Bear Lake, Rocky Mountain National Park

4.7
#1 of 36 in Parks in Rocky Mountain National Park
The second-largest natural freshwater lake in Utah, Bear Lake has been nicknamed Caribbean of the Rockies because of the piercing turquoise color of its water. Limestone deposits reflecting in the water are the cause of the distinctive blue color of this 250,000-year-old lake. This lake and its surrounding area offer recreational activities year-round, from fly-fishing and Jet-Skiing in the water, to skiing on the snowy nearby slopes in the colder months. You can also spot plenty of wildlife and birds here, and the area is known for its raspberries. To visit Bear Lake on your trip to Rocky Mountain National Park, use our Rocky Mountain National Park trip maker .
Improve this listing »
Create an itinerary including Bear Lake
map
© OpenMapTiles © OpenStreetMap contributors
Bear Lake Reviews
Rate this attraction
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5
1,452 reviews
Google
4.8
TripAdvisor
  • Just amazing. You drive up to the lake, then hike all around. This lake is only a few hundred feet away from the parking area. Elderly and wheelchair bound folks could make it to the lake. You can wal...  more »
  • Anyone that visits Estes Park and Rocky mountain National Park must include Bear Lake on the agenda! Nestled in the Rockies with great views of Hallet Peak and Flat Top mountain, Bear Lake is a lovely...  more »
  • Bear Lake is honestly overrated. I visited Sprague Lake, Emerald Lake, Nymph Lake, and Dream Lake on my trip to Colorado, and I would honestly rank Bear Lake last on that list. It is a short loop, and...  more »
Google
  • The drive is so scenic to this amazing lake. If you are planning to go in winter as I did, make sure you have sturdy boots. The ice is very slippery unlike other spots. There are few trails where you can further venture out from the bear creek trail to experience fresh pristine snow on the mountains. Summer would be an ideal time to visit Bear Lake as you get to go on the Trail Ridge Road which connects the Bear Lake to the Grand Lake. Going on Thanksgiving did not get us disappointed. In fact it was mesmerizing and the crowd is lot less compared to the peak summer time. The daily pass to this place is 20$, weekly pass for 30$ while the annual pass is for 60$. Smoking is illegal as well as using the drone to capture the scenic place is banned. Do visit Estes park which comes on the way to the Bear Lake. Though this is not the time when snow starts, be prepared to drive on a snowy road. There was an unexpected snow when we got back from the Rockies. It can be a daunting and risky experience to drive in that weather. Be prepared to enjoy the scenic place and get awestruck.
  • Great view. You can visit this place any time in the year. Beautiful Alpine lake in Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado State.
  • A must see when in Rocky Mountain National Park!
  • one of my favorite places to go
  • A picturesque lake in an easily accessed area. You won't be rewarded by quite the same level of views that can be found deeper into the park, but Bear Lake is still worth a quick stroll on the very well maintained trail around the lake.

Plan your trip to Rocky Mountain National Park

  • Get a personalized plan

    A complete day-by-day itinerary
    based on your preferences
  • Customize it

    Refine your plan. We'll find the
    best routes and schedules
  • Manage it

    Everything in one place.
    Everyone on the same page.

Plans to Bear Lake by other users

9 days in Colorado BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES October, teens, kids, popular PREFERENCES: October, teens, kids ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 1 day in Rocky Mountain National Park BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES October, kids, relaxing, wildlife, popular PREFERENCES: October, kids, relaxing, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 41 days in Denver, Alamosa & Colorado Springs BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES October, popular PREFERENCES: October ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 6 days in Denver BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES October, popular PREFERENCES: October ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 5 days in Denver BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES September, popular PREFERENCES: September ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 8 days in Rocky Mountain National Park BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES June, outdoors, historic sites, museums, wildlife, popular PREFERENCES: June, outdoors, historic sites, museums, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 12 days in Colorado BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES September, popular PREFERENCES: September ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 3 days in Boulder BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES October, popular PREFERENCES: October ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 4 days in United States BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES October, popular PREFERENCES: October ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 5 days in Estes Park BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES October, popular PREFERENCES: October ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 8 days in Evergreen BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES September, outdoors, relaxing, historic sites, museums, shopping, wildlife, popular PREFERENCES: September, outdoors, relaxing, historic sites, museums, shopping, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 9 days in Estes Park BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES August, teens, popular PREFERENCES: August, teens ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium
View more plans