At 9,555′ feet in elevation, Weller Lake is an incredibly scenic body of water in the Collegiate Peaks Wilderness of the White River National Forest. Weller Lake can be reached via a short hiking trail located about 7.5 miles southeast of Aspen, Colorado in Pitkin County.
Visitors must take Highway 82 (Independence Pass) to reach the parking lot for the Weller Lake Trailhead. This route is closed seasonally, and Weller Lake can usually be accessed from May to late September. Weller Lake is free to visit, but parking may be limited during peak seasons.
Activities at Weller Lake
To access the lake, hikers must climb approximately 300 feet in elevation along the 0.6-mile (1 km) Weller Lake Trail. Upon arrival, visitors are rewarded with breathtaking views of the still water set against aspen and pine forests below towering 12,000-foot mountains like New York Peak and Mt Shimer.
Birding and Wildlife: Weller Lake is a great spot for birdwatching, with warblers, tanagers, crossbills, sapsuckers, willows, woodpeckers, and jays all calling the area home. Colorado wildlife such as mountain goats, bighorn sheep, elk, and deer may also be seen near Weller Lake. Visitors should not approach wildlife and dogs must be kept on a leash at all times.
Camping: Across the street from the Weller Lake Trailhead, the National Forest Service maintains the Weller Campground, which contains 11 semi-developed campsites available for a small overnight fee. The campground is extremely popular and campsites are available on a first-come, first-served basis with a five day limit on stays. Weller Campground is open from May until late September with vault toilets, drinking water, trash services, picnic tables, and fire pits on site.
Backcountry camping is also available within the Collegiate Peak Wilderness surrounding Weller Lake. Campsites are limited at the lake, and fires are not permitted (camp stoves only). Backpackers are required to pack in and pack out all of their belongings and should be familiar with the area’s rules and etiquette before their visit.
Fishing: A valid Colorado fishing license is required to fish in Weller Lake and its surrounding waters. Most commonly, native cutthroat and brown trout are caught in both Weller Lake and the Roaring Fork River located next to the parking area.
There are additional activities within the White River NF.
Address: Weller Lake, Aspen, CO 81611
Season: May to late September
Fees: Camping Fees
Map & Information: fs.usda.gov/Internet/FSE_DOCUMENTS/stelprdb5186959.pdf