Snowshoeing or cross-country skiing during the depths of Colorado’s winter is the most enjoyable way to savor the Bear Lake Trail experience. However, summer and fall aren’t too bad if you can wake up early and beat the crowds. This is the perfect hike for families – especially those with young children!
Trailhead: Bear Lake Trailhead
Activities: Hiking, Skiing, Snowshoeing
Closest City / Town: Estes Park, Colorado
Driving Directions: The Bear Lake Trailhead is located at the end of Bear Lake Road in Rocky Mountain National Park. The easiest way to access Bear Lake Road is by entering Rocky Mountain National Park from the east at the Beaver Meadows Entrance Station. You will need a National Parks Pass to enter. If you’re traveling here during the summer, parking at the lake often fills by early morning. Roads are congested. The park’s free shuttle bus is there to help! You can ride the shuttle to the edge of Bear Lake and begin your hike.
Hiking Distance: 0.6 mile loop
Description: Rocky Mountain National Park is very busy during the summer. The Bear Lake Trail is no exception. We prefer to snowshoe in the area during the winter to avoid the crowds. This hike is an excellent adventure for little ones who can’t tackle a longer journey. The 0.6 mile loop wraps around Bear Lake and can be enjoyed year-round.
Worth Noting: Keep a keen eye out for wildlife. We spotted a group of coyotes last time we were there snowshoeing.