The Spirit of the Rockies
Hike Profiles for Rocky Mountain National Park and Surrounding Areas
Chasm Lake
The hike to Chasm Lake is a
popular hike to one of the
area's highest and most
dramatic lakes. Nestled at the
foot of Longs Peak's famous
east face, Chasm Lake is a
favorite destination for many
hikers. The final 0.1 mile
approach to the lake involves
some basic route finding as the
trail climbs a steep rocky area.
Distance: 4.2 miles one-way

Lake elevation: 11,760 feet

Trailhead elevation: 9,400 feet

Net elevation gain: 2,360 feet

Longs Peak Trailhead

Rocky Mountain National Park
Chasm Lake and Longs Peak
Major Trail Landmarks
Junction of Chasm Lake and Longs Peak Trails (3.5 miles one-way from trailhead)
Principal Destinations Near Chasm Lake
Mount Lady Washington (4.5 miles one-way from trailhead) - via Longs Peak Trail to an unmaintained route
Mount Meeker (5.5 miles one-way from trailhead) - via Chasm Lake Trail to an unmaintained route
Longs Peak (7.5 miles one-way from trailhead) - via Longs Peak Trail
Backcountry Campsites Near Chasm Lake
Goblin's Forest (1.2 miles one-way from trailhead) - 6 individual sites
Battle Mountain (2.8 miles one-way from trailhead) - 1 group site
The Longs Peak Trailhead is on the east side of the Continental Divide between Estes Park and the village of
Meeker Park. Longs Peak Road provides access to the trailhead from Colorado Highway 7. Turn west on
to Longs Peak Road from Highway 7 at a junction approximately 9 miles south of Estes Park, or 2 miles
north of Meeker Park. Look for a left (south) turn to the trailhead parking area, about 1 mile from
Highway 7, where Longs Peak Road continues straight (west) to the Longs Peak Campground.

About 3.5 miles from the Longs Peak Trailhead, the Chasm Lake Trail splits from the Longs Peak
Trail and heads south. This 0.7 mile trail to the lake heads downhill to a creek crossing just above
Columbine Falls. Just beyond a Park Service patrol cabin, the trail disappears in the rock slabs, but
routes to the lake are marked with cairns. Most of this trail is above timberline, so special attention
must be given to weather conditions. Large snowfields near the lake may persist into summer months,
and should be crossed with extra caution.
Sample photographs of the hike to Chasm Lake
Columbine Falls
East Face of Longs Peak from the trail
Roaring Fork creek near Chasm Lake
Chasm Lake Trail
Chasm Lake topographic map
Principal summer trail marked by solid red line; unmaintained trail or route marked by dashed red line.
Map is oriented with north to the top of the map
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All photographs are property of Mike Amfahr and are protected by copyright laws.
Topographic map is property of and copyrighted by Maps a la carte, Inc., and is used on this site with permission.