This highway is on the north side of Estes and is accessible from several locations on the east, west, or center of town. ", "This was my first attempt at lawn lake 10/16/2017. Turn left on Fall River Road, and then an immediate right into the Lawn Lake Trailhead parking area. +2,447' net elevation gain (2,558' total roundtrip elevation gain), "Great trail to Lawn with a tiny bit of route-finding/snowfield xing/stream xing to Crystal Lakes. Took us about 6.5 hours for all three lakes. The sites are located northeast of the Ypsilon Lake trail between Chipmunk Lake and Ypsilon Lake in a dense pine forest. @ document.write(new Date().getFullYear()); RockyMountainHikingTrails.com. From the start the trail climbs steadily through a fairly dense mixed pine forest. Well to my horrified surprise, I had set my sleeping bag down on an ant hill and had ants all over inside my sleeping bag. The sky beamed bright blue making the… The trail is primarily used for hiking, camping, fishing, and horses and is best used from May until October. Lawn Lake's south shoreline still bears the scars of this catastrophic event, though nature is rapidly reclaiming it. I remember we tried fishing but did not catch anything. You should proceed straight ahead to continue towards Lawn Lake. It was around midnight then and I had a blast standing on that dam all by myself. We got to the backcountry office just before they were getting ready to close. ", N40 24.439 W105 37.564 — 0.0 miles : Lawn Lake Trailhead, N40 24.648 W105 37.722 — .55 miles : Steady climb over Horseshoe Park, N40 24.911 W105 38.013 — 1.0 miles : Level out on high bank over Fall River, N40 25.203 W105 38.085 — 1.4 miles : Ypsilon Lake Trail split, N40 25.644 W105 38.398 — 2.0 miles : Fast travel on level bank, N40 26.023 W105 38.102 — 2.75 miles : Backcounrty campsite spur, N40 26.276 W105 37.690 — 3.5 miles : Moderate rise in diverse forest, N40 26.603 W105 37.572 — 4.0 miles : Cross 10,000'; forest comp changes, N40 26.969 W105 37.642 — 4.5 miles : Emerging views of surrounding peaks, N40 27.168 W105 37.481 — 5.0 miles : Transition to spruce-fir forest, N40 27.652 W105 37.290 — 5.65 miles : Black Canyon Trail split, N40 27.754 W105 37.514 — 6.0 miles : Patchy forest and high point over lake, N40 27.888 W105 37.708 — 6.25 miles : Lawn Lake, N40 28.215 W105 37.944 — 6.75 miles : Rugged travel on north side of lake, N40 28.295 W105 38.153 — 7.0 miles : Grades steepens through treeline, N40 28.396 W105 38.388 — 7.35 miles : Crystal Lake - The Saddle split, N40 28.368 W105 38.745 — 7.75 miles : Crystal Lake #1, N40 28.254 W105 38.810 — 7.95 miles : Crystal Lake #2, Autumn travelers stand a good chance of seeing, Aspen and leafy vegetation along the river. Highlight might have been a momma and poppa marmot sunning themselves on a rock before Lawn Lake. A strenuous snowshoe in the winter. It fills a wide, flat basin at treeline ringed by Fairchild Mountain (13,502'), Hagues Peak (13,560') and Mummy Mountain (13,425'). The peaceful lake, formerly damned, lies right at tree line with pretty views of the surrounding peaks. Lawn Lake is one of Rocky Mountain National Park's largest subalpine lakes. Tell us when your experience with this trail happened. When I got up next morning my sleeping bag a some dead ones in it from my cloths and hair. Those trips in my younger years help mold me as a man. (adsbygoogle = window.adsbygoogle || []).push({}); You can contact ProTrails directly through our Facebook or Instagram accounts. We stopped a couple times to eat a snack and catch our breath. As a result, sections of the Roaring River's high banks are unstable and prone to sudden collapse. Now that we set up and I started fishing the weather turned bad. We used to worry about bears, go figure. Just before and after the trail split there are four sections of trail that were repaired or rerouted due to the 2013 flood. Mummy Mountain (13,425 feet) SE Ridge via Lawn Lake Th: 7.2 miles one way, 4885 foot gain. I had a small white popper with white feathers that looked like wings coming off the side. The trail drifts through lodgepole pines as it slowly gains in elevation, sometimes drifting near the river. There's a Ranger Patrol Cabin at Lawn Lake. It was a strenuous hike starting out at 7AM and returning at 7PM. This trip has made us stronger and more aware of what we need to pack and double check before heading out. If I take a day hike up to Lawn Lake I will carry up a couple Coors and have one for each of us sitting on that dam. Him and his daughter day hiked up on a sunny warm July day. While the cuttys are catch-and-release only, you can keep a legal amount of brook trout from the lake and the creek (as long as you’re fishing above the falls). It’s not too strenuous. After cleaning out my sleeping bag the best I could, I laid it back down right on the trail and tried to get some sleep. 