Staunton SP

Staunton SP

Monday, July 30, 2007

Rattlesnake Gulch Trail, Eldorado Canyon State Park


Rattlesnake Gulch Trail
Eldorado Canyon State Park

Date Hiked: July 3, 2007

Distance: 2.4 mi (RT)
Elevation Gain: 1,033ft
Managing Agency: Colorado State Parks
Fee: Yes

Eldorado Canyon State Park Trail Map (CO Division of Wildlife)

Directions:  From Denver take I-70 West to Hwy 58 West.  Turn north on Hwy 93 and just before you reach South Boulder, turn left (west) on Eldorado Springs Drive.  Go through the town of Eldorado Springs and enter the State Park.  Follow the park's road to the Fowler/Rattlesnake Gulch Trailhead.

This hike is the premier hike in the Park, unfortunately, due to the 2013 floods, the trail has been largely washed away.  It is closed until they rebuild it, if they rebuild it...

The trail switchbacks up the easter slopes to the Continental Divide Overlook and the ruins of an old Hotel.  From here you get an amazing view down the canyon to Shirttail Peak and Eldorado Mountain.  The view is simply amazing, the rock formations forming the entrance to the canyon are iconic, and you get a glorious view of them from the entire trail.  The trail gains over 1,000 feet but the grade is steady making this a great moderate hike and the best way to experience Eldorado Canyon.

Friday, July 27, 2007

Lilly Pad Lake, Eagles Nest Wilderness

Lilly Pad Lake, Eagles Nest Wilderness
White River National Forest

Date Hiked: July 27, 2007
  • Distance:  2.8 mi (RT)
  • Elevation Gain: 125ft
  • Elevation Min/Max: 9,825 to 9,952
  • Managing Agency: U.S. Forest Service
  • Fee: No
Lilly Pad Lake Trail Website (USFS)

Directions:  From Dillon/Silverthorne, head north on Hwy 9 to the 1st traffic light and make a left onto Wildernest Road.  Follow this to the end of the road and the parking area with the Lilly Lake Trailhead.

Lilly Pad Lake is a short hike close to the towns of Dillon, Silverthorne, and Frisco at the southern tip of the Gore Mountain Range.  This is a great hike for kids as it is short with not much elevation gain.  The trail mostly travels through aspen and lodgepole pine forest with various viewpoints looking back to Lake Dillon.  There are a number of creek crossings along the way as well.  The lake is a pleasant spot to relax and take in the view of Buffalo Peak looming over the trees.  The hike just enters the Eagles Nest Wilderness and provides access to longer hikes that go deeper into the wilderness area.  The trail is very popular so arrive early to snag a parking spot.