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Elk Creek Trail

Basics
Location:
North of Durango
Setting:
Mountainous
Length:
17.8 mile roundtrip
Difficulty:
Difficult
Time:
10 to 11 hours
Trailhead Elevation:
8300 feet
Elevation Change:
4500 feet
Season:
Summer - Fall

Description

One of the biggest drawing points of this trail is the unique opportunity to combine a Wilderness trip with a ride on a steam locomotive. This same attraction can also affect other aspects of your wilderness experience, by decreasing overall solitude with increased visitation. Elk Creek drains the northern portion of the Grenadier Range, which includes Arrow, Vestal, and the Trinity Peaks; a mecca for mountaineers. These features, along with access to the Continental Divide Trail, make Elk Creek one of the most heavily used trails in the Weminuche Wilderness. Remember to filter water and practice low-impact camping.

Elk Creek is rated good for rainbow and brook trout in the lower section of the creek. Please check the fishing regulations regarding limits, allowable lures, and restrictions on certain lakes, rivers, etc.

Details

Location:
North of Durango
Setting:
Mountainous
Length:
17.8 mile roundtrip
Difficulty:
Difficult
Time:
10 to 11 hours
Trailhead Elevation:
8300
Elevation Change:
4500
Season:
Summer - Fall
Useful Map(s):
USGS Quad: Storm King

Map + Directions

Basic Directions

1)Via Molas Trail from U.S. Hwy. 550, 42 miles north of Durango, off the top of Molas Pass toward Silverton. Turn east (R) at Molas Lake. Hike 5 miles down Molas Trail to Elk Park.

2)By narrow-gauge railroad, to “Elk Park.”

3)Continental Divide Trail


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