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Brush Lakes Trail No. 1356

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Pike & San Isabel National Forests Cimarron & Comanche National Grasslands
3170 East Main Street
Cañon City, CO 81212
7 miles
6 - 7 hours
Trailhead Elevation:
8600 feet
Elevation Range:
8600 feet to 11700 feet
Elevation Change:
3100 feet
Summer to Fall


The lakes sit below timberline at the base of Thirsty and Lakes Peaks. These lakes are large, relative to the others found in this range.

7 miles
6 - 7 hours
Trailhead Elevation:
Elevation Range:
8600 feet to 11700
Elevation Change:
Summer to Fall
Additional Details:

The areas close to the lakes show signs of heavy use in the past years, current regulations now prohibit camping and stock within 300’ of lakes and 100’ of streams.

These lakes get significant use on weekends and holidays in the summer months.

Beginning elevation (at the trailhead) is 8,600’ the elevation at the lowest Brush Lake is 11,500’.

Fishing success is fair at these lakes.

The Crossover- trail climbs above the uppermost Brush Lake (to the southwest), drops over in to South Branch and eventually gets over to South Brush via Banjo Lake. This route is shown on the San Isabel National Forest Map, and is not a maintained or well defined trail. Skills in backcountry map reading and orienteering are necessary to follow the Crossover-trail.

The Lake Creek campground is on #198, about ¾ miles beyond the turn to the trailhead.

The Lake Creek campground is on #198, about ¾ miles beyond the turn to the trailhead.

Basic Directions

Lake Creek Road # 198, (turn west just outside of the town of Hillside) follow the dirt road for about two miles, turn left at the Forest Service sign for Brush Lakes. The road is very rocky but is negotiable in a 2-wheel drive vehicle. Take this road all the way to the end (that is where the trailhead is and also the Rainbow Trail). Please be aware that you are traveling through private property on this section of road. This is also an access location for the South Brush trail. The lowest lake is about 6 miles from this trailhead. . The trail is easy for hiking, and 8.8 miles long.

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Trinidad Trinidad Trinidad
Known as a heritage town with grand nineteenth-century architecture and brick streets that date to the early 1900s, Trinidad is set in a green valley halfway between Denver and Santa Fe. The town is surrounded by vast state and national recreation areas, including two state parks. Trinidad is the gateway to the Scenic Highway of Legends, where travelers find lakes and stunning dikes that radiate out from the ancient Spanish Peaks. Historic and prehistoric sites abound in every direction.
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