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Lily Lake and Ridge Loop

Intermediate
 3.8 (14) RECOMMENDED ROUTE

A quick loop right off of the peak-to-peak highway near Estes that offers a taste of RMNP's bounty.


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Map Key

1.1

Miles

1.8

KM

90%

Runnable

9,089' 2,770 m

High

8,922' 2,720 m

Low

168' 51 m

Up

166' 51 m

Down

6%

Avg Grade (3°)

25%

Max Grade (14°)

Dogs No Dogs

Features Birding · Fall Colors · Lake · Views · Wildflowers · Wildlife

Overview

This is a great way to experience a taste of RMNP's bountiful scenery, flora and fauna. It's an easy drive (or shuttle ride) from Estes Park and the trail is located directly off of the highway.

Runner Notes

Any trail from the Lily Lake trailhead is bound to be packed during the prime tourist season. Don't expect to put down any PR's running this loop, unless you're wearing snowshoes.

Description

From the Lily Lake TH, start out on the Lily Lake Trail in a clockwise direction. This section of trail offers a nice, flat warm-up with stunning views of Longs Peak (14,259') and Mount Meeker (13,911') and, of course, the serene Lily Lake. Once you've reached the opposite side of the lake, look for the Lily Ridge Trail to branch off to the left - take it.

Lily Ridge Trail switchbacks its way up the ridge on the northern shore of the lake before flattening out and descending to the lake's eastern shore. This trail could prove a slight challenge for some but the views down on the lake are worth it if you're willing to put in the extra work.

Once you descend back to the lake, you'll be back at the trailhead.

Flora & Fauna

The wildflowers around Lily Lake are stunning in the spring after the snow melts. Keep an eye out for deer, birds of prey and the [not so] occasional chipmunk.

Contacts

Shared By:

Brian Smith

Trail Ratings

  3.8 from 14 votes

#5

in Estes Park

#2903

Overall
  3.8 from 14 votes
5 Star
14%
4 Star
50%
3 Star
36%
2 Star
0%
1 Star
0%
Recommended Route Rankings

#5

in Estes Park

#388

in Colorado

#2,903

Overall
39 Views Last Month
3,351 Since Jun 17, 2015
Intermediate

29%
7%
50%
7%
7%
0%

Photos

View of Longs Peak, looking west from Lily Lake. Lily Lake Trail, Rocky Mountain National Park. Estes Park, Colorado.
Aug 10, 2019 near Estes Park, CO
Lily Lake Trail, Rocky Mountain National Park. Estes Park, Colorado.
Aug 10, 2019 near Estes Park, CO
Rainy this day but great views here.
Jun 9, 2016 near Estes Park, CO
Lily Lake Trail, Rocky Mountain National Park. Estes Park, Colorado.
Aug 10, 2019 near Estes Park, CO
Overlooking Lily Lake from Lily Trail
Jul 9, 2020 near Estes Park, CO
Longs Peak from Lily Ridge Trail.
Jul 9, 2020 near Estes Park, CO

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Check-Ins

Jul 10, 2017
Scott Lutz
Great "workout" loop. Did 3x. Ridge part of the loop is about .25 mile to summit and then .25 back down to lake. Descent has a series of stone stairs 3.5mi