Lion Gulch Trail

MODERATE 53 reviews
#31 of 107 trails in

Lion Gulch Trail is a 6.3 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Lyons, Colorado that features a great forest setting and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, trail running, nature trips, and horses and is best used from June until August. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

DISTANCE
6.3 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
1374 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dogs on leash

hiking

horseback riding

nature trips

trail running

forest

views

rocky

Trail is open after being closed due to floods in early 2017. The trail has changed and is not well marked. More work will be done to improve the trail going forward.

backpacking
1 month ago

Nice hike.. Did a one night backpack, didn’t see any wildlife but there was plenty of sign surrounding meadow. Woke to a couple inches of fresh snow and fog around the peaks. Beautiful.

hiking
2 months ago

The upper part of the trail was icy today so I turned around. Otherwise it is a great trail

hiking
2 months ago

This was a beautiful hike! Very icy in some spots still, but still doable in just hiking boots. There aren’t any spectacular views, to be expected for a gulch hike, but the homestead meadows at the end are gorgeous. I will definitely be back in the spring/summer!

hiking
2 months ago

Great hike! If you're going in the winter, be aware some parts on the trail are super icy so be prepared! The trail isn't really marked throughout so be aware of where you are going, easy to get lost if there is snow on the ground! About a half miles to the start of homesteads, the first two are not intact. Free parking!

hiking
3 months ago

Went on a snowy, but calm morning and it was beautiful. So quiet and peaceful. There is a couple of inches of snow on the trail, no a big deal. Just be careful because I came across multiple spots of ice hiding under the snow cover and wiped out once, almost a couple other times, because of it. Beautiful trail and not too strenuous. I saw nobody until I was almost done. Traction and walking pole would be helpful but not necessary.

4 months ago

Know when going to see homesteads that you still will need to hike a minimum of 2-4 miles MORE to actually see a homestead. Sarah Walker homestead is the closest, only 1/4 mile longer but is burned to the ground in the 2002 fires.

hiking
4 months ago

We took the dogs out Friday for a warm-up hike before snowshoeing. The trail isn't well marked in some places but is a fairly easy hike. The down side is the lazy hikers who leave their dog poop bags on the side of the trail. At the moment is has some beautiful tiny waterfalls and ice formations.

hiking
4 months ago

The trail is very easy to follow. There are some steep sections and there is a bit of ice in spots. We did it without traction, no problem. The creek is frozen enough to walk across, although most crossings have enough rocks that you don't have to walk on the ice. We only saw one other group today. It's a beautiful walk, sheltered from the wind.

hiking
4 months ago

This was a fun trail to get onto very mellow but fun with some options after getting through the canyon part .

hiking
6 months ago

Great walk-in the forest. Maintenance and traffic make this trail straightforward to follow. Several water crossings, all minor. No views until the meadows, then nice forested hillsides. Homesteads are a must see for everyone. Good to have the trail open again.

hiking
6 months ago

nice trail, has had a lot of work rebuilding after flood, looks great, hikes easy and very pretty

hiking
7 months ago

This was a really pretty trail that was relatively easy - just one small stretch of rocky, steep trail. It was a great trail for the dogs. We were a little disappointed by the lack of any awesome views but the history of the old homesteads made up for it.

7 months ago

Windy & relaxed switchbacks, nice leaf coverage, great for dogs (which can be off-leash) and relatively few people. Overall very lovely!

hiking
8 months ago

A nice moderate-effort hike you can do in a few hours. Previous reviewers mentioned that the new trail was hard to follow in places... we saw that a lot of very recent work has been done to improve that, and we had no trouble. The trail itself is not remarkable in any way, and doesn't offer any 'wow' views. However, the historical information and ruins are very interesting and worth seeing. So 3 stars for the trail, but 5 stars for the history - averages to a 4.

hiking
8 months ago

Officially, Lion Gulch Trail goes 3.7 miles (not 2.8 as AllTrails indicates), but once into the meadow area, I would at least go visit the Griffith homestead area as it has 3 different building ruins and this area is easy walking.
There are a few rough patches to the trail, but the distance, steepness, and elevation is not more than moderate. All three of us wore shorts and I thought about the poison ivy as the trail sometimes goes through bushy areas. However, none of us had a problem, but still be aware.
While this trail has few great vistas, I thought it had other things to offer and was pleasantly surprised.

hiking
8 months ago

If this is moderate, what is hard?

