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

off road driving
2 days ago

Trail closed to motor vehicles so no star would be better

8 days ago

Don’t be fooled by the guide when it tells you you’ve arrived. The only marked trailhead in the parking area is for the Monarch Crest Traill. You’re looking for a trailhead on the other side of US Hwy 50 next to a yellow “steep grade” warning sign.

11 days ago

Summer - Looking for shaded place up in elevation. Perfect trail. Lots of shade and easy inclines. Parking at the trailhead. Ran into a few hikers (weekday) Love hiking a loop. Wish it was a couple miles longer.

horseback riding
20 days ago

This was a great trail to ride horses and dogs, lots of water to play in. A little busy with mountain bikes going super fast but everyone was very good about stopping for our horses. The dirt road is tough and narrow to get to trail head, but there is plenty of places to turn a horse trailer around once there.

Backpacker and stayed two nights. So secluded and quiet! Somewhat strenuous, but nothing too crazy. Can't wait to come back!

Bring lots of water

1 month ago

GPS watch showed about 12 miles out and back from the trailhead. Loved the patches of snow towards the top of the trail! The shade and the beautiful views made it a great hike. It took us 6.5 hours to complete.

1 month ago

My wife and I, daughter and son-in-law and two grand kids 9 and 14 arrived at the gravel road off hwy 50 at about 2:30 pm. There is private property on the right as you enter so be sure to pull into the road past that and park along the side. There were two other cars there when we arrived. Another gravel road off to the right goes up to the trail head for Boss Lake Res. This is kind of a rough unmaintained road which most people go by foot - 1 mile up to trail head, we did too. We only hiked to Boss Lake. Our elevation gain from where we parked our car was close to 1,100 ft. The trail has some segments of steep climb. Weather was cloudy and in the 50"s quite windy at times. Nice hike, out and back was about 4hrs. June 3, 2018

Great running and hiking trail. Maintained extremely well. Drive to the trailhead (4x4 just to be safe but not needed) and save the 2 mile road walk from the reservoir for more hiking on the single track.
Deep snow one mile from the top (late May 2018).
It’s gorgeous in the afternoon

2 months ago

Fairly easy little hike. Mid May very sunny, little shade and a nice breeze. Probably very hot in summer.
We did a loop with Race Track to Dead Bird to Lost. The All Trails map does not show Dead Bird connecting with Lost, but the map at the trailhead shows the connection and trail signage connects the 2.

2 months ago

Flat paved there and back trail. Zero cover so bring water.

3 months ago

Great hike with easy access from Salida. We went up as far as the third bridge today and it was a mix of light snow cover and semi wet. Beyond that snow got a bit heavier and looked like snow shoes would be the way to go. The drive to the trail head is fine. Everyone agreed the hike was beautiful and we'll be back when it opens up further this spring.

7 months ago

nice trail near 14 day camping
party on wayne

8 months ago

Started hiking where we parked next to the snowmobile place up this dirt road that you definitely need high4x4 clearance to get up some of the first curves and rocky parts and we walked the road in the forest until you get to boss lake trailhead and then it’s not too far to boss lake from there. Crazy windy by boss lake and got pretty snowy going up higher to continue on towards hunt lake. Didn’t end up making it to hunt lake because of deep snow. Great views looking back to the valley and around boss lake.

Beautiful fall hike. Most of the leaves had dropped recently which left a carpet of gold on the trail in some places. Parked at the trailhead..my 4x4 truck made it fine. Hiked to the 3rd bridge. Wanted to keep going but I was limited by time. There wasn’t another sole around except for a few mountain bikers on the road.

Beautiful trail with Aspens changing color. If you follow the directions in AllTrails and park off Hwy 50, it is a 3 mile hike to the trailhead. The walk is nice through the forest, but it cut our hike short due to a change in weather shortly after we reached the trailhead. Higher clearance vehicles can be helpful in a few spots along the road off past the dam - plenty of parking at the trailhead.

9 months ago

Wonderful hike with the fall Aspens in bloom. The trail head is a bit further up the forest service road than the marker indicates. The lake was crystal clear and we were the only ones there.

10 months ago

Nice out and back. Be prepared for changing weather.

10 months ago

If you like to hike and have done other hikes in this area, don't do this one. Some good views, but you are right by the hwy for a lot of this hike and hear semi's and cars a lot of the time. Very short, very easy hike (you won't sweat at all). Don't get me wrong, it is pretty, but not secluded and peaceful.

