West Maroon Bells Pass

HARD 12 reviews

West Maroon Bells Pass is a 8 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Elkton, Colorado that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as difficult. The trail is primarily used for hiking and is best used from June until October.

DISTANCE
8.0 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
2145 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

hiking

forest

views

wild flowers

snow

This version of the hike up to West Maroon Bells Pass is for those starting and finishing on the Crested Butte side of the pass. A 12-mile drive from Crested Butte Mountain Resort on CR 317 through Gothic, CO and on to the trailhead (will be on the right side of CR 317). A low-grade incline will take you up to the West Maroon Bells Pass for incredible views out and back.

hiking
2 months ago

2 months ago

hiking
2 months ago

Just got back from this! Surprisingly enough, this was the first trail I ever truly hiked. I am very new to hiking and my group set out to attempt the entire Four Pass Loop in the Maroon Bells, but quickly realized as beginners to hiking (and as Detroiters who are not accustomed to elevation) that to complete all four passes was too difficult. Instead, we decided to complete this trail. The trail is mostly up hill and the terrain is very rocky. There are a few streams to pass but since it is September, they were low and manageable. I would rank this as a hard trail - but it is SO rewarding. Loads of wildlife - we saw many Pikas and Marmots. I plan on tackling the whole Four Pass Loop after training long and hard but this trail was an amazing introduction to hiking!!

hiking
4 months ago

hiking
4 months ago

Did this hike 2 days ago. Beautiful hike. There was 2 high-ish water crossings, but not that difficult. Lot and lots of mud on the Aspen side. CB side only had a few small mud patches. Once we got to the pass and saw the views and all the wildflowers the rain and mud were a distant memory. Definitely worth the hike.

4 months ago

This was an amazing hike. The meadows of wildflowers are the best I've ever seen. The view from the pass is absolutely breathtaking. We hiked with two teenagers from CB to Aspen. The .5 up the pass and the .5 down the pass was nerve racking with children. Harder than I expected but well worth it. I would recommend poles. Lots of mudd and very rocky on the Aspen side.

hiking
4 months ago

I was lucky enough to do this hike on an absolutely beautiful day (7/30) - cool air, breezy, mostly sunny with a few clouds. I honestly can't imagine there being anything more beautiful in the world. The wildflowers just COVERED the fields leading up to Maroon Pass, and you're just surrounded by mountains on all sides. The entire length of the hike was as picturesque as it gets. Most of the hike was fairly easy, with the last mile (especially the last half mile) being pretty strenuous. But the views from Maroon Pass are totally worth the struggle.

Be aware before you set out - As of late July, there was still some snow on CR 317 (Gothic Road), so the road was closed about 3 miles short of the trailhead, just about .4 miles past Gothic Campground. This added about 3 miles to each end of my hike, making it about 14 miles total RT. This included walking up and over Schofield Pass each way. Silver lining - getting to walk by Emerald Lake, thus having more time to take in its beauty.

hiking
4 months ago

hiking
4 months ago

4 months ago

hiking
5 months ago

Gorgeous hike through Maroon Bells wilderness area our and back starting from the Crested Butte side as opposed to the Aspen side. Definitely good idea to have a 4x4 vehicle for the dirt road portion of CR 317 to get to the trailhead. The incline is very low, manageable, and steady through the foothills approaching Bellview mountain in an open valley with gorgeous wildflowers and streams to cross. As you gradually get higher the views get better and better. Switchbacks up through the rocks will take you the last bit up to the pass for spectacular 360 views. We did it on a wet day after it had rained a lot in the early morning but everything was very doable and worth the trek. We passed a few groups here and there but not too busy. Awesome hike!!!

hiking
Saturday, August 03, 2013