Solitude Lake in the Glacier Gorge of Rocky Mountain National Park lives up to its name. When we hiked here in August of 2020, we were the only ones at the lake. Spending about an hour hanging out between Shelf Lake and Solitude Lake, with no one else around.
Video of our Hike to Solitude Lake in the Glacier Gorge
Finding Solitude Lake requires off trail route finding and a little bit of bushwhacking. Hike past Mills Lake and Jewel Lake and stay on the Glacier Gorge trail until you pass the Glacier Creek campsite. Here you will need to be vigilant to find the turnoff for Shelf and Solitude lakes as there’s no sign.
About .3 miles past the Glacier Creek campsite, you want to look for two logs that are slightly angled and separated. From here head west on the faint trail and hop rocks to cross Glacier Creek. Cairns will lead you up to Shelf Lake but may not be the easiest path. We took a different path on the way down than on the way up that seemed much more simple.
After approximately 1,000 feet of steady elevation gain in less than a mile, you will reach Shelf Lake. We stayed to the east side of Shelf Lake navigating through dense vegetation, crossing a shallow Shelf Creek, and hiking towards Arrowhead. Less than 1/2 mile from Shelf Lake, and 200 feet of elevation gain, Solitude Lake awaits.