Adventure Projects is hiring an Android engineer to join us in Boulder, CO
Hiking Project Logo

Fern Lake Trail

 4.0 (20)

Length


3.5 Miles 5.7 Kilometers


1,341' 409 m

Ascent

-27' -8 m

Descent

7%

Avg Grade (4°)

24%

Max Grade (13°)

9,466' 2,885 m

High

8,151' 2,485 m

Low

Shared By Brian Smith

Conditions


All Clear 15 days ago
Dry History

Getting forecast...

A two-faced (easy, then very hard) trail that leads to a stunning waterfall and serene alpine lake.

Brian Smith

Dogs No Dogs

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

Description

From the Fern Lake Trailhead, begin along the relatively flat trail paralleling the Big Thompson River. The canyon through which this trail runs is stunning - the northern wall rises abruptly over 1,000 feet above the valley floor.

Just under two miles from the trailhead, the Fern Lake Trail crosses the river and is met by the Moraine Park Cub Lake Trail from the south. Near this intersection there is a bridge over the Big Thompson River that is not far from the Arch Rocks or Old Forest Inn campgrounds. The bridge provides a beautiful look at the Big Thompson River as it passes over a small waterfall and under this bridge, coursing out into the meadow in Moraine Park. Enjoy the view down the river!

From here, the gradual meandering character of the trail is now replaced by steepening grades as it heads up the Fern Creek Drainage.

After an initial contouring ascent, the trail begins a series of switchbacks as the terrain steepens. After two large switchbacks the Fern Creek Falls, which you've surely been hearing, will come into view. Take a moment, or many moments, to enjoy the sheer power of the cascades before hiking up the final portion of trail to Fern Lake.

Contacts

You & This Trail


Rate Quality


   Clear Rating

Rate Difficulty

Share This Trail

Your Check-Ins

Check-Ins

Jul 10, 2018
Whitney Manasjan
3.5mi
Jul 2, 2018
Jamie Elizabeth
Beautiful. Path is rocky and steep.
Jul 1, 2018
Benjamin DeYoung
Great easy hike, stayed at group site, beautiful lake.
May 25, 2018
Maria Verven
spectacular waterfall 2/3 up; beautiful lake at the end. totally worth the uphill trek 2/3rds into the hike 7mi
Jan 15, 2018
Erika Nicole
Sep 9, 2017
Tamara Mccord
Sep 3, 2017
Josh Littlefield
Continued on to Odessa Lake, and around the lake to the far shore. River flowing well for Sept 3. 9.8mi
Aug 27, 2017
Lisa Yeh

Trail Ratings

  4.0 from 20 votes

#1

in Moraine Park

#3607

Overall
  4.0 from 20 votes
5 Star
25%
4 Star
50%
3 Star
25%
2 Star
0%
1 Star
0%
Rankings

#1

in Moraine Park

#271

in Colorado

#3,607

Overall
122 Views Last Month
1,070 Since Jan 19, 2015
Intermediate Intermediate

6%
17%
50%
17%
11%
0%

0 Comments

Hiking Project is part of the REI Co-op family,
where a life outdoors is a life well lived.

Shop REI Hiking