Explore trappers area - view hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

trappers area Map

It was absolutely breathtaking. I tried to get to the Devil's causeway in May, but could barely make it up the slope due to massive amounts of snow. Trying again in early August was much easier, with almost no snow to be seen. The first 2 or 3 miles to the Devil's causeway were dramatic, and amazing to say the least. Once you get above the treeline, and you reach the top of the ridge, you get an spectacular view of the Chinese wall. After the Devil's causeway, just be ready for a lot of flat, rolling alpine tundra that seems to go on forever. I didn't see a single person after the devil's causeway for 4 hours at least. If you like feeling isolated and really small, you'll love the alpine tundra. Just bring plenty of water and a jacket. (Also a rain jacket).

3 months ago

Nice out and back hike with some good elevation gain. The view at the top is great. We got there around 9:30 and had no trouble with parking. There are some steep areas so trekking poles are helpful.

Hit directions on All Trails and follow the map. You will have no problem finding the trail (even on the long dirt / rock road to the trail head). Trail is easy to follow but know the number as well as the name. In general stay to your right for Devil’s Causeway.

Hike itself isn’t too bad until you hit mile 2 or 2.5. At this point you start ascending and quickly. I found the ascent before the switchbacks and up to the top the hardest. The switchbacks themselves are long and gradual so not that bad.

Causeway is scary but doable. I don’t do well with heights and I turned back from Angel’s Landing. Just don’t look down and get down on all fours. I scrambled across and focused on finding steady and secure footholds. Go early to avoid the crowd.

Do the full loop! The scenery is amazing and unlike anything you will see in Colorado. There are a ton of lakes. The hike after the Causeway is basically all downhill. It’s long but not hard at all. There are a couple of uphills but nothing like the first part of the trail. Watch out for the sheep dogs!

Okay, so you all wrote some weird stuff on this review. lol The mapquest from this trail brings you directly there thank God! First of all, you do not need four wheel drive. It’s dirt and lightly washboard(y) but a car could make it up. (It could’ve been worse in early spring though who knows) The signage through out the town really isn’t there. (Again) Thankfully, maps from this page will bring you there. Park at Stillwater res. And again there’s no signs for the Causeway until you walk up the trail a little ways. Don’t turn left hiking towards Stillwater. Keep going straight! Thankfully someone carved into both of the signs halfway up on which direction the Causeway is. It’s pretty moderate getting to the Causeway. There’s a few steep, uphill sections but nothing major. Someone wrote that you couldn’t reach the top. Did you take the wrong trail? lol you can definitely hike to the Causeway and cross over! I’m not sure if the ten miles is turning around and going back over the Causeway to get back down or if you keep on going. I didn’t have a gps and I just crossed back over then hiked the same way back down. Enjoy:)

Spectacular view and good experience overall. Was a little scary crossing the causeway section, and the elevation change was a bit tiring. But Sooo glad I made it to the top for the view!

on Devil's Causeway

3 months ago

The hike starts off in a thickly wooded area, the air is cool and the wilderness is great. The first mile is like this. The last 2ish miles are exposed but you hike up to the top of the beautiful Flat Tops. Great views all around. If you’re feeling dangerous, cross the narrow rock bridge on top!

4 months ago

Excellent hike, steep in some areas. Well worth the journey especially if you find that you have the lake all to yourself; however I wouldn’t swim in it, there are leeches.... great fishing though, beautiful scenery, watch for cattle.

Not too bad of a hike. Just a scramble towards the end. The views up top are spectacular!

4 months ago

Good exercise and beautiful views. Overgrown in some areas. We were looking forward to swimming in the lake but it was too shallow and muddy. More like a pond.