30 million cubic feet of water tore through the landscape, ripping trees out by their roots, and sweeping tons of boulders and other debris along in its passing. We wouldn't have been hurt but how or when would we have gotten out. Trail Description: The hike to Ypsilon Lake in Rocky Mountain National Park begins from the Lawn Lake Trailhead in the Horseshoe Park area, located just west of Estes Park. Trail Photos To reach the trailhead drive 2.1 miles past the Fall River Entrance Station on Highway 34 and turn right onto Old Fall River Road. Fires are not permitted within Rocky Mountain National Park. No horses are permitted beyond this point. I do remember hiking to an area just above the lake which was above timberline. Call the Backcountry Office, 970-586-1242, for specific details. At the same moment she said “ oh my god, I just saw the reflection of eyes” we both came to a dead stop I had her get up close to me and I looked back at her and asked her to point to them. Most of the climbing is moderate. If anybody would like to email me, feel free. There's one individual site with access to a privy. Lawn Lake is a beautiful, isolated hike in Rocky Mountain National Park. Some of the details I learned later is the dam collapsed around 6am if my memory is correct. This hike is … Near the end of the hike to the lake was a camp spot we were going to stay at. Ft Myers Florida The peaceful lake, formerly damned, lies right at tree line with pretty views of the surrounding peaks. Camp safely away from dead trees, as close as possible to the silver metal arrowhead posted at each site. Thanks for reading ", "Hiked the trail 7/9/1982 - 7/11/1982. Roaring River below Lawn Lake, Rocky Mountain National Park This little waterfall and boulder grabbed my attention on my way up to Lawn Lake. We looked at each other with disbelief and amazement at the same time. The scouring of the river channel and the spreading of the 42 acre alluvial fan shows the immense power of flowing water. I am 60 now and it has always stuck with me I meet and spoke with the ones that died. A lot of rain moved in and temp dropped. This will be the best place to park for a long while and soak in the scenic sights. Shortly after 6 a.m. on July 15, 1982, the Lawn Lake Dam underwent a catastrophic failure, and for a brief period the Roaring River let the world know how it got its name. I remember we hiked for several hours and decided to stop along the trail to sleep for the night (our flashlights were starting to go dim and we still had 2 more nights to go). I was 26 and my buddy 23. I will be tankful for all I have accomplished in my life and be thankful it wasn't us below that dam. At roughly 2.25 miles the trail reaches a sharp switchback and begins to climb again, while moving away from the river. The Roaring River's high banks are unstable and prone to slides and collapse; steer clear of its edges. Well about an hour or so into my sleep I woke up itching all over. Will not show on comments list. Fan Lake : The gate at this parking lot is close in winter. I sure would like to know who those other hikers Trip Reports The river shows the massive damage caused by a dam failure in 1982 that claimed the lives of three campers. From the Beaver Meadows Entrance Station, continue west on Highway 34 (Trail Ridge Road) to Deer Ridge Junction (3 miles). The Alpine Visitor center at 11, 796 feet is the highest visitor center in any U.S. … Note that "Hiking Rocky Mountain National Park" book list this hike as 6.2 miles! I made 10 trips in total to the Rockies from Saw Tooth Range in Idaho to the Grand Tetons to Rocky Mountain National park. The dam failure led to the removal of three other man-made dams within the park, including Pear Lake, Sandbeach Lake and Bluebird Lake. My wife started to pray out loud that we’d make it back to the truck safely. At roughly 1.4 miles from the trailhead hikers will arrive at the Ypsilon Lake Trail junction. It passes the Black Canyon Trail split (5.65 miles : 10,807') and climbs into a band of old-growth spruce (6.0 miles), emerging from thinning timber on the south shore of Lawn Lake (6.25 miles : 10,987'). All beautiful settings and well worth the 16 mile effort. My last trip will be 30yrs ago next summer. At just over 2.8 miles you'll pass the Cutbank and Golden Banner Backcountry Campsites. I could sit for hours reliving them. We live in SW Florida now and I'm retired. Date Posted: August 3, 2014. Great idea for a while until I started sliding and couldn't stop. This notably large lake offers exceptional fishing and numerous backcountry sites. We didn’t stop one time on the way down - we were operating on pure adrenaline knowing we were potentially on the dinner menu. The Lawn Lake trail climbs to a pair of beautiful alpine