Mount Belford is a 7 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Granite, Colorado that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as difficult. The trail is primarily used for hiking, running, nature trips, and horses and is best used from May until October. Dogs and horses are also able to use this trail.

Distance: 7.0 miles Elevation Gain: 4,520 feet Route Type: Out & Back

dog friendly

hiking

horseback riding

nature trips

running

views

wild flowers

wildlife

Please note that the restrooms are currently closed due to COVID 19. A very straightforward fourteener through the magnificent Missouri Gulch From the trailhead cross Clear Creek using a well constructed bridge. Just over the creek is the sign-in for the trail. A little further down the trail and off to the left is the cemetery for the town of Vicksburg. This makes for a short interesting stop. The trail then quickly heads up a steep slope using some nicely cut switchbacks. After breaking treeline and entering Missouri Gulch you will come to an intersection that is labeled with a sign. The sign will direct you to your left. The ridge of Belford will be directly ahead of you and this will be your path to the summit. This hike goes through an unbelievable number of switchbacks. However they are much better than the origninal trail that just went straight up. Take the switchbacks all the way up the ridge, pass a false summit until you see the orange colored rock protrusion that comprises the actual summit.

hiking
2 days ago

Hiked on 5/26. Great condition! Few spots with snow/mud but weren’t an issue. I actually took the Elkhead Pass down, and really like the view hiking down that way. But Elkhead Pass still has big areas covered with snow that obscure the trail. I got lost few times because of that but managed to get back on track using the pre-downloaded trail map. Saw some mountain goats from afar too!

hiking
muddy
rocky
3 days ago

Such a beautiful hike! Barely any snow left on the trail, but a few areas were a little muddy. No need for spikes/snow shoes though! Overall, this was a pretty challenging hike but the views are worth it!

3 days ago

Great trail. Beautiful all the way and well maintained. I did not find any places where it was hard to see or follow the trail. As of 5/26 almost all the snow was melted and the conditions were summer-like. Gorgeous views of the mountains on top. The bathroom at the trailhead was closed, so be prepared to pack everything out.

hiking
icy
muddy
no shade
8 days ago

Such a beautiful hike. There were only a few spots with snow. Other than that it was ideal hiking weather yesterday on 5-22. The views are amazing!

hiking
blowdown
snow
19 days ago

5/10/20- After crossing over the bridge at the beginning of the trailhead, you’re welcomed with shaded trail that immediately begins to push uphill. Prepared to hit 13-15 switchbacks within the first 0.5 miles of the trail. Once passing by those, the trail begins to straighten out (still pushing uphill). You’re then introduced to what looks like an avalanche field, with hundreds of trees and snow blown down. There is a small make shift tree crossing over the creek. Its almost impossible to find the trail, but it’s located towards the middle of the blowdown. Continue through the wooded area in front of you. You’ll find the old cabin right at the edge of the wooded area. As it opens up to the meadow, there is still a lot of snow, 2’-4’ in areas. The trail is still covered at this point. Push on until you see the split. The sign is visible and you’ll be able to see it in plain sight. The trail up the mountain is strenuous, but clear and visible. Once you hit the false summit, there was snow on top. The trail disappeared from there, but you can see the actual summit from there.

hiking
scramble
7 months ago

This one was rough, it’s so steep and narrow once you get to the scramble. Definitely take elkhead pass to go down, because I did not and it was terrible, it took me longer to go down than it did to go up! Very difficult, very long, and the weather is very bipolar from this peak! We experienced ton of heat, insane wind, and snow a couple different times throughout the day, I felt like I kept stopping a ton to change take off and put on clothes.

hiking
no shade
snow
7 months ago

Hiked today, beautiful views at the summit. There was a few inches snow on half the trail but no ice really, got up to a foot deep in spots tho. Took us about 6 hours

hiking
rocky
scramble
washed out
8 months ago

Be ready to climb, and climb and slip but once you brave the endless switchbacks it’s worth the trouble

hiking
8 months ago

Beautiful, nearly solitary hike. Easy to follow trail. Saw lots of wildlife. Breathtaking views at Summit. Aspen are turning color and are beautiful. Unrelenting uphill hike. Started steep and finished steeper. I recommend hiking poles to control slipping on descent. Our Golden Retriever/Lab/Border Collie mix dog had no trouble with the route, but was distracted by pikas, marmots, squirrels, and chipmunks. Use a leash if your dog chases critters, they could get seriously injured on steep drop offs.

hiking
8 months ago

Very difficult hike. Went with 4 friends and this was the first 14er any of us had done. It was psychotically harder than the 3 hr mtn bike ride we did the day before. Would not recommend for beginners. Beautiful views.

