Near the summit of Twin Sisters Peak. Photo Credit: Spencer McKee.

Near the summit of Twin Sisters Peak. Photo Credit: Spencer McKee.

Looking for a great hike in the Rocky Mountain National Park area minus the crowds? Scaling Twin Sisters Peak Trail might be for you.

Located outside of the main Rocky Mountain National Park area, this route travels through diverse terrain, ultimately topping out above tree line on a rocky summit with panoramic views.

On a recent trip to Estes Park, I got the chance to join TINCUP Whiskey athlete ambassadors Matt Segal and Eeland Stribling on a trek to the summit of Twin Sisters Peak – here's my take on the hiking experience:

Clocking in at 7.5 miles and about 2,500 feet of vertical gain, this trail was a great workout with worthwhile views along the way.

The route is quite vertical, traveling uphill through a forest via switchbacks with little to no breaks.

A look at the start of the route. Photo Credit: Spencer McKee.

A look at the start of the route. Photo Credit: Spencer McKee.

As the trail winds up the mountainside, the terrain gets rockier and the trees get more sparse, eventually disappearing altogether.

Nearing tree line. Photo Credit: Spencer McKee.

Nearing tree line. Photo Credit: Spencer McKee.

The trail gets rockier above tree line. Photo Credit: Spencer McKee.

The trail gets rockier above tree line. Photo Credit: Spencer McKee.

In a way, it felt like a simpler and less intense version of some class one fourteener climbs I'd completed in the past.

Lunch on the summit. Photo Credit: Spencer McKee.

Lunch on the summit. Photo Credit: Spencer McKee.

The rocky summit at about 11,500 feet of elevation provides plenty of opportunity for scrambling and exploring, with wraparound views of nearby mountains filling the scene. The iconic Longs Peak can also be seen in the distance.

Overall, the trail is easy to follow, but strenuous. The barren summit also means exposure to the elements, including the potential for strong wind.

Getting blasted by strong winds on the summit of Twin Sisters Peak.

Getting blasted by strong winds on the summit of Twin Sisters Peak.

A big perk of this trail is that it's located outside of the main Rocky Mountain National Park area, making access easy while still delivering a similar hiking experience and stunning views. It's also worth noting that our group was the only one on the trail throughout our several hours of hiking. While it was a cool fall weekday, I'd venture to say that this trail might not have the same crowds as other popular hikes in the area, regardless of the day.

This map shows roughly where the trail is located in relation to other key parts of Rocky Mountain National Park.

This map shows roughly where the trail is located in relation to other key parts of Rocky Mountain National Park.

Find the route on AllTrails here.

NOTE: Dogs are not allowed on this trail.

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Director of Content and Operations

Spencer McKee is OutThere Colorado's Director of Content and Operations. In his spare time, Spencer loves to hike, rock climb, and trail run. He's on a mission to summit all 58 of Colorado's fourteeners and has already climbed more than half.

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(1) comment

zhansman

Great hiking trail. And good training for a 14er.

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