On 7/30 my 14 yr old and I hiked up, crossed the Causeway, and decided to go back instead of doing the entire loop. We arrived at the Stillwater Reservoir trailhead the day before on a Sunday afternoon to an almost full lot, so we decided to camp out and do the hike in the morning the next day (would highly recommend). We started the hike at 7 am the next day and didn't see another person until we were almost to the saddle. Summited a little after 9 and had the Causeway to ourselves for about 20 minutes after a group got done with it themselves. The entire hike was a blast with spectacular views the whole way up. The last mile or so is pretty tough with an incline and switchbacks nearly the entire way, and then the final ascent is almost a straight shot to the top. The Causeway itself boils down to a mental battle; some conquer it, and some don't. I recommend the "low and slow" approach, which just means you're using your hands and feet the entire way to give yourself four points of contact. It was a little breezy at the top, as I suspect it usually is, so bringing a jacket or at least a sweatshirt would be recommended. Also, as some have already said here, some parts of the trail are not well-marked. If the Causeway is your ultimate goal, a good rule of thumb would be to "always stay right". Overall, it was an unforgettable experience that I'm so grateful I got to experience, especially with my son.

One last thing- When researching this hike, you might see articles calling it a "hidden gem". I'm of the thought that this is no longer the case as we passed, probably, 20-30 people on the way down, and arrived back at the trailhead just before noon to an already almost full lot. And this was on a Monday. All this to say, everyone can a should get outside and explore what amazing sights this state has to offer, it's just something to factor in when preparing your trip. If you like things a little more quiet on the trail, start early. Enjoy!

Hiked the loop on 7/11/18 started at about 8am. No snow on trails, awesome weather, and we only saw two other hikers the entire 10 miles. I’m not a seasoned biker by any means but I found the trails to be scarcely/confusingly marked. Take a map with you for sure!! The first two miles up to the causeway were kind of steep but then it’s pretty smooth sailing. There was a good amount of bugs in the forested areas FYI.

Killer wildflowers - July 12th

Clean up after yourself, including dog poop bags. Pack it in, pack it out. Put out fires and DON’T have a fire when there are bans! Beautiful but challenging.

5 months ago

Had a great time with my fam on this trail.
We always are up at the flat tops and have never done this, not sure why but it is done and what a great view...
gotta work though to get it or at least I had too.

5 months ago

Great hike with beautiful views. Dogs are allowed so I am not sure why that is not mentioned here. Took my boyfriend, pup and I about 3 hours round trip. Would definitely do this again.

Hiked the out-and-back on 6/30 and WOW it was perfect with wildflowers in full bloom! We started the hike around 9am (left Denver just before 6am) and I'd suggest starting by 9am or sooner to avoid the crowds. It's a great trail with the last section being much steeper than I expected, but it doesn't last for too long (almost all of the elevation gain is in the last 3/4 mile). We had the causeway to ourselves for about 45 minutes and the views from the top are amazing. On the way down there were hordes of people - one group of 20, two groups of 10, and tons of smaller groups. I'd only feel comfortable crossing the causeway one-by-one, so I expect it gets pretty backed up if you don't start early-ish.

The views are great. There is plenty of scrambling once you start to ascend from where the stick is. It is a long drive to the TH. The hike itself isn’t bad if you can scramble.

This is a jaw-droppingly beautiful route, couldn't stop smiling. Definitely make the trek out to Island Lakes! Deep in this 23-mile tour de force of breathtaking views, it's a gem among jewels.

Beautiful hike up to wall lake

Absolutely amazing scenery. Lake Charles is an amazing alpine lake surrounded by some pretty staggering peaks. The lake was pretty much frozen over, except at the shoreline. Breathtaking (and that's not just the cold).


There was comprehensive coverage of knee deep snow on the ground, starting about two miles below Lake Charles. This made an already hard-to-find trail nearly impossible to follow. So we were pretty much postholing for those two miles (and it took us about three hours each way). If you've got snowshoes, bring em (at least until things warm up). And bring your GPS. That was key.