hiking
8 months ago

I climbed this peak on August 5th, 2019. We were at the parking lot and ready to begin the hike by 0410. My 4 companions and I all had good strong headlamps, so seeing the trail was no problem. The trail started with a fairly steep incline and did not let up the whole way to the summit. We decided that it was good to start in the dark because at least we couldn't see the steepness of the trail! Lol. The switchbacks up the slope were very challenging. This was a tough climb, but taking it slow, we summited Belford by 10:30. Three of us decided to go fir Mt Oxford as well, and summited that at 1205. The descent to the saddle heading toward Oxford had a very steep initial pitch, but became more mild before reaching the saddle. the eastern slope of Belford to the saddle was much steeper than the west slope! Oxford was a relatively easy climb, but we were all somewhat tanked from the ascent up Belford. We took the gentler Elkhead pass trail back from the slope of Belford to get back to the trailhead. It added about 2 miles to the hike, but it was worth it. All said, a great climb with fantastic views.

hiking
8 months ago

I hiked Mount Belford on 9/2 with my husband. It was our very first 14-er. We had a great day on the mountain! We arrived by 8am and the parking lot was full — we had to make a spot work in front of the bathrooms (the trailhead has one compost toilet). The hike is unrelenting, the trail starts going up and doesn’t stop until you summit. It was exhausting. It was also beautiful. We travelled from Philadelphia and consider ourselves quite fit and this hike was very challenging. My legs are toast. Our route was Missouri Gulch trail to Mt Belford Trail onto the summit. Due to how strenuous, steep, and rocky the ascent was, we decided to take Elkhead Pass down. This added extra miles to the total hike, but was easier and less scary (also very beautiful through idealic meadows with wildflowers and even some snow). My watch docked us at 10.5 miles (and 6.5 hours) when all was said and done. Also — the road to the trailhead is unpaved but our 2wd rental sedan did fine. Bring sunscreen and reapply!

hiking
8 months ago

This hike is NO JOKE! Very difficult, even for a fit person. The elevation gain in comparison with the distance is a serious test. The trail is also 9 miles, not 7. We took the "straight up" switchback route due to not being able to find the valley trail. I brought my dogs with me and they did great. The trail isn't too rocky where I would be concerned about their paws and it lined a river for a couple miles which helped keep them hydrated. It wasn't a crowded trail by any means, we ran into maybe 20 people. Bring lots of water, snacks, and perseverance. The views are killer throughout and that summit is so so satisfying. We didn't hike to Oxford due to our poor timing, 8 hours round trip including an hour spent at the summit. Don't forget your sunscreen! And maybe some bug spray. Didn't see many mosquitoes but got bit a few times. There's a bathroom in the parking lot and the road to the trail head is a well groomed dirt road. Don't forget to hydrate!

hiking
8 months ago

brutal

hiking
9 months ago

We hiked straight up the trail to Mount Belford . It is steep and has a lot of switchbacks, but there are flatter places through Missouri Gulch. We hiked over to Oxford and then on the way back skipped the summit of Belford and went around via Elk Pass. That is 1 mile longer but much less rocky and easier on the knees

hiking
rocky
9 months ago

Good hike! I started at 5:40 AM and within an hour I was pretty much above treeline. The trail is super easy to follow all the way up to the summit, and the total ascent took 2 hr 40 min. On the way down, it's super slippery (I definitely fell and ate shit), so take it slow until you get on more level terrain again. All in all, roundtrip time was 4 hr 15 mins, short hike and good views :-)

hiking
9 months ago

This is a hard hike. It's longer than stated and really steep and traction wasn't good. Make sure you bring plenty of water and food. This is one of the most difficult 14ers I've done.

hiking
bugs
scramble
snow
9 months ago

hiking
9 months ago

Hard but beautiful hike! We started at 4:30 and had camped very close to the trailhead the night before but the parking lot had already filled up when we started. Starting in the dark was nice because you didn't notice how steep the first round of switchbacks are to the Missouri Gulch. The forest was a nice break in steady incline but once you start up the mountain it's tough. Constant elevation gain the whole way from there. Assent took us 3.5 hours - we were a slow but steady pace. On our way down we were shocked how steep our climb up was. But beautiful views make it worth it.

hiking
10 months ago

Gorgeous Peak. Steady climb almost the whole way with some fairly steep sections towards the end, but very short. Trail is very easy to follow. Also fairly crowded. Total mileage from your car is 10.5. The number listed here is from the trailhead which is a ways in.

hiking
10 months ago

We started after 8am. The parking lot and road was full. Needless to say we hiked with a lot of people. We made the Belford summit at about 1pm. The weather was perfect. We made the Oxford summit at about 2pm. We had seen and heard several people taking the loop around for the return trip. It would be easier but a little longer. No problem, right. A storm rolled over us at a lot 4pm. And we lost the trail under snow pack as we had been running to get down as far as possible. We assumed the “squat on our feet and kiss your back side goodbye the lightening is all around you” position for about 45 mins. The storm passed. We found the trail. We made it down safely. And now it’s a fun story to tell. So start early in the first light and get off the mountain before 2pm. This was an epic hike.

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