Lone Pine Lake, East Inlet Trailhead, Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado
Lone Pine Lake - 11.0 miles
East Inlet Trailhead
|Round-Trip Length:||11.0 miles|
|Start-End Elevation:||8,391' - 9,885'|
|Elevation Change:||+1,494' net elevation gain|
Lone Pine Lake is located 5.5 miles from the East Inlet Trailhead on the west side of Rocky Mountain National Park. This moderately long but mild trail is highlighted by abundant wildlife, large meadows, and excellent fishing.
The East Inlet Trail continues on to Lake Verna, Spirit Lake, Fourth Lake, Fifth Lake, and Boulder Grand Pass, which crosses the Continental Divide:
The trail begins smooth and flat in a mixed pine - aspen forest to Adams Falls (.3 miles), then skirts the north edge of a vast, marshy meadow. Moose are common along willow-lined oxbows in the meadow.
The trail rises nominally to the Lower East Inlet backcountry campsite (2.3 miles), then steepens up the north valley wall with good views down the meadow through which you just passed. Aspen, tall columns of lodgepole, and audible streams highlight this pleasant stretch.
Grades moderate in a stream-crossed flat near the Cat's Lair backcountry campsite (4.0 miles), and closely follow a voluminous stretch of East Inlet for 1.5 miles to Lone Pine Lake (5.5 miles : 9,985').
The main trail swings up the southeast side of Lone Pine Lake with good vantages and morning light. Social trails on Lone Pine's west shore offer good views up valley of Andrews Peak (12,565'), Mt Alice (13,310'), Boulder Grand Pass (12,061'), Isolation Peak (13,118'), and Mt Craig (12,007').
Key GPS Coordinates - DATUM WGS84View Interactive Google Map
- N40 13.869 W105 43.951) — Lone Pine Lake
- The East Inlet Valley is especially rich in wildlife. Look for moose browsing in marshy meadows in the early morning and, as temperatures rise, in dark timber later in the afternoon.
- Lake Verna is 1.4 miles from Lone Pine Lake, and Spirit Lake is 1.1 miles further on an unimproved trail from the west edge of Lake Verna. The trail may be difficult to follow, especially with lingering snow.
- The trail will likely be wet in places throughout the summer and into early fall.
- The East Inlet Trail hosts 8 backcountry campsites that fill up quickly throughout the summer. Advance reservations are necessary.
- Contact the ranger station for fishing rules and regulations. A Colorado fishing license is required. Rules are strictly enforced.
Directions to Trailhead
The East Inlet Trailhead is on the west side of Rocky Mountain National Park within the town of Grand Lake. Follow Highway 34 (Trail Ridge Road) to the turnoff for Grand Lake on Highway 278. Turn east toward Grand Lake, then bypass the main road through Grand Lake, following West Portal Road and signs toward the boat launch area. The trailhead is located about 2.7 miles from U.S. 34 along the eastern shore of Grand Lake, opposite the boat launch.
Rocky Mountain National Park