My wife and I attempted on 5/27. We got started from the trailhead right around 7:30 AM. The first 2 miles were pretty straightforward and we made some good time. A lot of patches of snow covering the trail, but solid foot prints allowed us to keep on the trail. There were enough breaks that we could keep on the trail no problem. Once we got about 2 miles in, the trail was completely lost. We saw a trail marker sticking out of the snow saying "Please stay on the trail," but it was no where to be found. We spent about 2 hours trying to scale the face in the snow. By about 11 AM, we were post holing knee deep or even waist deep with every step. Made it to about 11,400 before the snow gave out underneath my wife and she slid back down about 100 feet on top of the snow. At that point, I slid down myself.

As Ben said, it is possible to reach the top, but not via the trail. There was a large area of rock exposed that may have made the top accessible via scrambling . More equipment would make it an easier trip up. All we had were some microspikes. Definitely would recommend starting early because as the sun heats up, the post holing becomes much worse. The way back down was significantly more challenging because all of the snow we simply walked on top in the morning was now melted and caused post holing with every step. Even without reaching the Causeway, it was still a beautiful and certainly memorable hike.

Flight 159- just finished this hike, it was way more intense than I had hoped. The south side was pretty close to impassable without an ice ax and crampons, I luckily found a spot where we could down climb but it was way off trail. There were a few sections where we cliffed out and had to find a different way down, not on the trail. The trail is covered in snow and we were postholing the entire trail. If you do it make sure you have the right equipment, I would even suggest snowshoes. In all it took us 9 hours to do a 10 mile hike. I might suggest doing it later in June. Good luck to the Matthew doing it on the 27th. Camping is plentiful and the road up is fine.

Matthew I appreciate the info. Was worth a shot to see if anyone had hiked it lately. I have been attempting to get through to the Yampa Ranger District with no success as of yet. I may just wing it and see what happens. Happy Trails!

Flight 159 - My wife and I are going to try to do the trail on 5/27/18. I also have been looking for condition reports but have not found any. Looking at the map of US Forest Service Road 900 there are multiple campgrounds along the way each maintained by the US Forest Service. Bear Lake Campground which is 4 miles from the trailhead is open as of 5/14/18 (https://www.fs.usda.gov/recarea/mbr/recarea/?recid=23030). Horseshoe Campground and Cold Springs Campground both still say "Unreachable" on their respective USFS pages, but both say they generally open on Memorial Day weekend, but with snow until mid-June. I will report back next Tuesday 5/29/18 on road and trail conditions that we encounter. USFS site for The Devils Causeway also states "Unreachable" (https://www.fs.usda.gov/recarea/mbr/recreation/hiking/recarea/?recid=79305&actid=50)

Has anyone been on this trail lately. Thinking about backpacking in the next week but looking for a condition report? thx

Fairly moderate trail. Does get difficult at times. Stunning scenery all the way to the lake.

The road is currently pretty impassible. I tried to get out there today with my 4WD Wrangler and ended up getting stuck in the deep snow along the sides. You could maybe get out there with a snowmobile or a 4WD that has chains but the snow really makes you fishtail, is slushy and deep in a lot of places, and feels like it's going to throw you off the road. The drive toward Yampa was gorgeous though so I can't wait until summer when the snow is gone to get back out here!

One of my favorite alpine lake in CO. Just beware the iron side trail... trail markers are not maintained and can be very difficult to follow. Bring your GPS!!!

I love this trail. Amazing views for the entire trip. Tons of water crossings in the spring. None of them are too crazy. Was out for 3 days and I saw 1 other person. Great solitude and amazing scenery. And the fishing is good.

Saturday, October 21, 2017

Great hike. Garmin has it at 10.7 miles. Starting to get a little windy and cool. Make sure you start early because by noon rain clouds and lightning develop. It took us roughly 5 1/2 hours to do the round trip with stops and lunch. It is approximately an hour and a half drive to trail head from Steamboat Springs. Elk hunting season has started so be aware this is a heavily hunted area and you may want to avoid it during rifle season.

Load More