Last updated: August 11, 2022
General Overview of Current Trail Situation in Rocky Mountain National Park
All trails in Rocky Mountain National Park are free of snow. There are still a few trails closed due to fire damage from the October 2020 fires. These trails are listed below.
Specific trail reports
These trail reports are provided early in the season(April-July) and late in the season (October-November) to report snow fields, ice, fallen trees, or trail damage. From mid-July through early October there are usually very few reports since most trails are open and in good condition.
July 27th 2022
- There is still a very small snowfield to cross just before you reach Bluebird Lake. This rarely melts out completely, although this year it could. This snowfield is easily crossed on warmer days.
July 20th 2022
- The NPS has once again closed the Tonahutu Trail between Flattop Mountain and the Onahu Trail.
- There are still many fallen trees between Lake Helene and Odessa Lake.
- Nearly all the snow has melted from the Flattop trail.
- The Green Mountain Trail and the Tonahutu Trail from Big Meadows to Flattop Mountain have just reopened to hikers. (This has changed, see July 20 note.) The Green Mountain Trail is still closed to stock. These trails were closed for nearly two years due to damage from the East Troublesome Fire in October 2020. Read more here. Please note that a section of the lower Tonahutu Trail is still closed. This is the section of trail from the junction of the Green Mountain Trail and Tonahutu Trail to the spur trail leading to the Kawuneeche Visitor Center (KVC). If you are hiking to Grand Lake, it is best to follow the Green Mountain Trail down to Trail Ridge Road and then follow the road into town or at least to the KVC and then back to the main trail. Here's a link to a map.
- The Ute Trail from Beaver Meadows up into the tundra has also reopened.
- The switchbacks above Milner Pass have melted out and the trail is now fully open.
- The Odessa Loop from Bear Lake to Fern Lake is still a little challenging. There is a very large area of snow often called "The Drift" half way to Lake Helene. Some hikers say that they have trouble finding the trail on the other side. There is still a very steep and dangerous snowfield just after Lake Helene as the trail begins to descend towards Odessa Lake. After this, there are many fallen trees before you reach Fern Lake.
- The trail up Flattop Mountain is passable. There are a number of snow drifts that you need to cross near tree line. These are easily crosssed.Then half a mile before the summit there is a large snowfield you need to cross. Early in the morning that snowfield can be icy and later in the day it can be very sloppy and wet.
- Although the Tonahutu Trail is currently closed to hikers, it is open to backpackers who have a camping permit. If you have a permit and are hiking this trail, you will find the trail to be very wet through the Big Horn Flats and as you descend towards tree line. At some points the trail is a rushing stream.
- The Longs Peak trail is snow free until you reach tree line. There are still a few patches of snow that are easily crossed at tree line. After those snowfields, the trail up to Chasm Junction is clear of snow. Between Chasm Junction and Chasm Meadow still has a very large and dangerous snowfield. Hiking across this snowfield to get to Chasm Lake is not recommended unless you have microspikes, poles, and a very good sense of balance. A slip here could be fatal. Also, please note that Longs Peak is still technical as there is still a lot of snow along the Keyhole Route.
- The trail from Milner Pass (Poudre Lake) still has a lot of snow. It might be another week to 10 days before the trail can be hiked without difficulty as the slope above the lake is heavily forested and north-facing.
June 18th 2022
- The trail up to Mills Lake in Glacier Gorge is almost free of snow. It is still a bit muddy. Continuing up to Black Lake the trail gets much more wet and muddy with increasing snow as you get near the lake.
The following trails are still closed as a result of the fires of 2020:
- Lower Tonahutu Trail (between Green Mtn. Junction and KVC junction. See map.
- Mirror Lake Trail (Mummy Range)
- Comanche Peak Trail (Mummy Range)
- Spruce Lake Trail (Near Fern Lake)
- Most of the Sun Valley Trail (Kawuneeche Valley)
Here are a few important things to keep in mind as you head out onto the trails.
Before you depart, spend a little while on our safety page to ensure that you are ready for this summer season. Also check out our know before you go section, with helpful articles and links to resources for those who are planning to hike in Rocky Mountain National Park.
From late June through mid-August, we typically have intense afternoon storms. As the day progresses, the high temperatures down on the plains rises and meets the much cooler mountain air which creates large thunderstorms with intense lightning and sometimes hail. You do not want to be caught above tree line, in an open meadow, or near a lake during these storms. The general rule during this period is to hike as early as you can and to be back below tree line before noon. Occasionally storms can occur even earlier so keep an eye on the weather and if it starts to look threatening, turn around. These storms can be life-threatening.
Also, let's do our best to hike in the middle of the trail and not out on its edges to keep them from growing wider with every passing year.