Alberta Falls, Colorado

Alberta Falls in August 2009

Alberta Falls is one of the best waterfalls to visit in Rocky Mountain National Park. It is one of the easier waterfalls to visit in the park, and it is one of the more visually appealing. The hike to the falls is very beautiful as you walk through forests of pines and aspens. You’ll see some amazing mountain scenery along the way. The trip is only about 1 mile one-way, which is shorter than many of the other waterfall hikes in the park.

Getting to the trailhead may be the most complicated part. The parking area directly adjacent to the trailhead is often full very early in the morning. Therefore, the best place to park is earlier along on Bear Lake Rd. There will be signs indicating whether the trailheads further up are full. From there, you can easily jump on the buses that lead to the trailhead. The bus ride there is a little crazy, as some of the sharp curves don’t seem made for buses, but it’s still fun to enjoy the scenery without being the one driving.

Directions:

  1. From Estes Park, head west along US-36 into the park. You’ll have to pay the $20/week entrance fee.
  2. Shortly after entering the park, you’ll turn left onto Bear Lake Rd.
  3. Head down Bear Lake Rd. for a ways. Pay attention to signs indicating whether parking is available. You may have to park in one of the bus lots.
  4. Whether you take the bus or drive further, you want to stop/park at the Glacier Gorge Trailhead.
  5. From the Glacier Gorge Trailhead, there are very clear signs indicating the directions to Alberta Falls.

Accessibility: 7/10 (easy/moderate)
Height: 30′
Length of Hike: 1.6 miles round-trip

Where in the World is Alberta Falls?

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