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Trip Details

Date Saturday  12/22/2018
End Date
Group Shining Mountains
Event Title Lake Helene (RMNP)
Start Time 8:30 AM
Status Complete
Leader Pete Langer
Member Price Free
Non-member Price Free
Available Participants No tickets left
Waitlist Participants 3
Type Trip
Trip Type Snowshoe
Pace Casual
Classification Easy B
Trail Mileage 6.4
Elevation Gain 1,600
Driving Distance


Our snowshoe hike today will be an out-and-back route to Lake Helene at the base of Notchtop Mountain in the Rocky Mountain National Park.  Snowshoes are required.  We will meet at 8:30 AM in the first level of the Estes Park Visitor Center and carpool from there to the Bear Lake Trailhead.  This is the new 3-story parking garage on Hwy 36/Hwy 7 that you reach as you come into town from the east.  It is after the Hwys 36/7 stoplight and before the main Hwys 34/36 stoplight.  There are bathrooms at the Visitor Center across the footbridge about 100 yards from the parking garage.  There are also toilets at the trailhead.  A Park Pass will be required for each car we take into the Park so, if you have one, please bring it.

For more info Contact


Contact your trip leader, Pete Langer, at or voice/text at 970-227-3614.


From our starting point at the Bear Lake TH (9,450') we will take the standard summer trail towards Odessa Lake but will leave that trail after about 2 miles and take off cross-country for the final mile plus to Lake Helene (10,580').  We will cross Two Rivers Lake (10,620') along the way. 

Snoeshoes may or may not be needed for the first mile but MicroSpikes or similar shoe traction devices are recommendedHowever, snowshoes will be required once we leave the standard trail.  Wind permitting, we will take a lunch break at an awesome viewpoint on the rocks to the north of Lake Helene.  The scenery along this route - even in the trees - is excellent and gets even better once Notchtop Mountain comes into view.

Overall, this will be about a 6.4 mile effort with a trailhead to trailhead time of no more than 5 hours.  Our pace will be comfortable.  This hike is suitable for those relatively new to snowshoeing who want to experience what it is like to move cross-country in deep, untracked snow.  We will initially be on a packed-snow trail but once we leave that the snow will be shin-deep with the occasional hidden obstacle underneath.  We will cross two frozen lakes and cross two short sections of steep sidehill.  Please be sure that you know how to securely fasten your snowshoes to both your feet and your backpack!




Snowshoes will be required.  MicroSpikes or similar shoe traction devices should also be carried.  Gaiters, trekking poles, snow pants, a balaclava, and goggles will be extremely helpful.  This hike has been previewed.  I will keep the group posted on expected trail conditions and forecasted weather as we get closer to the hike date.


Sorry it is past the registration deadline for this event.