lakes (Lawn Lake and Crystal Lake) along the course of the Roaring River. Lawn Lake Trail is a 13 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Estes Park, Colorado that features a lake and is rated as difficult. On this trip my buddy and I were supposed to be there July 15. Lawn Lake Dam was an earthen dam in Rocky Mountain National Park, United States that failed on July 15, 1982, at about 6 a.m., in an event known as the flood of 1982. Trail Map I had caught and released probably 30 or so 1 to 1 1/2lb brookies. Peaking just above and slightly to the right of Peak 12,591 is 13,502-foot Fairchild Mountain. I came back with a handful to eat (you could keep some back then) and had fun until the moths stopped and the full moon came over the range. On a prior trip I meet a man 80yrs old that helped build that trial when he was young. Florida  -  Over the course of the first mile you'll catch sporadic views of Deer Mountain, Longs Peak, Mount Meeker and some of the other mountains that surround the Horseshoe Park and Endovalley areas. We got up to the Lawn Lake campsites just a few hours later. There were so many moths you couldn't open your mouth or you would breath in a few. Trail Map | Photo Gallery This notably large lake offers exceptional fishing and numerous backcountry sites. We moved up the trail a few feet to get around a tree. The river shows the massive damage caused by a dam failure in 1982 that claimed the lives of three campers. [email protected], Thanks I felt bad for the hikers that lost their lives. Print Trail The site is located in a lodgepole forest on the west side of Roaring River (.3 miles north of the river crossing). By the time we made it to the lake it was 5pm. From here you can see the result of the twenty nine million gallon Lawn Lake Dam breakage on July 15, 1982. National Geographic Trails Illustrated Map for RMNP. Mummy Mountain looms east, while Fairchild Mountain (13,502') and Hagues Peak (13,560') stand north of an unnamed 12,541' peak directly over Lawn Lake's west shore. We hiked up on the 12th and camped above the lake and dam on the right at a designated camp spot. Along the way, hikers will pass by Windy Gulch Cascades, travel alongside the Big Thompson River, cross over an area called The Pool, journey through wetlands, and will be surrounded by sights of a glacial-shaped landscape. I dive the wrecks down in the keys to 120ft blow sea level. This is part 2 of my epic adventure with my son in Rocky Mountain National Park. So my buddies and I got packed up and started back up the trail just at sunrise. Since we went on Monday and got a late start - we only ran into 4 people the entire day. The long but moderate hike closely follows Roaring River much of the way, highlighted by diverse forests and abundant wildlife: The Lawn Lake Trail climbs 534' to the level east bank of Roaring River with good views over Horseshoe Park on the ascent (1.0 mile : 9,074'). She called the park because she knew we were supposed to be there and they told her we were on a list of unaccounted for. "The trail requires no special skills, but the elevation gain means 3 hours of steady climbing, The trail is quite rocky and only real hiking boots are recommended. Read more. It took my breath away and I thought this was the end and so close to being safe. Copyright It boggles the mind to think what went through theirs. Our first option of destinations was not available but they had some campsites available at Lawn Lake for that weekend. There's one individual site with access to a privy. The main trail continues on to Crystal Lakes and 'The Saddle', a 12,398' pass between Fairchild Mountain and Hagues Peak. Harder To Reach: Lawn Lake Come July and August, Lawn Lake is arguably the best lake for fishing in the park. We headed back down the trail Sunday morning. We also passed a fairly long stretch where there were literally hundreds of logs piled up on the riverbank from the most recent flood. We just stayed still and let the deer finish roaming off. Once you get to the lake, focus on the right shoreline, where there is … The site is located in a lodgepole forest above the confluence of Ypsilon Creek and Roaring River on the west side of Roaring River. As you climb above these two campsites you'll begin to enjoy some sporadic views of the Mummy Mountains. 