The Loch Vale Hike

Glacier Gorge Trailhead - Search Nearby - Added by Kyle Frost

This relatively short hike in Rocky Mountain National Park rewards hikers with a spectacular lake and alpine backdrop. Fantastic spot at sunrise!6 miles roundtrip. 1000ft elevation gain.

The trail starts at the Glacier Gorge trailhead along the road to Bear Lake. After hiking for just under a mile, you'll pass Alberta Falls and continue up the trail through the gorge. At about 2 miles you'll reach a clear junction, with trails towards Mills Lake, Lake Haiyaha, and The Loch. Take the Loch trail and climb up through some switchbacks until arriving at the lake.

The main trail continues to the right, but make your way to wherever you feel is the best vantage point of the lake, the views are wonderful. There's a small 'penninsula' (pictured) that is accessed by veering to the left as soon as you reach the lake.

Distance

6 Miles RT

Elevation Gain

1000 ft Gain

Type

Out-and-Back

Activities

Hiking

Lake
Scenic

Nearby Lodging

Estes Park KOA

Estes Park, Colorado

From $40/night

Boulder A-Lodge Camping

Boulder, Colorado

From $149/night

Boulder A-Lodge Cabin

Boulder, Colorado

From $39/night

Boulder A-Lodge Hostel

Boulder, Colorado

We want to acknowledge and thank the past, present, and future generations of all Native Nations and Indigenous Peoples whose ancestral lands we travel, explore, and play on. Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures and follow local regulations. Please explore responsibly!

Reviews

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Overall rating: 

Easy to Moderate, great trail!

Trail was well marked and only crowded in the first mile to Alberta Falls. After that we basically had the trail to ourselves. Still hiked through some snow near the lake but totally manageable and the views were still lovely.

R F

almost 2 years ago

Amazing View

Easy enough for a beginner plus amazing views

Absolutely love Loch Vale

The Loch is always a fun hike. Definitely consider hiking around the right side of the lake and checking out either Andrews Canyon or Timberline Falls with Sky Pond beyond.

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