DISTANCE
25.1 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
3,543 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dogs on leash

birding

camping

hiking

mountain biking

nature trips

walking

lake

river

views

wild flowers

wildlife

hiking
Tuesday, June 27, 2017

I did this trail last year in very early June and we had to park our SUV and set up camp only a mile or two from the dunes as the Medano Pass primitive road was blocked because of high water. The next morning we began hiking up the road and several miles later we found the Little Medano Creek trail to take us up to Medano Lake. Once on that trail it was very beautiful especially through the large Aspen trees. Only a few miles into the trail it began getting steep and, very unfortunately, snow became a problem. We lost the trail, much swearing ensued, the predictable noon thunderstorm was threatening, and we decided we had to turn around. It was a very long walk back to our camp. Total roundtrip distance was 18.6 miles. Too long and too much snow! Go later in the year than June!

Update: I did this trail again in July 2017 and it was 99% snow free! This time we were able to start from the trailhead. Was a very long day hike but was worth it. You will absolutely need a high-clearance 4x4 with low-range gearing if you want to drive to the trailhead. Otherwise, bring a backpack!