Explore the most popular nature trips trails near Jefferson with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

10 days ago

This was a beautiful trail. We did it in two days, but it could easily be stretched to three. The views were fantastic, especially once you get into the alpine parts of the hike. There's a stream that can serves as a water source that stays close to the trail for the first six miles or so. A lot of the last stretch up the mountain is exposed, so expect it to be bright and windy.

I’m sure it’s beautiful but heads up- the road is closed for the season about 3 miles ahead of the trail head. Will definitely be back to check out again! Definitely a seasonal trail! Rookie (like me) be forewarned! That’s the only reason I went with 3 stars

off road driving
4 months ago

From Denver take Lost Park Rd after Kenosha Pass. Take that to Rock Creek Hills trail (FSR 130) which leads all the way to Tarryall Rd. Lost Park and Rock Creek are both very easy dirt roads and would be kind of low on my "fun" list in summertime. However with 6" of snow I had a blast and in any season the trails offer amazing views. There also seemed to be quite a few great campsites so keep that in mind. If you'd like to see a video of the run I have one up at:


07 ranger manual
no lift
no locker
no sway bar

youtube trail channel: b roll offroad

have fun!

7 months ago

Beautiful Hike! Just enough snow to add to the beauty! Winds at Gibson Lake were definitely 50+ miles an hour so we took a few pics and heading back.

Absolutely breathtaking. Very easy hike and great view of the fall color's. Went last weekend but started right before sunrise before the crowd, good thing to because by the time we got back there was more than 100 people when there was only two cars when we started. Highly recommend to keep walking the trail till you get a gorgeous view of the Valley.

off road driving
7 months ago

on French Pass Trail

mountain biking
7 months ago

Great trail...some really steep sections

8 months ago

Quiet, peaceful stroll up to the pass. Camping and animals

10 months ago

A lot of elevation gain, but well worth it for the views. Bring your water or a filter and a lunch for the lake. High clearance vehicle required to get all the way to the parking lot. If you only have a low vehicle, expect 1-2 miles extra just to get to the trailhead (didn't get a read on the exact distance). Great camping along the drive up too. Fishing looked good at the lake. Stream was a bit small.

Easy hike but we did not go all the way to the end either, maybe about a mile or two. It is quite beautiful, full of aspen trees and wild flowers, great for the little ones. A little bit off of the trail there is a surprise waiting for you but I won't ruin the surprise for yo to explore. The trail is also partially shaded for at least the first mile or two. Lots of bikers in the afternoon hours so be prepared to move over a little to let them pass you.

Monday, March 13, 2017

(3.4.17) Only hiked about 6 miles (3 out and back). The trail was snowy and slushy, but not too icy. I was able to hike it in boots alone, but you may want ice cleats. Those first three miles offer some good open views of the valley below.

Great hike 1 hour or so from denver. No one else on the trail and no bikers in the wilderness.

A little snowy in early October, but beautiful none the less! Pretty busy after 10:00, parking was a little tricky, didn't see any bikes though. Overall a great hike, I will do it again!

Stunning fall hike -- exactly what I was hoping for! Went in late September and had phenomenal weather (clear skies, warm enough to wear a short sleeve tshirt at times, a fleece when it got chilly in the shade). We got there around 9am and it was decently crowded with cars and people, but the lower lot (coming from Denver) was completely open. By the time we left the hike, it was packed with traffic! My suggestion is to keep hiking until it completely opens up into panoramic views of everything. Breathtaking.

Monday, September 26, 2016

Do not follow the GPS directions on this app to get you to the trail head. Mine had me east of Jefferson on Rd 77 which is wrong. Drive to Jefferson and go west up road 34 to road 56 towards Georgia Pass. There is great Aspen viewing along this road. (An excellent alternative to crowded Kenosha Pass) Drive past the Michigan Creek campground and look for a large turnout on the left. You'll see trail marker 651 but the trail sign for French Pass is back in the trees so it's not visible from the road. There is a campground across the road. The trail takes you through pine forest and then ascends above timberline to the pass. The surrounding views of Bald Mountain and Black Powder pass are nice. The trail is moderate with a slightly tricky creek crossing but it's a nice hike. We were the only ones on the trail on a beautiful late September day maybe because it's not an optimal trail for fall foliage viewing, however you get a lot of that on the drive up.

