Little Medano Creek Trail to Medano Lake

MODERATE 5 reviews

Little Medano Creek Trail to Medano Lake is a 25.1 mile lightly trafficked out and back trail located near Mosca, Colorado that features a river and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Distance: 25.1 miles Elevation Gain: 3,543 feet Route Type: Out & Back

dogs on leash



mountain biking

nature trips


bike touring

bird watching




wild flowers


Directions from Pinyon Flats Campground: Head north from the campground near site 62.

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!

Tuesday, July 07, 2015

Lovely trail that skirts the sand dunes. The trail is quite sandy as well. Did this as a 1-night backpacking trip with my little brother--it was his first time backpacking and he isn't used to the elevation--so I wanted something that was pretty easy. We camped along the 4 wheel drive trail by the creek. The campsites were wonderful and had established fire rings and bear boxes. This trail doesn't really take you to a place where you can easily access the dunes on the north side. I think if we had had more time, we would have explored the Sand Ramp Trail and tried to access the dunes from that.

1 month ago

Sunday, May 28, 2017

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