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Meridian Trail

Basics
Location:
Southwest of Denver
Setting:
Mountainous
Length:
6.6 mile roundtrip
Difficulty:
Intermediate
Time:
3 to 4 hours
Trailhead Elevation:
9100 feet
Elevation Change:
-1650 feet
Season:
Fall

Description

This pleasant hike leads to a saddle, which marks the boundary between Pike and Arapahoe National Forests, as well as the boundary of the Mount Evans Wilderness. The trail remains below treeline the entire distance, and it is well maintained and easy to follow. There are possible sites for overnight camping at the saddle, however water is not available in the immediate area so campers will need to supply their own. Southerly exposure makes this a good early or late season hike, and fall colors can be beautiful along this trail. The trail is almost entirely outside of the Mount Evans Wilderness, but does enter the Wilderness at the top and Wilderness regulations apply.

The trail leads north as it rises out of the Elk Creek drainage, then begins to bear in a northeasterly direction. This portion of the trail passes through several aspen groves, and offers some interesting vistas looking east and south. The saddle is marked by Wilderness boundary signs. Just beyond the saddle, the trail ends at its intersection with the Cub Creek Trail. Note that the revised 1974 quad map has the designation "Meridian Campground" at the saddle. This is not a designated Forest Service campground, and there are no water or sanitary facilities at the saddle. (The developed Meridian Campground is south of the Meridian Trailhead.)

Details

Location:
Southwest of Denver
Setting:
Mountainous
Length:
6.6 mile roundtrip
Difficulty:
Intermediate
Time:
3 to 4 hours
Trailhead Elevation:
9100
Elevation Change:
-1650
Season:
Fall
Useful Map(s):
USGS Quads: Harris Park

Map + Directions

Basic Directions

Drive west from Denver on US 285 approximately 28 miles to the traffic light before the top of Crow Hill. Turn right (northwest) on to Park County 43 and drive in a northwesterly direction for 6.8 miles to a "Y" in the road. Bear right. Go 1.5 miles, passing Meridian Campground on the left. Take the next left and turn left on Prospector Way. Go .8 miles past Camp Rosalie to the trailhead. The last mile is rough and can be muddy.


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