Located just outside Estes, Gem Lake is a lovely little rain-filled lake back-dropped by a large rock edifice. The views are beautiful on the way up. About halfway, there's an oft-photographed rock with a hole that goes clear through it, and this has made an interesting frame for numerous hikers' heads.
The altitude gain is 971 feet but the hike is just 3.3 miles round-trip, so this hike will be perfect for getting in shape for the summer hiking season.
There's no need to pack a lunch for this one. We'll just head back to my (Norm's) house after the hike for chili, cornbread and salad, and probably some alcoholic libations as well. If the fancy strikes us, I have numerous board games we can play: Apples to Apples, Balderdash, Buzzwords, etc.
We'll carpool from Starbucks at 17th and Hover.
Here are the directions to the Lumpy Ridge trailhead:
To reach the Lumpy Ridge Trailhead: From US 36 in downtown Estes Park, drive north on MacGregor Avenue. Shortly after crossing US Highway 34, MacGregor Avenue will turn into Devils Gulch Road. Continue on Devils Gulch Road bypassing the gateway to the MacGregor Ranch area. Less than a mile ahead, the turn off to the trailhead is marked by an NPS sign. Turn left (north) onto the trailhead access road which dead ends several hundred yards from Devils Gulch Road. The trailhead and parking area have pit toilets.