The hidden gem hikes of breathtaking RMNP   

 

     One of the advantages of living in Estes Park is the close proximity to amazing RMNP hiking. It has happened more than once or twice that I have gone for an after-work hike just to stretch the legs and enjoy a sunset. Bierstadt Lake is just perfect for this purpose, or any time you want to do a shorter hike with beautiful scenery.

 

      It starts off with a somewhat gradual climb through switchbacks on the side of the mountain. Once you have plateaued, you are hiking through a forested area with the smells we all have come to love, pine needle covered trails. The finale comes when you arrive at the lake, grasses peeking through the water and mountain views only The Rockies can provide. I consider it a relatively easy hike with a grand payback, one of the sweeter RMNP hikes. I like to go to Claire's on the park for dinner afterwards, located in downtown Estes Park.

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There is a certain serenity that comes with immersing yourself in nature. I wanted to share another gorgeous experience within the RMNP hikes I have enjoyed.

 

      Recently, I went on a hike to Lawn Lake (in Rocky Mountain National Park of course) and I have to say it was absolutely stunning. The initial mile of the hike is probably the hardest part, but after that it becomes easier and less steep for the next 5 and 1/3 miles.  There is dramatic evidence of the potential power of mother nature on the river banks and eventually you are rewarded with lovely views of Lawn Lake itself. rocky mountain real estate,Carriage Hills Real Estate Estes Park,Homes For Sale Estes Park,Estes Park Real Estate,carriage hills,realtor Estes Park,Move to Estes Park,

      Many folks get to the lake and relax a bit, only then to turn around and head back home.  I can't say I blame them as it is a decent workout, but I have a small suggestion with big rewards. If you are at Lawn Lake and have the time, I suggest going just a bit past the lake, where you will climb a bit, but also end up with spectacular views of the lake a valley below.  To get the full experience keep going another 1 1/2 miles past Lawn Lake and you will arrive at Crystal Lakes. This is basically at the doorstep to the Continental Divide, where if you follow signs to "The Saddle" you will be looking at the west side of Rocky Mountain National Park. The overall experience is one of the gems of the RMNP hikes around Estes Park I have been on and I tell friends it is worthy of the effort. If you see it once, you will never forget it. I even posted a few more pictures of this on google, click here to see those!

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Lily Lake is a FREE Hike close to Estes Park with rewarding views. That first sentence is what you need to know.

 

     Although Lily Lake is not officially in Rocky Mountain National Park, it does appear on the official park map. The hike isn't that bad overall, but definitely not the easiest hike in the area. 

 

     It does have a decent climb that will give you a workout, but once you reach the top, you get the views that remind me of flying in a plane rather than hiking a mountain - breathtaking scenery for what seems like miles. It is also free to hike with it being in the Roosevelt National Forest, so parking can be tough on weekends in the summer. Arrive early and enjoy the views!

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Jim Idler REALTOR Estes Park Real Estate agent