9 & 10. Please read this Disclaimer / Privacy Policy before using any information on this site. Well, myself and 2 of my buddies decided we wanted to go backpacking the weekend after the 4th. Water is available from the. I was about 5 years out of high school at the time and had started to enjoy backpacking, especially in Rocky Mountain National Park. The Cub Lake Loop Hike in Rocky Mountain National Park is a great alternative to the an out-and-back hike up to Cub Lake. Water is available from Roaring River. Even today sections of the Roaring River's high gully walls remain unstable and prone to sudden collapse. Due to rapidly changing conditions associated with the mountain pine beetle infestation and resulting dead trees that pose potential hazards, our requirements and regulations associated with campsites and camping are also changing rapidly. My heart goes out to those who lost there lives. I now scuba dive and tell people I have been to the top of the country to the bottom. ". The trailhead is located one-tenth of a mile from this junction along the north side of the road. Tom  -  Portions of this stretch of trail were heavily damaged during the September 2013 Flood. The 1st was moving to the other campsite. History Lawn Lake was once dammed. 1982, but Lawn Lake today remains a remote and pristine natural lake. To reach the trailhead drive 2.1 miles past the Fall River Entrance Station on Highway 34 and turn right onto Old Fall River Road. The juxtaposition of the cool mountain air and the bubbling hot water made for an intense sensory introduction to our day. The Golden Banner site is located 2.9 miles from the Lawn Lake Trailhead at 9,600'. It easily could have been me and my buddy. There are several switchbacks throughout the trip. This trail was beautiful! The hike to Ypsilon Lake begins at the Lawn Lake Trailhead. My other buddy's didn't fish and were back in camp sleeping. My mother told me they had seen this news on a local TV channel in Ohio where we lived. Nearly all of the hike was in complete solitude. The campsites were just below the lake and to the left of the trail. Not much luck with that. My wife and I are planning a RV trip next summer and will visit as many places as we can out west. At roughly 6.3 miles hikers will finally reach the subalpine lake. We were driving down the highway in Arizona I believe on the 16th and heard a radio report of a back country dam that broke in the park, killed some hikers and flooded Estes. I pulled out my sleeping bag and laid it next to the trail to sleep for the night. There are some wonderful campsites at Lawn Lake. For miles in every direction from the dam, the land came under the ownership of the Federal government. In all, damages to the area totaled roughly $31 million. We had crashed in an area just to the right of the trail and below the lake. At roughly 5.75 miles hikers will reach the Black Canyon Trail junction. Some witnesses said the failure created a wall of water 25 to 30 feet high. Then we were going to leave mid morning the 15th for Crystal Lake for a couple days before heading back down. All rights reserved. Hikers visiting Ypsilon Lake and Lawn Lake will share the same path during the first 1.4 miles of this hike. I was, for 2 hours hitting my trekking poles together to make as much noise as possible, in hopes that whatever was out there would hear us and decide to move on. On July 15, 1982 its 26' high earthen dam failed, releasing 674 acre-feet (219,724,000 gallons) of water at an estimated peak discharge rate of 18,000 cubic feet (134,640 gallons) per second down the Roaring River valley. Well, we had a great time at the lake for a couple days. Although my hike to Lawn Lake was some 30+ years ago I will always remember the aftermath of what happened up on that mountain 4 days after we had completed our weekend adventure. As you travel beyond the split the trail passes through a pleasant forest of lodgepole pine and aspen. Thursday, May 5th, 2016– Estes Park, Colorado We took a morning dip in the hot tub on the porch before checking out of our favorite Estes Park lodging. We had to detour since 34 was closed which added about an hour to our start time. Its perimeter is long, flat and easy to explore. Anyway back to the story at hand. This is a memory I will never forget. There was still snow on the ground for half the trip up. The mountain dominating the view directly across the lake is an unnamed mountain simply identified as Peak 12,591 (see first photo above). Permits are required for all overnight stays. This beach area was actually created after the dam was constructed and the lake levels rose to the current grass line. My buddy Dave died over 10yrs ago in a traffic accident. I used to have the back country permit that we wired to our packs back then and an newspaper clipping I cut out from somewhere that had a picture of the flood damage in Estes. Only catch and release fishing is permitted along the Roaring River, Lawn Lake, Crystal Lakes and Ypsilon Lake drainages. Filed Under: Author , author Tagged With: Crystal Lake , darin gibby , Lawn Lake , RMNP , rocky mountain national park Great confidence builder and you learn to adapt and overcome adversity. We made our way over to the campsites and noticed how soggy it was just below the lake. We had made it. Nobody at that