Shadow Mountain Lake Colorado Fishing, Camping, Boating

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Shadow Mountain Lake

Come fish, boat, and play on Shadow Mountain Lake, one of the Great Lakes of Colorado. It’s connected to Grand Lake, surrounded by forest, and framed by the Rocky Mountains.

  • With 1,346 surface acres of water, Shadow Mountain Lake offers space for fun water activities 
  • Shadow Mountain Lake connects to Grand Lake by a canal, so you can explore both waters 
  • Camp, hike, and picnic near the water’s edge 
  • Enjoy views of the Continental Divide

What can I see and do at Shadow Mountain Lake? 

  • Fishing/Ice Fishing: Anglers will find Kokanee Salmon and Rainbow, Brown, Mackinaw, and Cutthroat trout in these waters. The area below the dam has the some of the best fly-fishing in the Arapaho National Forest.
  • Boating/Waterskiing: Load your boat in the water at Green Ridge ramp on the water’s south side. The water has a maximum depth of 24 feet. All boats are allowed, and must be inspected for zebra and quagga mussels. Boat rentals and excursions are available at Trail Ridge Marina on the lake’s west side. Boats are restricted from exploring Osprey habitats. 
  • Camping: Green Ridge Campground is on the south side of the lake. It’s close proximity to Rocky Mountain National Park and various hiking trails make it a great campsite. Open May-Oct and has space available for tents and RVs. 
  • Hiking: East Shore Trail is right next to Green Ridge Campground, and is part of the Continental Divide National Scenic Trail. From East Shore Trail, you can climb 3.5 miles to Lookout Tower, which gives you a spectacular view of the lakes. 
  • Colorado River: The Colorado River flows close to Green Ridge Campground. 
  • Picnicking: Enjoy an afternoon at Shadow Mountain or Pine Beach picnic grounds, both on the west side of the lake.

Where is Shadow Mountain Lake?

Shadow Mountain Lake is part of the Arapaho National Recreation Area, and is just southwest of Grand Lake, Colorado.

A channel runs between Grand Lake (Colorado’s largest natural lake) and Shadow Mountain Lake.

Drive west on US 36. Go through the Beaver Meadows entrance of Rocky Mountain National Park. Continue west on Trail Ridge Road (US 34), and then south to Grand Lake. Shadow Mountain Lake is on the west end of Grand Lake and stretches southward.

When is Shadow Mountain Lake open?

The lake is open year round.

How much does Shadow Mountain Lake cost?

As part of the Arapaho National Recreation Area, there is a $5.00 daily recreation fee. Annual passes are available.

Who can I call if I have more questions?

Call the Arapaho National Forest, Sulphur District: (970) 887-4100