Trail Conditions

NOTE - Spring conditions exist on all the trails now - snow becomes soft and sticky and lakes are unsafe to walk on. USE CAUTION WHEN HIKING.

These Trail Conditions reports are the viewpoints of the submitters, whether park staff, volunteers, or visitors. Conditions can change rapidly in the mountains. Use these reports only as guidelines. Be prepared for varying weather and trail conditions.

Due to the September 2013 Flood, missing foot bridges, uneven trail surfaces, unstable slopes, falling trees due to soil moisture, rutted trails, damaged water bars and steps, standing water, difficult water crossings, and missing directional signs could be encountered. Most of Rocky Mountain National Park is designated wilderness, where self-reliance and adventure are expected. Hikers should be prepared to take responsibility for their own actions; search and rescue may be delayed. Be prepared to stay overnight even if you are a day hiker. Hiking poles may be helpful on uneven trails. Route finding skills may be required. Carry a map and compass and other backcountry travel essentials. Hike at your own risk.

 
Trail around right (north) side of Dream Lake

Trail around right side (north) side of Dream Lake on Wednesday 4/29/15

NPS/Jon Olsen

Enjoy one of the many hikes in Rocky!
A great many of the visitors to Rocky Mountain National Park hike the variety of scenic trails. There are many outstanding opportunities to hike, snowshoe, ski or ride during the winter on one of Rocky's trails. You can stop by a park visitor center to obtain current conditions and recommendations. Remember, safety is your responsibility.

What's your trail conditions report? Please email e-mail us, call the Information Office, 970-586-1206, or stop by a park visitor center.

Trail conditions reports help everyone. We need them year-round, and this spring it's more important than ever as hikers encounter possible impacts from last fall's flood. Thanks very much for your report!

 

Trail: Longs Peak
For current conditions, check the Longs Peak Conditions Report.

Trail: September 2013 Flood Damage
For current trail conditions as a result of the September 2013 Flood, please visit Flood Impacts and Closures.

Trail: Crater Trail
The trail will remain closed for the remainder of 2014. The park is considering closing it permanently - read more.

Below are some pictures of recent hiking

 
Twin Sisters 3_30 b 196X348

Trail to Twin Sisters on March 30th - across the flood damaged area

NPS/Austin Tumas

3/30/15
Twin Sisters

Mixed ice and packed snow along with dry spots.Because of the September 2013 flood, hard to find trail in some spots and we had to make our own trail. Pure ice near the summit.Used traction devices. Also very windy at the top, so bring extra layers.
By: Volunteer
 
combined 4_29

Left - Nymph Lake
Right - Track leading down to Emerald Lake

Both pictures taken on Wednesday April 29th

NPS/Jon Olsen

 
5/1/15
Fern Lake trailhead to The Pool
As of 5/1/2015 the road is open to the trailhead. Only very occasional patches of snow in the trees with none on trail. Waterfall at "jaws" is very nice! Consequently the trail in that area is under water in several stretches. Adequate footwear - i.e. hiking boots - will allow you to wade through most of it as it is not that deep. Gently skirt any deeper water. Creeping barberry is in bloom in profusion along the trail.
By Visitor

5/1/15
Chasm Falls (Old Fall River Road)
Road is clear and dry to the falls. Falls are "great" right now.
By Visitor

4/29/15
Bear Lake to Emerald Lake
The trail from Bear Lake Trailhead to Emerald Lake is well packed all the way and very easy to follow. This route is icy slick in the morning and by mid-day becomes slushy slick when the temperature warms. No matter what the weather conditions, this trip is quite slick the entire distance.
Bear to Nymph is very well packed with portions of the trail almost totally melted out. All Lakes on this hike are ice and snow covered but the ice is not to be trusted and a route that avoids crossing the lakes should always be used.
From Nymph to Dream the trail is well packed but slick. Going beyond Dream Lake the visitor can select one of two routes on the way to Emerald Lake. There is a nice track on the left (south) side of the lake and also a track around the right (north) side of the lake. Both are well defined, but the left side track does have less ups and downs. On a trip to Emerald Lake one route could be used on the way up and for variety the other can be used when coming down.
Both of the routes join just above Dream Lake and continue on a well defined trail to Emerald Lake. There is great snow cover all the way and this trip makes for a very rewarding spring trip. The snow is quite slick along the entire route, so appropriate equipment should be used.

Suggested Equipment:
Sturdy boots with traction devices (the snow can be very wet and soak through light shoes)
Snowshoes are a good alternant choice as they provide excellent stability on the slick snow
Trekking poles are extremely helpful
Sun protection (sun screen and good sun glasses)
Clothing layers to adjust to changeable weather conditions
By Volunteer

4/28/15
Flattop Mountain

Snowshoes, gaiter, hiking poles and traction devices recommended.The trail is difficult to find above tree line.
By Visitor

4/26/15
East Inlet

95% Snow free up to Devil's Staircase. Easy hiking but recommend traction devices and trekking poles to go higher than Devil's Staircase.
By Park Ranger

4/20/15
Sprague Lake

Trail around lake is uneven but one may do it in just hiking boots as it is packed down but fairly icy.Poles would be recommended.
By Visitor

4/20/15
The Loch from Glacier Gorge

Trail is icy but packed to junction to Mills Lake.Need snow shoes after the junction.Can do trail to junction in boots but poles are recommended for stability.
By Visitor




 

Falling trees are ever-present hazards when traveling in the forest. Be aware of your surroundings. Dead trees can fall without warning!

Did You Know?