Lake Isabelle

Estes Park, Colorado 80511

Lake Isabelle

Lake Isabelle Professional Review and Guide

"Lake Isabelle glimmers with Maroon Lake in White River National Forest, Dream Lake in Rocky Mountain National Park, and Mirror Lake on the West Slope of Indian Peaks as one of the prettiest lakes in Colorado. Except when it does not.

At the height of the hiking season in late July or early August, Lake Isabelle is drained to supply water to the thirsty plains. Water use is a very big deal in dry Colorado with the Ogallala Aquifer growing ever less able to supply higher amounts of water for an ever-increasing population to pump for drinking, bathing, irrigating, flushing, and fracking for fuel.

Prepared for possible disappointment in missing one of Colorado’s most spectacular vistas at Lake Isabelle during half the summer and all of the fall, hikers can be certain of abundant natural rewards along the trail below the lake. No woodland in Colorado is more beautiful than the subalpine forest extending along the Pawnee Pass Trail for most of the easy 2.1 miles to Isabelle. Spectacular wildflower displays color meadows at both ends of the trail while Long Lake glimmers through the trees."

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Trail Information

Estes Park
Nearby City
Trail Type
3 hours
USDS Forest Service, Boulder Ranger District, 2140 Yarmouth Ave., Boulder CO 80301; (303) 541-2500;
Local Contacts
Trails Illustrated Indian Peaks Gold Hill; USGS Ward
Local Maps

Activity Feed

Jul 2018