Recommendations for Colorado Backpack?

Janice

Member
.
Joined
Dec 5, 2017
Messages
1,041
Our group of 4 was originally planning to backpack the Elk Park-Needleton loop in the Weminuche Wilderness for 5-6 days starting at the end of June. Unfortunately, though, this won't be possible, as the wildfire near Durango has closed the San Juan Forest and we need to choose a different trip. We know people love Maroon Bells, but since this will be the week leading up to July 4 I'm assuming that will be super crowded. Am I assuming correctly? If so, what about Lost Creek Wilderness? Or others??? At this point, I don't think we can get permits for campsites along the CDT loop in RMNP. This is our one backpacking trip for the summer, so we're hoping for beautiful scenery, perhaps 30-35 miles over 5 days or 6 days max. Any recommendations will be greatly appreciated!
 
LCW is nice but (relatively speaking for CO) doesn't really deliver on the views imo.

Rawah Wilderness is worth checking out. Lots of lakes, alpine vistas, large animals.
 
Thanks so much for your reply. Is there a particular route that you like that we should consider?
 
Thanks so much for your reply. Is there a particular route that you like that we should consider?

You could spend a night each at Island lake, Twin Crater lakes, one of the numbered Rawah lakes, and one of the Camp lakes. That would loop you in/out of the west branch trailhead, but there are a lot of options in there if you check out a map. I have a trip report on here from last fall you can check out. Great place. Lots of moose. It’s on my list of places to return to.
 
I'm checking out the Rawah map and see most of those lakes. Looks great - thanks for the recommendation!
 
Go into the Big Blue in the Uncompahgre WIlderness.
Thanks for the suggestion. Am checking out trails. If you have a specific route that you recommend, I'd love to hear it. Do you think this is too close to the 416 fire?
 
Our group of 4 was originally planning to backpack the Elk Park-Needleton loop in the Weminuche Wilderness for 5-6 days starting at the end of June. Unfortunately, though, this won't be possible, as the wildfire near Durango has closed the San Juan Forest and we need to choose a different trip. We know people love Maroon Bells, but since this will be the week leading up to July 4 I'm assuming that will be super crowded. Am I assuming correctly?

The Four Pass Loop is usually pretty crowded, and with the closure of most of the Weminuche, I've heard a lot of people who were planning on going there are now looking at the Four Pass Loop, so I bet it will be even busier than normal. I can't wait for the Forest Service to implement a permit system next year, because then maybe I'll finally go back!
 
I had a feeling that would be the case. Thanks for your reply!
 
After some thought, the Uncompahgre might be very smoky. Have you considered going north, like up into the Winds?
 
Wind Rivers in Wyoming
Thanks - I appreciate your replies. We're interested in that, but our friends are flying into Albuquerque (which was pretty convenient for Weminuche, right?) and might not be willing to drive that far.
 
Have you looked into creating a loop in the Collegiate Peaks Wilderness along the CDT/Colorado Trail?
 
Have you looked into creating a loop in the Collegiate Peaks Wilderness along the CDT/Colorado Trail?
Will look into it. Again, if you have a recommendation for specific trails, perhaps 30 miles (give or take), that would be great!
 
Couple of other suggestions...circumnavigation loop around Capitol and Snowmass peaks, starting at Capitol Creek trailhead west of Aspen. This loop utilizes part of the same trail as the Four Pass loop. Another might be a loop around Mount of the Holy Cross starting at Halfmoon campground, southwest of Vail. Full disclosure, I've not done either of these routes but they look enticing.
 
Couple of other suggestions...circumnavigation loop around Capitol and Snowmass peaks, starting at Capitol Creek trailhead west of Aspen. This loop utilizes part of the same trail as the Four Pass loop. Another might be a loop around Mount of the Holy Cross starting at Halfmoon campground, southwest of Vail. Full disclosure, I've not done either of these routes but they look enticing.
Thanks so much - I noticed Capitol Creek online but the route I saw showed 40 miles and I don't think we have enough time for that. I'll look further and see if there's a shorter way we can do that. I'll check out the other one as well.
 