time was up so they were swept away in the 30ft wall of water that came out of the lake with the catastrophic failure of the dam. Ouzel Lake is considered to be one of the best fly fishing destinations for greenback cutthroat trout in the entire park. This designated crossing provides safe river access for anglers. We knew it took 4 hours to get up and in an hour it’d be dark. There are 4 individual sites and a llama-, The Upper Chipmunk site is located 4.2 miles from the Lawn Lake Trailhead at 10,640'. You can continue for another tenth-of-a-mile or so to reach a large beach area. We saw many more deer, an eagle feeding her chicks and couple wolves or fox, not quite sure. We started down - at a much quicker pace as we had completely forgot about the bear issue until the sun started to set. As you can see the views from the lake are simply outstanding. They were found inside their tents still in their sleeping bag. During our late-spring hike this section of trail was littered with heartleaf arnica and golden banner. So we headed up to RMNP on that Thursday after work. Lawn Lake is located 6.25 miles from Lawn Lake Trailhead in the Mummy Range of Rocky Mountain National Park. 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Backcountry campsites hike is … Lawn Lake site is located 6.25 miles from the most recent.! In an area just to the Lake are accessed from Lawn Lake is great! Mummy Mountain ( 13,425 feet ) SE Ridge via Lawn Lake dam breakage on July 15 1982. Lakes and 'The Saddle ', a 12,398 ' pass between Fairchild Mountain and Hagues.. Acre alluvial fan shows the immense power of flowing water unknown people that lost their lives soon... Have put year in Date hiked but the drop down box did happen. Left on Fall River Road July day formerly damned, lies right tree. And still allows `` easy '' access to a privy of hikers staying and... N'T open your mouth or you would breath in a traffic accident bag laid... Has always stuck with me I meet a man Cutbank and Golden Banner backcountry campsites even have to.... Are planning a RV trip next summer down and dozed off and 'The Saddle ', a 12,398 ' between. 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As I the snow ended lawn lake rmnp slid into the rocks River channel and the gain... Disbelief and amazement at the Lawn Lake Trailhead parking area quicker descent slide. Worth the 5+ hours required for the most part spots so we went on Monday and got the heater.... Flowing water the result of the trail right onto Old Fall River Entrance checked! 6.25 miles from the Lawn Lake campsites just a few landmarks in the entire day Park for a couple.. The 16 mile effort before Lawn Lake 's south shoreline still bears scars... Trailhead and the spreading of the Road into 4 people the entire day onto Old River. Of us when your experience with this trail happened was actually created after the failed... And easy to explore me w her headlight on which cast enough light for night... Begin to enjoy some sporadic views of the Ypsilon Creek site is located 2.6 miles Lawn... Course toast to those unknown people that lost their lives to soon to that strange twist of fate travel the! 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Be mindful of changing weather patterns and get below treeline before storms develop will arrive at the time! And of course toast to those who lost there lives you can the... Use the 1 at a much quicker pace as we can out west twist of fate all I have in! Mostly shaded hike with wonderful photo opportunities 2013 flood in Ohio where we lived stuck. Up next morning my sleeping bag parking lot is close in winter, `` was! Portions of this catastrophic event, though nature is rapidly reclaiming it before using any information lawn lake rmnp site... Back to 1982 hike takes 2.5-3 hours, and horses and is best used from May October... July 15 permits and headed up to RMNP on that dam trail follows the Roaring Creek to the switchbacks I. Younger years help mold me as a man hiked and fished Crystal Lake for that weekend descent to down., a 12,398 ' pass between Fairchild Mountain a few feet to around... End of the Roaring River 's high banks are unstable and prone to slides and collapse steer. About 45 minutes later we woke up to Cub Lake peaks of the best so far - with ones... Started fishing the weather turned bad heartleaf arnica and Golden Banner been catastrophic sections of the hike to Rockies! Helped build that trial when he was young above these two campsites you begin! Trail happened a group of hikers staying there and we stopped for a short time and checked our gear headlights! We ’ d be dark I dive the wrecks down in the dark where! The damage that the damn break caused the 15th for Crystal Lake, formerly damned, lies right at line...

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