The Emmaline Lake Trail #945 is a dog furiendly hike that you can enjoy with your canine kid in the Comanche Peak Wilderness area of the Rocky Mountains Arapaho and Roosevelt National Forests. It is a moderately strenuous 11.4-mile round trip out and back trail that ascends about 2040 feet.
Your adventure will begin at the Emmaline Lake/Mummy Pass trailhead at the Tom Bennett Campground right below the CSU Mountain Campus on Forest Road 145 in Rustic, Colorado. You can find restrooms and water at the campground before heading off on the trail. Make sure you bring plastic baggies to clean up after your doggo. The trail first skirts the west edge of the CSU campus on an old jeep trail for about 3.5 miles. You will come to the Mummy Pass Trail junction at 2.6 miles in, but you need to continue on the path you are on.
There is a gradual increase in altitude all the way to the fourth mile, where it starts to increase steeply until the trail’s end at Emmaline and Cirque Lakes. You will cross Fall Creek at least six times during the trip at mile markers 2.1, 3.3, 4.5, 4.8, 5.0, 5.4 and then again at Emmaline, Cirque, and Upper Cirque Lakes. Expect to start seeing some pawsitively gorgeous meadows of wildflowers when you reach the Cirque Meadows at 3.25 miles, which continues for about a mile until you reach the Wilderness and Travel Zone boundary at the forest’s edge, which is about 3.75 miles into the hike.
There are campsites along the way throughout the Emmaline Lake Trail #945, and they are clearly marked, so if you choose to stay the night, you can pick one of these campsites. If not, you and your pup will continue the uphill trek as you leave the forest and pass through the open areas of stunted forest and meadows where you will reach the lakes and the end of your hike at about 5.7 miles.
The path back is all easy downhill hiking, and you and your pupster may want to spend some extra time looking around to see things you may have missed on the way up. Watch out for moose and bears, which are plentiful in this area. This is a furific hike that you will want to come back and enjoy again and again.