Similar threads
Thread starter Title Forum Replies Date
B March at Valley of Fire other recommendations in the area Trip Planning 7
D San Rafael Swell Recommendations Trip Planning 9
F Looking for tent recommendations Gear 20
R Pony Express Trail Hiking Recommendations Trip Planning 4
RyanP Snowy Range (WY) easy backpacking recommendations? Trip Planning 4
The Trout Whisperer HELP w/ lightweight chair recommendations!!!!! Gear 3
D Recommendations in the Gros Ventre and Washakie Wilderness Areas Trip Planning 10
U Any recommendations for 5 days hiking in Wyoming, Idaho or MT? This is around July 15-20. Not counting on Glacier being open Trip Planning 9
J East Coast to Unitas Trip Recommendations Trip Planning 4
seekinglost Recommendations for a company that does custom gear mods? Which fabrics/materials? Gear 11
fossana Tucson area trails/site recommendations Trip Planning 7
D Western Mountaineering sleeping bag recommendations plz General Discussion 5
A Recommendations for early July? Trip Planning 0
Miya Personal Locator Beacon Recommendations? Gear 84
Shirt357 Camera recommendations Gear 3
Kootenai Red Castle recommendations? Trip Planning 1
Yvonne Hiking Shoe Recommendations Gear 7
C Recommendations for 4 day Backpacking in Southern Utah with dogs please... Trip Planning 1
WasatchWill Family/Kid friendly recommendations for Joshua Tree NP Trip Planning 4
M Capitol Reef backcountry recommendations? Trip Planning 9
Dirkules Good multi-day hike "Island in the Sky" - your recommendations?! Trip Planning 2
Bob Wire Binocular recommendations General Discussion 1
N Trip Recommendations- Grand Staircase Escalante Area 7 days Trip Planning 11
605troutbum Down Jacket Recommendations Gear 21
S Need recommendations for Uintas this weekend Trip Planning 2
astark15 Late spring backpacking recommendations? Noobs: Introduce yourself! 7
D Book Recommendations General Discussion 27
M Coyote Gulch next week and footwear recommendations? Trip Planning 1
BJett DSLR's...recommendations... Photography 12
C August Uintas - Recommendations Trip Planning 8
K Recommendations for sleeping bags/pads on a college student budget? Gear 15
Yvonne Uintas recommendations needed Trip Planning 57
J escalante/death hollow recommendations?? Trip Planning 7
D Access Recommendations to Cottonwood Cove , South Coyote Buttes Trip Planning 3
HomerJ Site recommendations... Questions, Suggestions & Support 4
Nick Wind River Backpacking Recommendations Trip Planning 25
leatherman Uinta backpacking recommendations Trip Planning 4
Mikjik86 Hiking Colorado - 13er Bald Mountain 13,703' Hiking & Camping 2
M Mee/Knowles Canyon Loop, Grand Junction Colorado Backpacking 4
westy San Juan mountains, Colorado Hiking & Camping 8
westy Colorado Plateau spring Hiking & Camping 0
J Castle/Conundrum/Hot Springs Trip - Colorado Trip Planning 5
gnwatts Butt cold on the Colorado On The Water 11
travel2walk last minute Colorado trip, maybe 4 passes? Meet Up (Members Only) 0
dpnoll Colorado Canyonlands Backpacking 10
napatony13 1100 Miles, 43 Days, Summits All 58 14ers in Colorado General Discussion 4
futurafree Green vs. Colorado Rivers above confluence Trip Planning 5
futurafree Colorado off-trail ideas? Trip Planning 8
Harrison1991 Colorado climbing Meet Up (Members Only) 2
J Scrambles in the Lower Colorado River Corridor AZ/NV; Dec. 11-14, 2020 Hiking & Camping 5

Similar threads

Back
Top