St. Elmo to Tincup OHV Route

MODERATE 35 reviews
#21 of 96 trails in

St. Elmo to Tincup OHV Route is a 12.1 mile lightly trafficked point-to-point trail located near Nathrop, Colorado that features a lake and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for off road driving and is best used from June until October.

Distance: 12.1 miles Elevation Gain: 2,155 feet Route Type: Point to Point

ohv / off road driving

forest

lake

river

views

wildlife

This is an off-road driving route. This is not a hiking or biking trail. Note: The pass may be closed until late summer when snowfall has melted

ohv/off road driving
rocky
2 months ago

First off the recorded map is misleading. We started and ended at St. Elmo’s trail head. The actual mileage is closer to 45 miles. We went up through the Hancock pass then to Tin Cup ending at St. Elmo’s. This loop isn’t to difficult the trails are very rocky but passable. The vistas are amazing especially from 12,000 foot passes. You pass numerous old mines and there out buildings.

ohv/off road driving
rocky
3 months ago

hiking
washed out
3 months ago

hiking
3 months ago

we went two weeks ago it was great made it all the way two Rangers three four wheeler one was a two wheel drive 90 driven by 10 year old granddaughter and my eight-year-old grandson all Polaris camping by Mirror Lake was great

rocky
snow
4 months ago

We started out early in the morning expecting to turn around at the pass due to snow blocking the pass. When we got there we were able to take our Rubicon (4” lift and 33” tires) thru the pass with inches to spare between snow and drop off. Ride is rocky and very rough. Scenery is beautiful. Made it down to mirror lake and met the driver of an ATV that passed us earlier. The path around lake is under water and he told us he had to turn around when the ATV started floating and that we could not make it. So we thought let’s try it and turn back if we decide it’s too deep. Main reason is because we were almost at the end and did not want to turnaround and go back over the rocky trail home. So we started out over the first water passage. Most of the first water passage was 2’ deep, but hit s 3’ spot by the creek entry (where ATV floated). We made it to the dry middle part and we discussed going on. The next section was longer and we were not sure we could make it. I walked the bank and looked at the depths and decide to try it since the bottom is rock. Multiple people watched from the other side parking lot and we set off. We kept the jeep close to the bank and set off. Very nervous about last water leg since we were traveling solo and didn’t have any support vehicle. Water about 33” deep (top of tires). Made it thru and down to Tin Cup where they told us the route was closed. Had to show them my recording in AllTrails before they would believe us. I guess St Elmo to Tin Cup is officially open. Only second real off road trip I have made and I guess and am hooked. I was fortunate that my brother-in-law did most of the driving and his Rubicon is very well set up and maintained. Note: route is not ready for ATV or Razor as water is too deep. Gave it 5 Stars since I am a newbie and was blown away. Sorry for such a long review...

ohv/off road driving
closed
rocky
4 months ago

Really nice trip, but we were just a few days too early to make it all the way across. Rocky and bumpy, but was a good start to our week in the mountains. St. Elmo is a nice stop before you head up. We will come later in the summer next time to hopefully make it on over.

ohv/off road driving
4 months ago

Drove up from St. Elmo in my Hummer H2. No problems, had a great time. Currently as of 7-20-19 the pass is till closed. I had to turn around. Not big deal was a blast. Be sure to stop and see where the avalanche was. It will really show you the damage an avalanche can do.

ohv/off road driving
Sat Sep 29 2018

Drove up from St Elmo to the summit, beautiful drive, not to tough, did it in Chevy 2500 and had plenty of clearance, took the advice from the guys coming up from Tincup and went back the way I came

ohv/off road driving
Tue Sep 04 2018

Great utv trail with awesome views and lots of great camping spots. Very rocky but not too difficult, just have to take it slow in some spots. A little crowded towards the top of the pass where the path is not quite wide enough for 2 vehicles. I brought my parents here over labor day weekend and they very much enjoyed it, the fall colors were starting early and made for great views.

Sat Aug 25 2018

Amazing day with friends. This is a must do utv ride. Tin Cup is a great town with friendly people. I hope they never change and visitors respect the town. Already planning another trip!

ohv/off road driving
Sun Aug 19 2018

Did this August 5, 2018 in a jeep wrangler. summit trail was open but VERY tight, and a hell of a bumpy ride! I would not suggest climbing to the summit if this is your first go but there is a parking area at the bottom of the trail to the summit with pathways to climb on foot. The path down the other side is all rocks and you MUST be in a 4x4. Ran into a few stranded folks who didn't take that advice. camping sites along the whole way and a great trip to enjoy the view!

Sat Aug 11 2018

If anyone is headed Up Iron Chest Rd, please be on the lookout for a dog that was involved in a Jeep accident (fatality about 3 miles up) this week. He is a young golden doodle named Bentley. He jumped out as the Jeep rolled down 600 ft. The family lives out of state and need help locating him. Please don’t chase him, or whistle etc. Let him come to you . Offer food etc.. Call Teema w any sightings. 316 304 1055. If the general Store is familiar w the story.. There is a reward... I will take the post down when found. Thank You!!!

ohv/off road driving
Mon Aug 06 2018

Did this in a stock 16 4runner trail. Stock Dunlop tires aired down to 25psi. Was pretty easy no real concerns. Hardest part was coming down the tin cup side of the pass gets really rocky. Also sometimes you have to wait for a cow to cross the road.

