, you'll reach Nymph Lake, a picturesque mountain lake that makes for a good place to take in the surrounding peaks. Continuing up the trail, you'll eventually cross Tyndall Creek and come to a junction with Lake Haiyaha Trail. Hike past this intersection to reach Dream Lake.

Dream Lake is a spectacular, narrow lake that sits in a drainage on the rugged eastern slope of Flattop Mountain. The lake makes for a good resting point on this hike. Once you've gotten your fill at Dream Lake, continue hiking along the trail for another mile until you reach Emerald Lake. This lake is a beautiful sight to see as it sits nestled into the rugged western face of Flattop Mountain.

From Emerald Lake, turn around and hike back the way you came to the Bear Lake TH.

Flora & Fauna

This hike follows Tyndall Creek up towards its headwaters. Look for riparian vegetation typical of this environment including various willows, mountain alder, and water birch with dark-colored bark. In a few places, blue spruce may grow near streams and sometimes hybridize with Engelmann spruce.

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Your Check-Ins

Check-Ins

Sep 22, 2018
Marta J
Amazing 3 lakes, pretty strenuous at times but expected. Took 1:45 on our way up and 40 mins on our way down. Had a lunch/snack at Dream Lake.
Sep 16, 2018
Amy L
Sep 14, 2018
Ross Therrien
Sep 13, 2018
Missy Barger
Sep 12, 2018
Peter Kuo
Sep 12, 2018
Tess O'Connor
Sep 12, 2018
Catherine O.
Sep 8, 2018
Natalia Mendiola

Trail Ratings

  4.7 from 199 votes

#2

in Bear Lake

#7

Overall
  4.7 from 199 votes
5 Star
76%
4 Star
21%
3 Star
3%
2 Star
1%
1 Star
0%
Rankings

#2

in Bear Lake

#3

in Colorado

#7

Overall
1,433 Views Last Month
21,337 Since Jan 8, 2015
Easy/Intermediate Easy/Intermediate

8%
61%
25%
5%
1%
0%

Photos

In winter, go with snowshoes. Incredibly beautiful. And go on a weekday when there are very few people. Rent gear including warm clothes at Estes Park Mountain Shop and ask for Zion. Feb 2, 2017
Chad DuBois
Roaming
Chad DuBois   Roaming
If you don't mind the hordes of people on this trail during the summer months, there is a great payoff at the end. Emerald lake is visually fantastic for such a short hike. Get there early! Aug 24, 2017

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