Explore the most popular backpacking trails in White River National Forest with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

backpacking
14 hours ago

Great views!!

Wonderful trail, moderate paced hiking but still challenging enough to be fun. Stunning views throughout the trail.

Only down side is that there are a few patches of thick vegetation throughout the trail, but overall, fantastic.

The Marvine Loop trail is nearly snow free and passable around the entire loop, as of a June 13-15, 2018 trip.

Long and hard, but worth it. Camped at East Cross Creek. Woke up and hit the trail at 6:30am. Took me 4.5 hours to summit and 2.5 to come back down. Bouldering at the top is exhausting for the last 1/4 mile. Would highly recommend trekking poles to save your knees. Came back down and camped another night and hiked out the last three miles on the third day. Not my favorite 14er, but not the least favorite either.

We camped at Lake Constantine and did a day hike to the lower and upper Tuhare Lakes which was well worth the effort and time. The views were outstanding. There was thirteen of us from all over the country and this was a great place to hike with a group of this size.

Took the ditch trail to meet this trail up to the lake on 7/14. The wildflowers were beautiful and everywhere! The lake and views are amazing. It was super hot though and there are mosquitos so bring bug spray. My Garmin clocked just over 6 miles to the lake and more like 3,000 elevation gain. The first 3 miles or so are hilly so there is some decrease in elevation in the beginning, but the last 2 miles are nothing but up.

Wildflowers are out and beautiful!

hiking
2 days ago

Question for those who have done Peaks Trail from Frisco to Breckenridge: Parking in Frisco? We will be driving into Frisco and want to park and hike to Breckenridge and then take the shuttle back. Looking for a safe place to leave the car overnight that is close enough to get on the trail. We intend to hike halfway in on a Friday, camp overnight, and then finish to Breckenridge in the morning. Anyone done this before? thoughts? Thanks in advance!

This was pretty strenuous for me compared to most non-14er Colorado hikes. The final stretch up the Fancy Pass side can take it out of you, but what a reward at the top. Definitely pair it with the Missouri Lakes trail to make the 8 mile loop. You get to walk along side beautiful lakes for 2 miles and it’s not harder at all on that side, just a bit longer.

3 days ago

Camp at Constantine and hike to the upper lakes. Beautiful scenery and amazing wild flowers.

One of the most beautiful and rewarding hikes I have done!! The only annoyances were the mosquitos/flies and the final 2 mile uphill (especially since we were in campsite 11). I found the whole area to be very clean and peaceful. Although all sites were booked on the website, we found that less than half were actually occupied on the Wednesday and Thursdays nights we stayed. I would consider this a MUST do hike if you can physically do the mileage with backpack.

This hike was INCREDIBLE! We camped at the trailhead Saturday night and took 11 hours to summit on Sunday, including a delicious hour-long respite at the top (and multiple breaks along the way). Started our hike just after 5 am and had the sunrise to warm us up on the first 1000 feet. Hiking poles were incredibly helpful with the 5600 feet of elevation gain. Layers, extra food and sugar, and tons of water are essential. We were 2 adults and a 40 pound dog and went through about 8 liters of water (though there is a lovely river valley about 2 hours in to the hike that allow for some filtration opportunities). Above treeline was very rocky, making for some sore knees and feet. Would highly recommend this hike, but not to first time 14er summiters, flatlanders, or those not in good shape.

backpacking
6 days ago

Did the Fancy pass trail and finished the loop with Missouri lakes/pass. It is a fairly difficult hike with a pack but well worth it as the views and flowers are amazing. Also worth bringing a fishing rod as the brook trout up there are very beautiful. only thing is definitely bring bug spray as there are a good amount of mosquitoes around the lakes.

off road driving
6 days ago

We did the drive from Aspen to Created Butte on this Jeep trail.. The scenery was a beautiful and the Jeep trail was great. There were some big rocks and narrow spots but overall a great drive. You’d need a 4x4 to do it because of the rocks and other obstacles. I did it in a 2018 Jeep Wrangler and it was effortless for it. There was a guy that came up in an older Montero and he did just fine. I think he’s done it before and has some experience though.

Tough for me but loved the challenge!!

7 days ago

Pack it in, pack it out- including dog poop bags. Follow fire restrictions- no fires if there is a ban. Hard trip but peaceful destination.

Went all the way up to Suprise Lake (the second beaver dam at the end) beautiful views of Mt of the Holy Cross and the bridge over the creek and waterfall is stunning. It's pretty rocky and a few points require some minor scrambling but nothing me my friend and my German Sheppard couldn't do. Probably a hard moderate rating to be more accurate.

hiking
10 days ago

Amazing views will deff be back!!