This is a beautiful trail. It was like the best of Middle Earth, Narnia and Colorado in one trail. It was, however quite difficult, with steep rocky hills, and my mom and I were both sore afterwards but we felt it was worth it.

hiking
10 months ago

Trail is open, the trail has changed and was not well marked. went crosss country and saw 2 bucks and 1 snow shoe hare. Ranger was doing some minor work on new bridge and was going to try to block old trail better

11 months ago

I like this trail. word to the wise re: poison ivy you can get it from the stems as much as from the leaves. If you spray any possible contact areas, pant legs, shoes,dogs with a light soapy water solution before you touch em you can decrease the severity n likely eliminate all the oil residue that is the cause of the blisters

hiking
Monday, August 29, 2016

Closed, Schmosed!

Yes, it is closed because the main bridge is out at the first crossing over the Little Tom. Fortunately, after about June or so, the water is low and slow enough that you can easily cross over to hit the rest of the trail. In terms of the trail itself, some volunteer work was performed on at least part of the trail in 2014 and a new pedestrian bridge was built over the second Little Tom crossing, thereby clearing the path for resumption of hiking.

Hiked much of it yesterday (encountered some poison ivy and decided to turn around past a certain point, so I didn't make it to the homesteads) and what I hiked looked great, so much so that I'll go back once the ivy has been frosted over and killed.

Disclaimer: The trail is officially closed, as the signs indicate, so I cannot officially recommend accessing it. This review is for entertainment/informational purposes only. I was never here.

Monday, July 04, 2016

Haven't even hiked it yet but the fact that fallen trees and washed out ground is present makes it so much more exciting!!!!

hiking
Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Thought I'd check it out, hoping it was open by now since I wanted to hike with my dog, and it is still closed. Wonder if it will be reopened eventually.

hiking
Friday, October 30, 2015

Yes the trail is closed due to the flood that took out the bridge, the creek is so low that you can easily cross, and the trail goes on from there. My hiking buddy and my went straight up the mountain 1,300 ft to the top off trail and hand a wonderful time, but it was extremely difficult through all the dead trees. Not for beginner hikers. There is a campsite at the top carefully laid stones, and a full fireplace with cooking utensils and a latrine made of rocks. If you want to be off the grid before the snow comes, this is your last resort.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Trail is closed- people are hiking back anyways, but having difficulty finding and staying on a trail. So sad, I've been wanting to do this hike for a long time.

Sunday, July 05, 2015

Trail closed. 7/5/15

hiking
Sunday, September 07, 2014

closed due to floods.

hiking
Wednesday, August 21, 2013

This hike was my first one since moving back to Colorado from Arizona. Went with my buddy and it was an awesome hike. We went early in the morning around 10 and it was not crowded at all. We hiked all the way to the top and explored one of the homesteads. The trail is small and enjoyable with a nice stream to follow with a lot of trees. It rained and hailed on us at the top but we hid behind a rock and ate lunch, it was a beautiful scene. Will hike this trail again sometime.

hiking
Sunday, July 07, 2013

One of my favorite hikes, have done it wary and late summer. Trail can get very soggy in early summer (May). Love the variety of the trail and the history with the homesteads!

hiking
Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Such a beautiful hike! It's about 3.14 miles from the trailhead to the kiosk that begins Homestead Meadows, which is very cool to walk through. The beginning of the hike is steep with huge steps. From there it's pretty smooth with with some rocky points. However, at the 2-2.5 mile mark is the hardest park of the hike. A very steep ascent that's very rocky and also has lots of loose gravel so beware of your ankles here. There's lots of stream crossings, I counted six total. I got to the trailhead at 8-815am on a Sunday and the lot had only 5-6 cars. I recommend going at this time because during our descent which was around noon-1pm, the trail got very crowded. Also, people like to bring their dogs on this hike so dogs are everywhere during the afternoon hours. Even more so, the dogs are unleashed even though it CLEARLY says at the trailhead that animals MUST be leashed. Overall, this hike was absolutely beautiful and peaceful in the morning, I'd definitely do it again!

hiking
Tuesday, November 27, 2012

A wonderful hike for just about any time of year. We hiked it at the end of Nov. and plan to go back in late summer or fall. There are a few water crossings that could be a little tricky in the spring and early summer. Homestead Meadows was very interesting.

hiking
Sunday, July 01, 2012

The historical walk through Pioneer America in Homestead Meadows makes this a must for Northern Colorado. Leave early in the morning and bring lunch. You will want to explore the Homestead Meadows Loop with information markers at the half a dozen different homesteads. You will get an appreciation of how tough these pioneers were.

Bring the pooch, but please put 'em on a leash. You're a long way out to have to take care of your dog after it gets into a fight with another canine.

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