Twin Sisters Peaks is a fun winter hike that’s located in the Colorado Front Range. This hike is located just minutes from Estes Park, and a little under 2 hours from Denver, with an extremely accessible trail head right off of CO-7.
East Twin Sisters Peak (11,428′) and West Twin Sisters Peak (11,413′) offers stunning views of the towering Long’s Peak, Mt Meeker, Mt Lady Washington, Rocky Mountain National Park and the Mummy Range.
Getting to Twin Sisters Peaks Trailhead
The trailhead to Twin Sisters Peaks is located directly across the street from Twin Lily Lakes Trailhead, Estes Park, Co, 80517
GPS coordinates 40.305462, -105.538301
There are bathrooms located at the Lily Lake Trailhead and they were open on January 6th 2020, and I’m guessing that they are open year round.
During winter conditions the road to drive up to the Twin Sisters Trailhead is closed but it only adds about 1 mile round trip to your hike to park in the lower lot or over at Lily Lake Trailhead.
We arrived at the Lily Lake Trailhead around 4:45am and did spot a moose hanging around the lake at that time. Started hiking up from the trailhead at 5am with hopes of getting some good sunrise views of Longs Peak, and the distant Mummy Mountain Range.
The Twin Sisters trail was snow packed in most spots and very easy to follow in the dark with the aid of a head lamp. Snow shoes were not needed at any point on the trail.
Here is a short 7 minute video I made with the GoPro 7 of our Twin Sisters Peaks winter hike
According to my GPS we hiked 7.4 miles to hit both summits. Total time from the trailhead, to the summits, back to the trailhead was 4.5 hours, about 45 minutes of that was enjoying views at the summit and shooting photos.
- Distance: 7.4 miles out and back
- Elevation gain: 2,533ft
- AVG Pace 30:10
- Moving Time 3:43:14
- Total Time 4:35:09
- Calories: about 2,000 or so….
Difficulty of Hiking the Twin Sisters Peaks trail
Alltrails.com rates this as hard. Rockymountainhikingtrails.com rates it as 11.95 (strenuous). Protrails.com rates this at Moderate-Strenuous.
Personally I rate this trail somewhere between moderate and hard. There’s not really a long period of tough elevation gain and the scramble up to the Twin Sisters east summit is pretty short and easy.
Reasons to hike Twin Sisters Peak
- Excellent winter hike, unless a huge snowstorm just came through, this is not a snow-shoe trail, micro-spikes are very helpful though
- This gets you above the treeline, a good starter hike for those looking to tackle some 13ers and 14ers
- Some of the best photographic opportunities of shooting panoramic shots of Longs Peak and neighboring mountains
- It’s free. No RMNP entrance fee is needed.
- Just about 2 hours from Denver, depending on traffic.
Keep in mind that the Twin Sisters Peaks are above treeline. Which means weather elements such as lack of shade, high winds, need to be taken into consideration.
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