11 months ago

it was awesome. We climbed with our kids, 9 and 7, out of shape Xbox boys.
The forest road leading to the trailhead is rough. We drove a Grand Cherokee 4x4 with suspension I can lift 11 inches and I had to put it in low 4x4 in many places. the road is not too steep but there are many big rocks you need to clear and two sharp switchback. overall 4x4 required but not too difficult if you have one.

thr trail itself is great. well marked and cleared. steep climb at the beginning, then eases up before boss lake. boss lake is beautiful and it was well worth it. it is actually a dam... how did they build it I cannot imagine. very cool. bring a fishing rod, I saw many fish jumping in August.

we continued the climb to Hunt lake l. easy at first and a bit harder later but not bad. We made it half way to the lake but turned around at 3pm out of concerns of having to drive down the road in the dark.

it took us 3 hours to climb and 1.5 hours to desend with the kids. deduct 60 min if you are in good shape.

we started the hike at noon. start earlier and you will make it.

11 months ago

Great short hike. Only made it to boss lake before turning back. Parked near snowmobile shop and hiked up trail to boss lake trailhead then to boss lake. Round trip was a little over 2 hours for an out of shape person like myself. Great views along the way! You can definitely drive up to boss lake trailhead and skip first chunk of hike if you have a 4x4 vehicle and are careful of medium sized rocks driving up there.

Didn't do but a couple miles and then back. Just checking out on my last day in the area. Will be back for more.

Wednesday, July 05, 2017

Great, relatively short trail, definitely on the easier side of moderate (there is a spot where you can climb up to get great views that isn't really part of the trail - that is the most difficult part). The trail starts just west of the Monarch Pass gift/food shop on the other side of Hwy 50. We chose to take the loop clockwise. A steady climb at first but it levels out. Once you get to the old Monarch Pass, you walk east along the road a little bit until the trail picks up again. Views all along were spectacular!

Wednesday, July 05, 2017

Beautiful trail on the easier side of moderate. We parked near the dam because we weren't sure there was room at the trailhead for our long truck. Turns out there was plenty of room - stock SUVs and trucks should have no problem going all the way to the trailhead. Very pretty trail through aspens and pine forest, much of it following the creek.

Tuesday, July 04, 2017

Parked by the snowmobile shop and hiked 1 mile up a steep, rocky road to the Boss Lake trailhead. Hiked the trail to Boss Lake which was beautiful! Didn't make it all the way to Hunt Lake but overall an amazing hike. Only crossed paths with 2 other hikers on the trail and this was on 7/4/17.

Sunday, July 02, 2017

After parking by the snowmobile shop, it's a steep strenuous half mile or so to the boss lake trailhead. Of the two trails visible from the parking area, you take the one on the right, uphill. When the Trail begins to split, stay to the left and cross the stream and the real fun begins!
It's beautiful scenery. The Trail winds and you come to a small pond/lake. (I'm not sure if this is boss lake and hunt lake is the larger one above?.. no one has been able to clarify this.)
You'll hear the water the whole last half of the hike. Hunt lake (I believe) is another half mile or so and it is breathtaking! Windy and cold but so worth it! We found a little shelter among the rocks and had a picnic

Sunday, May 21, 2017

Sure a nice trail. However, we went hiking and could only find our way by following the ski tracks in the snow. It was too early for hiking and too late for skiing. Summer or winter would be our recommendation; unless you want to post hole and guess where you are going. Try this one after the end of May; depending on annual snow load.

Thursday, April 06, 2017

Nice trail for snowshoeing.

on Fooses Creek Trail

Sunday, September 11, 2016

I got a late start and parked my car down by Fooses Reservoir (where many people were fishing). I wish I had brought my pickup to skip over the first 2 miles of road, which was really boring. Another guide book of mine said you needed a lifted 4WD to make it all the way to the trailhead 2 miles up this road, so I didn't bother. However, it seemed like normal trucks and SUV's could make it up okay (with some skill). I wanted to make it to the meadow (about 2 miles in from the trailhead) before turning around, but I turned around after 1 mile when I encountered a moose in a beaver pond, which was a little scary because we couldn't see each other well, and I didn't know if there was a calf nearby. I figured that was a good place to stop, making my hike about 6 miles total. I want to go back and go farther in for sure! Beautiful creek. I can see why this trail is epic for mountain bikers doing the Monarch Crest area. I may go back in a couple weeks during peak colors.

on Hunt Lake Trail

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Bridge at beginning of trail is " out". Actually one horizontal log and its rail remains. I thought of trying to use that, but knew my dog would try to follow me and might fall off the log the 4+ feet from the log to the creek. Walked back to car and got water shoes. Had I known the bridge was out I could have brought water shoes to start with. Just a thought if you are hiking with your dog or small child.
Rest of hike was good. Thunder started at level of Hunt Lake just after noon.

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