Fri Jun 29 2018

as of 6/6/18 snow is still blocking trail at summit. easy trail with lots of good camping spots along the way.

Sun May 06 2018

As of Cinco De Mayo 2018, the trail is still closed due to snow- for up to date information, you can send message via Facebook; look up St Elmo General Store.

ohv/off road driving
Mon Oct 02 2017

trail is easy, maybe (2) S-M obstacles, but bumpy. since its a pass, obviously the views are amazing. if you'd like to see a video of the pass i have one here, but the second half is half of coney flats trail: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zHuTfvpeSBU&index=4&list=UUOwWBeGU3w1bW52fFA_O6BQ 07 ranger manual 33" 13psi bilsteins no lift no locker no sway bar youtube trail channel: b roll offroad have fun!

ohv/off road driving
Wed Aug 09 2017

This pass was amazing. I had a hard time gauging whether or not this would be a good novice trail. Going up from St. Elmo in a stock 05 4runner it did excellent. I do have general grabber at2s on it. There were quite a few burms that clearance was concerning but it cleared fine. Had a couple rocks that I could have navigated more seamlessly. Scrapped once. Regardless I would have felt more comfortable with additional clearance. Drop offs don't mess around up top but the scenery is worth it! Coming down into mirror lake the pass is more rough. This took my buddy getting out and spotting. We slowly decended into mirror lake. The drive took around 3 hours total, half of which we did at night. Coming into the camp ground we had a snowy owl land on the trail, super special! Amazing to see. Stayed two nights at the campground. Clean outhouse and great sites. The lake is amazing, clearest water I've seen in Colorado, literally can see the fish. Let's keep it that way

ohv/off road driving
Sat Aug 05 2017

Went from St Elmo to Tincup. Spend a little time in St. Elmo and look around, they have a general store, antique store, small hotel and cabin. The trail starts at heading north out of St Elmo, a left over a bridge. Definitely, air down your tires as this is a very bumpy ride over rocks. Lots places to camp with gorgeous views. The road is wide enough to be fairly easy to pass oncoming traffic. About six miles in the trail will come out to high plains and you will see the switchback road that leads to the summit, the trail narrows a bit here so keep your eye out for oncoming traffic.....but there are still plenty of areas to pass by. You reach the summit with plenty of area for parking. Tincup pass is located on the continental divide.....take some pictures at the sign! After leaving Tincup pass the trail becomes even more rocky and is moderate trail, a spotter is suggested for a few areas. In our opinion this is the hardest part of the trail. The trail winds down to Mirror lake. Mirror lake is one of the top 10 rated lakes in Colorado.....plan to have a picnic and enjoy the lake for awhile. There is Mirror Lake campground with bathrooms on site. We unfortunately found there to be hungry mosquitoes all through this area...wish we had known! We saw many fishing and all stated they were having a great day fishing and catching many on the north side. We were told that the trail from Mirror Lake to Tincup was treacherous and rocky but we found that the state of Colorado leveled out this road and it is now easy typical dirt road. Tincup has a general store and a restaurant.....we found it to be very busy for a ghost town, definitely busier than St. Elmo. Ps- Eight miles north out of Tincup is gas station by Taylor lake to air up your tires. Happy trails!

ohv/off road driving
Thu Aug 03 2017

Very beautiful, saw a bull moose, Mirror Lake is absolutely gorgeous.

ohv/off road driving
Mon Sep 19 2016

Went up during the changing of the seasons. Very busy! Beautiful going to the pass. Gets a little bumpy on the way to mirror lake. Lots of atv activity. Well worth it!

ohv/off road driving
Fri Jul 17 2015

Jeeped the trail in 2009. Rough riding but the pass was beautiful. Did a three mile hike up one side of the pass. Full of rocks and boulders. Played like a kid.

ohv/off road driving
Thu Jul 18 2013

Great trail on a Polaris RZR 900 XP. Beautiful views and fun times. My 14 year old daughter drove all the way. Easy peasy.

ohv/off road driving
Fri Jul 13 2012

Fun trail mostly easy with some moderate sections. Views at the top are amazing. I've taken a Dodge Dakota and this year a Jeep Wrangler Unlimited stock over this pass. Lots of trails and camping on the St. Elmo side as well.

scenic driving
Tue Jun 26 2012

I drove my 4WD Ford F-150 up this road on a beautiful summer day in June. The road was much better than I anticipated. If the weather hadn't have been so perfect I would not have taken this road as bad weather could easily turn this road difficult in a hurry. After reaching the pass, I hiked up to the top of the mountain directly to the east (13,230') and got some amazing views. Well worth the trip!

ohv/off road driving
Mon Apr 23 2012

Awesome ATV trail. I recommend NOT taking a regular passenger 4WD or AWD up here and definitely not a regular passenger vehicle. I only say this as I have seen people and get into trouble. I just shake my head. If you don't own one, rent an ATV or modified Jeep. I've done it couple of times so I won't mark the activity date.

ohv/off road driving
Wed Dec 08 2010

Great drive, very scenic, either Tin Cup or St. Elmo are destinations in themselves. I drove from Tin Cup to St. Elmo. Road not bad for 4WD, slow going because of rock.

hiking
1 month ago

hiking
2 months ago

Load More