Mount Belford

HARD 57 reviews

Mount Belford is a 7 mile lightly 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, trail 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

trail running

views

wild flowers

wildlife

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.

26 days ago

Great hike but very challenging for someone in moderate shape. Not my first 14er, but arguably the hardest one I've done to date. difficult switch backs at the beginning, moderate uphill in the middle, followed by more difficult switchbacks at the top. opted for the longer but more forgiving Missouri Gulch route on the way down. Started at 7 a.m. and summited at 11:30. wanted to continue on to Oxford what was completely gassed at the top of Belford.

hiking
26 days ago

This was a spectacular day to climb my second 14er! The weather was partly cloudy with mild temperatures. Since it was a Saturday, there were a fair number of people gathering at the trail head and lots of cars filling the parking lot and lining the road. For the most part, this hike was all about the ascent-from beginning to end there were many steep grades and innumerable switchbacks all the way up. It was definitely more challenging then Pikes Peak via the Barr Trail. On the decent back to Missouri Gulch Trail Head, It was a longer return for a more varied terrain with beautiful valley views and less steep grades. The ascent took about 3 1/2 hours. Afterword, my legs were seriously spent with aching in my knees from the nearly 4 miles to the trailhead.

1 month ago

Challenging hike, but so worth it! Three of us from Kansas City were able to make it to the top- it did, however, take us all day. Beautiful views the whole way. We hiked up the Belford standard route and came down through Elk Head Pass. Added about a mile, but saved our knees from the switchbacks.

hiking
1 month ago

Lots and Lots of switch backs but a great well marked trail. Lots of people and parking is limited at trail head but overall a wonderful hike.

hiking
1 month ago

My eleventh fourteener and one of the hardest ones I've done. I consider myself to be in pretty good shape and found this to be a tough hike. Would not recommend for a first fourteener. Steep right from the get-go and there's an endless amount of switchbacks. Wanted to go for Oxford but there were some dark clouds rolling in, so I skipped it to stay on the safe side but will come back for it another day.

hiking
2 months ago

7/7/18: Gorgeous but challenging hike. It was my first 14er. The switchbacks were killer. Started a little after 8am and summited around 11:45. We didn’t do Oxford but we hiked past Mt Belford’s summit and looped around to take the Missouri Gulch Trail down instead of double backing through the switchbacks. It added a little more distance but my legs and feet were happy not to go down the steep switchbacks. Weather started moving in towards the end so we had to pick up the pace. Over all it took us about 6 1/2 hours round trip.

2 months ago

lots of wildflowers in bloom on this trail right now. It's kinda like doing shadow canyon on steroids

hiking
2 months ago

Summited Belford on 6/30/18 and the trail was completely clear of snow with beautiful weather. This was my first 14er but I would not recommend it for a beginner. I am a frequent hiker but this was difficult for me. Over half the hike is switchbacks above tree line but when you do make it to the summit you have amazing views. It took my boyfriend and I 4 hours to summit and 3 hours to get back down. The summit was cold and winds so wear layers, a hat, and gloves.

hiking
3 months ago

Completed this hike on 6/10. Had an amazing blue sky day throughout the entire hike and could see for miles. Winds kicked up around half way up but nothing a short break couldn't fix. With all of the switchbacks on this trail, it made the incline slightly better than going straight up. Did not have time to go to Oxford which is right over the saddle at the top(another 500ft elevation change). The decent may be more challenging than the ascent. It is very steep and when coupled with loose gravel, it can be very challenging. Hiking poles would be a great idea! Trails are clear of all snow and ice so leave your spikes at home.

Overall, it was an amazing hike even though it was the most challenging hike I have ever done.

hiking
3 months ago

Hiked on 5/19 - The first 2 miles is switchback heaven, there must be 30 of them! Once to the top of the initial climb the trail flattens out as you make your way up to the base of Mt. Belford... beautiful views once to the top - continued on to Mt. Oxford.

4 months ago

Hiked 5/13, trail was all clear with little to no postholing. Brought traction but never took it out of the bag, was a perfect day to summit

11 months ago

Me and my gf camped out a couple miles past the Missouri Gulch Trailhead the night before. The dirt road up is washboardy, but we made it just fine in a 2010 Grand Caravan. This hike was a breath of fresh air after climbing Democrat the week before, which was nothing but rocks. The trail to Belford is steep and beautiful. Winding through the changing aspens on our way to the upper switch backs was awesome. it was incredibly windy, which made the exposure areas a bit menacing, but all and all, a great, physical hike with extremely rewarding views.

Sunday, August 13, 2017

First 14er, very strenuous, but extremely gratifying. Incredible views looking down as far as the eyes can see.

hiking
Friday, July 14, 2017

This was my 2nd 14er. Lots of variety in the terrain, great views along the way and at the top, pretty strenuous for a Minnesotan and well worth the effort!

Monday, June 26, 2017

great tough climb. my first 14er. definitely not a great one to start with, but totally want to do it again.

Sunday, June 18, 2017

Excellent trail maintenance, beautiful views. Summer conditions with only a few, easily avoidable snow areas. Relatively quiet for a Saturday!

hiking
Saturday, June 17, 2017

this hike is steep steep steep! There's a good mix of terrain that keeps things interesting. I did this hike on a Friday and didn't run into many others. The last mile stretch is by far the toughest due to the elevation gained in a short distance. Ran into a little snow entering the Missouri gulch, but it was packed down and easy to walk around

Monday, May 08, 2017

Pretty trail but we were there 5/6 and there's knee deep snow! Lost the trail a couple of times and the snow started right after we got to the false summit. Be prepared!

hiking
Friday, November 25, 2016

Surprised to see 14er has this one classified at 2, seems more difficult. Creek crossing was completely frozen, make sure to look for the cairn on your left to know where to cross and continue on the trail. Amazing view once you pass the old log cabin. Steep climb, crampons necessary for the sporadic icy spots. Amazing views the whole trip up the prominence, well worth the difficulty.

Sunday, September 04, 2016

This was only my second 14er, but I thought it was much prettier than Elbert. Our group started a little before 5:30 am - we're slow - we were back at the car in 9 hours. We took the steep way up, and the 1 mile extension "loop" back. Like other reviewers, I strongly strongly recommend that route. It's very pretty, will be easier on your knees, and you avoid sliding in loose rock during the steep descent.

hiking
Monday, August 29, 2016

As my first 14er, I was extremely satisfied! Not only simply because I did it, but because of how unique each point of the trail is! We did the steep switch backs in the way up (park ranger said that there are 105 of them) and for the way down we took the gradually descending loop that takes you arrive the valley on the back side of the mountain. Now that does add an extra mile or so taking that route down, but it was so worth it because you avoid doing the same thing twice.

Friday, August 12, 2016

Beautiful hike but can be strenuous at times. Not recommended for beginners. Sights at the top are worth the trek!

hiking
Thursday, July 21, 2016

Gorgeously diverse trail up to a 14er, definitely recommend trying Oxford as well, The views are worth the hike and there are lots of camping spots below the tree-line. You can make it a lot easier on yourself by camping out the night before. Elkhorn Pass is a slightly longer hike down but a lot less steeper way down than the way you came up to Mount Belford and has amazing views with lots of wildflowers, definitely recommended.

hiking
Monday, July 11, 2016

This is tough but worth it. Round trip to summit Belford, 8 miles. Steep going up and tricky coming down. The top was very windy and cold around 10am. Incredible views and wildflowers.

hiking
Monday, June 03, 2013

Had a hard time on this one, but I was completely out of shape. the views were amazing and the experience was overall good. I didn't get to the peak but planning to go back. not going to let it get the best of me.

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