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

This trail is not for the faint of heart. It is a 12% grade climb all the way up. The mileage is off a bit, I GPS'ed this at about 3.25 miles 1 way from the trail head. It is a challenge and I do not recommend this if you are out of shape. The road to the trail head requires a high clearance 4WD vehicle. It is very steep, rocky and rough on the last 1.6 miles up to the Trail head via the road with a small parking lot at the trail head. 4-5 cars max. I had a 30 lb pack and it took 2.5 hours up and 1.5 down. Well worth the time and effort to get there. All in all a great trail but definitely not an easy one. Gorgeous backpacking camp sights at high altitude.

Sunday, September 18, 2016

Thoroughly enjoyed hiking French Pass today. Great scenery, mostly moderate in terms of intensity with a few challenging sections. Didn't see any wildlife but loved the trail. Lots of variety in terms of trees, colors and lots of great photo Ops. Really windy at the top.

I feel like this is an easy trail, can be moderate if you go the full length of the trail. Quick access from Denver, beautiful vistas.

Monday, September 12, 2016

We are new to Colorado; only lived here a week, but we consider ourselves in-shape. This trail gave us a small run for our money. Being from Eastern South Dakota we are definitely not used to the elevation. That said we loved this hike. The Gibson Lake and the views that accompany it are amazing. This was a good way to get our feet wet in the elevation game; with a goal of a 14er in the not too distant future. Gibson Lake is at 12,000ft. We parked 1.6 miles down the road from the trailhead to avoid the rough road.

Nice scenery, very forestry with creeks and meadows.

Sunday, July 24, 2016

I've seen varying info on trail length. Sign in lot says 3 miles. Alltrails says 2.2. Somewhere else online mentioned 2.4. My GPS said 2.97. Road was pretty rough but not technical. There was Subaru Outback parked next to us but I'm guessing they scraped a bit.

Hike was fairly steep and rocky. Beautiful views at the top. Next time I'll aim for Whale Peak summit.

Saturday, June 25, 2016

Fantastic hike that allows you to get away from the busy trails close to the city and really experience some true peace! The parking area could fit probably 7 cars comfortably and the trailhead is in the trees off to the left of the parking area, across the road from the campsite. Google maps has the trailhead spot on. It's very easy to navigate throughout the hike. The first 2 miles are a very steady climb with intermittent tree coverage. Once you cross the stream (which was quite difficult as the water was flowing heavily and there wasn't a great place to cross) the last mile and a half is steeper. I clocked about 3.5 up so its more like 7 mi round trip. Saw elk tracks but no wildlife although it's definitely possible. Highly recommended!

on Gibson Lake Trail

Sunday, April 24, 2016

Unbelievable view at the top of the lake! Highly recommend -

Friday, February 12, 2016

Went up twice in 2 weeks. If you're learning to snowshoe this is a great beginner trail. Not too many uphill/downhill's so that you can practice just walking in snowshoes. The trail is a bit difficult to see, you kind of have to judge where it is based on tracks from people before you. With all the Aspens around, I plan to go back during fall to see the colors

Saturday, October 03, 2015

Beautiful day to hike this trail . We parked down the road from the signs for the camping fees so we had quite a long walk round trip. The creeks were running and there were still some leaves on the Aspens. Lovely little lake with fish jumping to snatch insects.

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Love this hike. It's wonderful in the winter and especially pretty in the Fall.

Sunday, August 16, 2015

Pretty hike but I would rate it more moderate than easy. Lots of loose rock makes it a bit challenging. Most of the trail follows a creek up to the top where the lake is.

I didn't do the entire thing, but it was a really nice trail. quite pretty and easy to hike!

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