The Lily Lake parking lot is located 0.5 miles south of the Lily Mountain trailhead on CO-7 and is just 10 minutes from Estes Lake. Even though Lily Lake is a part of Rocky Mountain National Park, it is free to visit. Primary activities include fishing, nordic walking, and hiking. Dogs, vehicles, horses, and mountain bikes are not allowed on the trails. However, jogging strollers are allowed. The trailhead does have water, restrooms, and a billboard map. Cell phone service is weak at the trailhead. What is more, Colorado licensed fishermen can do catch and releasing fishing for Greenback Cutthroat Trout because the Lily Lake shoreline is almost a 100% casting accessible from all sides.
Lily Lake trail is one of Rocky Mountain National Park’s four accessible trails that are designed to be used by people of all ages and skill levels because the four accessible trails are wide, flat, and located really close to a parking lot. Bear Lake is the other accessible trail I have hiked and documented.
The Lily Lake trail is 1.4 miles long and does not have any change in elevation so you remain at around 9,000 feet. The only drawback of the Lily Lake trail is that it can be tough to enjoy on really windy days because it lies in an exposed valley.
Finally, the Lily Lake trail is a great place to have a picnic because it has several picnic tables and a stunning view of Longs Peak and Mount Meeker (seen in the following picture).
Lily Ridge trail is a 1.1 mile link off of the Lily Lake trail and has a mild change in elevation of less than 200 feet, from 9,000 feet to 9,125 feet. Both trails are great for kids because they are short and fun. The following are pictures taken from Lily Ridge trail.
On really windy days, the Lily Ridge trail can still be fun because the forest canopy provides some protection from the wind.
In sum, Lily Lake trails are an ideal place for family hiking and a picnic with an added bonus of easy lake access for fishermen.