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Cub Lake Loop

Intermediate
 4.4 (66) RECOMMENDED ROUTE

A loop from the open meadows of Moraine Park up to Cub Lake and back along the Big Thompson River.


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Map Key

6.0

Miles

9.7

KM

94%

Runnable

8,685' 2,647 m

High

8,063' 2,458 m

Low

635' 193 m

Up

633' 193 m

Down

4%

Avg Grade (2°)

21%

Max Grade (12°)

Dogs No Dogs

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

Overview

This run incorporates a great mixture of open meadows, scenic rivers and lakes, and mountain views. The first half of the loop does have one short and steep climb to Cub Lake, but otherwise the trail is gradual and well-maintained.

Description

Beginning at the Cub Lake Trailhead, start the run by following the Cub Lake Trail to the south and across the Big Thompson River. You'll continue south along the western side of Moraine Park before turning westward at a junction with South Lateral Moraine Trail.

The trail's grade will remain very manageable as it contours to the west, just north of Sheep Mountain. Once the trail turns southward (left), the grade steepens drastically. This is the short but steep approach to Cub Lake.

Cub Lake makes for a great rest stop or picnic destination. Enjoy the richness of your surroundings before continuing on Cub Lake Trail. The trail descends from the lake for just under a mile to a junction with Fern Lake Trail at the Pool.

From the Pool at the junction take a right onto Fern Lake Trail and descend alongside 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.

Once you reach the Fern Lake Trailhead, continue on the Fern Lake Road for approximately one mile. This road will loop you back around to the Cub Lake Trailhead to finish the run.

Flora & Fauna

Depending on the season, herds of elk and mule deer can be seen grazing in the meadows at Moraine Park.

Contacts

Shared By:

Kristen Arendt

Trail Ratings

  4.4 from 66 votes

#1

in Moraine Park

#88

Overall
  4.4 from 66 votes
5 Star
44%
4 Star
50%
3 Star
5%
2 Star
2%
1 Star
0%
Recommended Route Rankings

#1

in Moraine Park

#29

in Colorado

#88

Overall
195 Views Last Month
6,125 Since Sep 24, 2015
Intermediate

4%
0%
82%
2%
12%
0%

Photos

September 5, 2013 - Elk Rutt
Jan 28, 2015 near Estes Park, CO
Great view of the Big Thompson River.
Jul 20, 2016 near Estes Park, CO
Big Thompson River Waterfall
Apr 16, 2018 near Estes Park, CO
Cub Lake
Aug 18, 2015 near Estes Park, CO
Cub Lake has an awesome Mountain View!
Apr 16, 2018 near Estes Park, CO
Views of Cub Lake on July 18, 2016
Jul 20, 2016 near Estes Park, CO

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Current Trail Conditions

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Minor Issues 35 days ago See History
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Check-Ins

Mar 17, 2020
Matt H
Hike through a canyon up to Fern Lake. Beautiful views at the lake. Decent views up to the lake.
Mar 17, 2020
Emma H-p
Snowy from the pond to the pool marker. You need spikes for that portion. Otherwise it was gorgeous! 6mi — 2h 46m
Jun 28, 2019
Matt Oldenburg
Jun 18, 2019
Emily Knapp
6mi — 1h 45m
Oct 11, 2017
Gabriel Erso
Amazing loop! A bit icy past Cub Lake until you turn back east on Fern Lake Trail. 6mi
May 21, 2016
Dave Kruse