It is a moderate hike, and the whole trails goes through the forest, so there is shade. A kind of hike where you enjoy every step, not just the destination. The trail itself is pretty, and the lake at the end is beautiful.
We hiked a little further (to the waterfall at 12,000').

Completed this trail on 7/7

This was an amazing trail! The mileage here is a little off. My garmin watch calculated it around 9.25 miles each way(18.5 round trip). The trail takes you through several different landscapes which adds a lot of great visuals for the hike. It is about 7 miles to the ford crossing which you will need to either take off your boots totally or switch to other footwear to cross without significant water intake. The final 2 miles are very tough and up hill. A full pack certainly makes it more difficult. Once at the hot springs, it was a great relief. With the new permitting system, our stay had about half the sites occupied. Some of the grounds were on a slant which made sleeping not ideal but some of the spots were perfect and flat. We watched the sun set in the hot springs and called it a night.

Make sure to bring bug spray, your bear canister, and human waste bags! The rangers are on the lookout for folks not bringing the bear canister as their reports say the activity is high in the area.

Also, be mindful of when you stop and rest. A moose came out of the trees and there wasn't much for cover besides a rock and a very thin tree. Luckily it saw us and kept walking.

This trail was absolutely beautiful! The hot springs at the top are completely worth it.

The trail leads through several valleys, fields of wild flowers and refreshing river crossings! My boyfriend and I reached the hot springs at about 4 hours (moving time), by keeping a good pace with the bags on. The last stretch was a little bit of a false hope due to seeing signs for the campsites, then ended up trekking about another mile to our site. The last stretch is all up hill. We ended up doing 9.1 miles to the hot springs.

hiking
12 days ago

Absolutely loved this hike. Fantastic views of surrounding 14er peaks (Capital, Maroon Bells, Pyramid). Our GPS showed this as a 13.4 mile hike with 4,600 feet of gain. We are both experienced hikers and in good shape, took us 3.5 hours up, and almost 3 back. The first 3.5 to 4 miles to the lakes is easy as you only gain around 1,600 feet during this portion. The next 3 miles will test you some. You take several switchbacks up above the lake to the side of Sopris peak. From there the next section is a steep 300 feet up and very rocky. Once up to the ridge the climb is stunning and the path is pretty easy to follow to the summit. You will go over a false summit and go along a second ridge to get to the true summit. While you can peer over ledges down thousands of feet, the trails are more than wide enough to not feel exposed. I am not a huge fan of exposure and had zero issues. Enjoy!!!!

trail running
15 days ago

It’s been a long time since I’ve hiked this but one of the greatest hikes I have ever been on.

One of the most beautiful trails I've been on in Colorado. Great views of the surrounding areas (and wildfires...). Also one of the most difficult trails I've completed. The up and down doesn't seem that bad until the final up. Little to no snow on the trail. BRING BUG SPRAY. Still feeling those mosquito bites.

It’s beautiful up here. I’d like to hike it further next time.

Hiked 8.5 miles round trip starting in Copper Mountain. Has a few creek crossings and beautiful hike through the forest. A few cyclist came by us,a few people trying to complete Segment 8. Nice day hike.

hiking
18 days ago

I hiked the loop starting from Fancy Pass, to Fancy Lake, then up the pass to a valley, then up Missouri Pass, then down toward Missouri Lakes, ending at the Missouri Lakes trailhead. I believe it is a little over an 8 mile hike (felt longer).
The hike up to Fancy Pass is good with moderately steep climbs. Fancy Lake is beautiful.
After that, you'll head toward a stream crossing that seems like the wrong direction. After crossing, you'll make a sharp left and head up toward the pass.
The pass was still snow covered. You can stay far left and avoid most of the snow or stay near the path and just cross through the snow. The pass is where you really feel the elevation gain in terms of steepness and breathing.
At the top, the views are spectacular but the wind can knock you over (or take off your hat).
The valley below is covered in wildflowers. It is just stunning. The marmots and pikas are plentiful.
Then you head up Missouri Pass, a much shorter and friendlier climb. Again, at the top the views are stunning.
Heading down from the pass you travel past several lakes, then you return to what seems like a normal forested trail and head towards the Missouri lakes trailhead.
While anyone can do this, it has some parts that are not easy for all. To get up Fancy Pass, you need to be at some level of fitness.

We completed over 1.5 days days by camping at the creek. Spots were available late afternoon on a Saturday. We left for summit at 4:20am on Sunday and had the top all to ourselves. Wildflowers are everywhere and the trail is in great shape. Loved it!

Surprised to find that Surprise Lake was really just an enlarged boggy pond. Lots of bugs there. However hike was beautiful until about 3/4 of the way to the lake. Gorgeous river which we hiked down to in a few spots. Lots of ginormous Queen Anne’s Lace wildflowers and a beautiful field of sunflowers near the top as well.

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