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Hiking & Walking: Colorado > Rocky Mountain National Park

Quick Facts

Fern Lake Trail

Beginning Elevation: 8,155 Feet (2542.1 Meters)
Difficulty: Easy to The Pool
Difficulty: Difficult to Odessa Lake
Elevation: 8,355 Feet (2604.4 Meters) at The Pool
Elevation: 10,020 Feet (3123.4 Meters) at Odessa Lake
Elevation Gain: 200 Feet (62.3 Meters)
Length: 2.5 Miles (4.17 Kilometers) to The Pool
Length: 4.4 Miles (7.33 Kilometers) to Odessa Lake
Length: 3.8 Miles (6.33 Kilometers) to Fern Lake
TI Topo Maps: Rocky Mountain National Park, #200




Satellite and Topo Map




General Description

This trail begins at the end of Moraine Park Road and leads past The Pool, then on to Fern Falls, Fern Lake and Odessa Lake. The Pool is a turbulent water pocket formed below the confluences of Spruce and Fern Creeks with the Big Thompson River. The lower portion of this trail is normally accessible for hiking, year-round. During the summer, the trail begins at the end of the Moraine Park Road, at the Fern Lake Trailhead. The trail is relatively flat along the Big Thompson River up to The Pool. Look for beaver-cut aspen, waterfalls on the cliffs, and the Arch Rocks.

This lower end of this trail may be combined with the Cub Lake Trail for a six mile loop by taking a connecting trail southeast from The Pool, back toward Cub Lake. The trail becomes more difficult as it climbs up past Fern Falls and Fern Lake to Odessa Lake.

Fern Creek, Fern Lake, Spruce Lake and Odessa Lake offer catch-and-release fishing. Before fishing, check with the Park Service for license requirements, size and possession limits and other regulations.

Directions from Estes Park: Travel west on Hwy 36 past the Beaver Meadows Entrance Station Bear Lake Road. Take this road south (left) to the turn--off for the Cub Lake and Fern Lake Trailheads and Moraine Park. The trailhead is about two miles on this road.



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Recreation Opportunities
Activity Remarks On Site
ICON Fishing Fern Creek, Fern Lake, Spruce Lake and Odessa Lake offer catch-and-release fishing.
Yes
ICON Hiking & Walking Fern Lake Trail
Yes
ICON Winter Hiking Lighter snowfall on the east side of the park leaves some low elevation trails open for hiking, without the aid of skis or snowshoes. Before each outing, check with park rangers for local snow conditions and current avalanche hazards.
Yes



Related Activities
Cub Lake Trail - A park favorite, this hike to a mountain pond travels through woods that blaze with color in the fall. It is often accessible for hiking year-round.

Moraine Park Museum Campground - Moraine Park is a large campground on the east side of the Park, off Highway 36, west of the town of Estes Park. It offers access to several nearby trails.

Moraine Park Visitor Center - The Moraine Park Museum is located off the Bear Lake Road, at the east end of Moraine Park. It offers interpretive exhibits and is wheelchair accessible.



More Information

Visitor Information:

Headquarters: Rocky Mountain National Park, 1000 Highway 36 , Estes Park, CO, 80517-8397, Phone: 970-586-1206, Fax: 970-586-1256, TTY: 970-586-1319

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