Mills Lake

Estes Park, Colorado 80511

Mills Lake

Mills Lake Professional Review and Guide

"This very popular hike leads to a rock-rimmed lake situated dramatically below Longs Peak and the extremely jagged Keyboard of the Winds."

More Mills Lake Professional Reviews and Guides

"Likely the second-most popular hiking trail in Rocky Mountain National Park leads to a rock-rimmed tarn spreading picturesquely below Longs Peak, the ragged Keyboard of the Winds, and Pagoda Mountain. Because beauty is more than a joining of visually appealing elements, the many hikers who praise Mills Lake as the most beautiful in the national park likely are correct.

This is an extreme claim, considering Dream, Chasm, Nanita, and many other extraordinary lakes within the park. But when pioneer innkeeper Abner Sprague named Mills Lake for Enos Mills, known since 1915 as the “Father of Rocky Mountain National Park,” the lake gained an aura of high regard boosting its beauty to the top spot."

Mills Lake Reviews

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7/1/2010
Beautiful hike. Very well marked and well traveled in the summer. Best to go in the early morning to avoid the crowds. Stunning views. Take a camera.
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8/11/2006
An easy hike but very crowded. The trails are well marked and maintained. The views are wonderful and the falls are nice. Its not a hikers trail, more like a lets get out of the car and stretch our legs hike.
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6/17/2005
This is a great hike to a beautiful lake with excellent peaks in the background. On this day, the trail was clear to Mills and it was not overly crowded, however, later in the summer it will become very crowded, especially late in the day. We chose to continue the trail to Black Lake. This was a mistake, too early and still a lot of snow. Should have checked with the rangers for a report. The snow makes it more difficult to hike, but the scenery is stupendous !!! If you are up to an additional 5 miles or so after you get to Mills, and there is little or no remaining snow....go on to Black Lake... Mills in and of itself is worthy of the hike!!!
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Mills Lake Photos

Trail Information

Estes Park
Nearby City
5.6
Distance
Out-and-back
Trail Type
Easy
Skill Level
4 hours
Duration
Summer
Season
Rocky Mountain National Park
Local Contacts
USGS McHenrys Peak
Local Maps

Activity Feed

Oct 2018