Favorite Rocky Mountain Hikes for Families: Beyond 4 Miles

Level of Difficulty: All the hikes on this page are longer than others we’ve recommended, so they could be a challenge for young family members or those carrying them.

Deer Mountain
location: Rocky Mountain National Park (RMNP) at Deer Ridge Junction, a few miles west of the Beaver Meadows entrance
trailhead/parking: limited parking along the road
distance: 3 miles each way
starting elevation: 8,920 ft
elevation gain: 1,093 ft
landmarks: This was our first RMNP hike with our daughter who was 6 months old at the time, so it holds a special place in my heart. We hiked at the end of May and there was some snow at the top of the trail, but not as much as other areas in the park which is why it was recommended for an early season hike. There are pleasant views throughout the hike even though it’s below the tree line. Panoramic view at the top, which would be a great place for a picnic and family photos.

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The Loch
location: RMNP
trailhead/parking: Glacier Gorge has a small parking lot and is a shuttle stop on the Bear Lake Route which is open May 27-October 9 and stops every 10-15 minutes from 7am to 7:30pm.
distance: approximately 3 miles each way
starting elevation: 9,180 ft
elevation gain: 1,000 ft
landmarks: You pass beautiful Alberta Falls .8 miles into the hike. The Loch is one of our favorite spots for a picnic. We typically see rainbow trout in the clear water.

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Mills Lake
location: RMNP
trailhead/parking: Glacier Gorge Trailhead has a small parking lot and is a shuttle stop on the Bear Lake Route which is open May 27-October 9 and stops every 10-15 minutes from 7am to 7:30pm.
distance: a little under 3 miles each way
starting elevation 9,180 ft
elevation gain: 760 ft
landmarks: Just like with The Loch hike, you will pass Alberta Falls less than a mile in. And just like The Loch, I can’t say enough about this destination. It’s one of the most scenic lakes we’ve been to. We hiked to it in early October and the colorful aspens on the trail were breathtaking!
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