Rocky Mountain National Park, CO: Alberta Falls Hike & Bear Lake

Our first stop after getting to Colorado was heading to Rocky Mountain National Park. Since we were coming from close to sea level (771 ft elevation), we needed to acclimate ourselves to the much higher elevation in the Rockies in preparation for our bigger hikes.


We stopped by the visitor's center and decided to hike to Alberta Falls. The trailhead for that hike is at Bear Lake, which is one sight I wanted to see in the park. (This area of the park is southwest of Estes Park. We came in on 36 and stopped at the Beaver Meadows Entrance Station. Entrance to RMNP is $20/vehicle and is good for 7 days.)



The hike was only about 2.2 miles roundtrip from the parking lot at Bear Lake, but we quickly saw that it wasn't going to be a normal hike -- there was snow all over the trail! :) The ranger had let us know that everything was still snowy but packed down, and our walk wasn't too bad once I got used to it.





The hike to the waterfall is really beautiful. There were many other people hiking this trail as well (it leads to more trails) and the parking lot had lots of cars in it.








At the falls we had a picnic and were joined by a chipmunk friend. He really wanted our food and he wasn't scared of us in the slightest. He wanted our food so badly that he came up really close and Eric had to yell at him to go away. At one point as we were eating, Eric told me, "Don't freak out but the chipmunk is really close to you." Of course the next thing I did was freak out, because in the time it took for me to turn around, the chipmunk wasn't just close to me, it was sitting on my leg. So that happened.


On the way back we followed an elk on the trail! Here is a print below. We figured maybe it was easier for the elk to stay on the trail where the snow is already packed versus posthole all over the park.


After our hike we stopped by Bear Lake for a few minutes. It was starting to drizzle so we didn't stay long, but I can only imagine how beautiful this lake is in the summer.






If you only have a few hours in RMNP, this was a really nice hike to go on, even in the middle of May. We only had the day to check it out so I can't speak to the rest of the park, but I'm definitely glad we did this particular hike since I love waterfalls so much.
Rocky Mountain National Park, CO: Alberta Falls Hike & Bear Lake Rocky Mountain National Park, CO: Alberta Falls Hike & Bear Lake Reviewed by Maria on 10:00:00 AM Rating: 5

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