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Copper Mountain Hiking Trails

Wheeler Lakes (5.6 miles/ vertical 1300 ft.)

At the south end of the Gore Range are Wheeler Lakes, which lie inside the Eagles Nest Wilderness. Named for Judge John Wheeler who established an 1880s town that was destroyed by fire and avalanche, Wheeler Lakes offer a great day-hike convenient to I-70. Well over 80 species of wildflowers populate the trail, which journeys through varied habitats and landscape and ends with lakeside bloomers. The beginning of the trail travels adjacent to the freeway, and then the Gore Range Trail heads up a south-facing slope. Wheeler Lakes are reached through traversing extensive meadows preceding a gentler final ascent. Wildflower Alert: A great diversity of flora and scenery give this convenient trail an edge; perfect in early summer, but also lovely in early fall.

 

To get here from Keystone: Take Highway 6 back to I-70- and take I-70 west to the Copper Mt. exit(195). The trailhead is on your right just before you cross the bridge over I-70. There is a small parking area here. However, you need to continue across the bridge and park in the “free skiers” lot at Copper Mountain and then walk the short distance back to the trailhead.

Searle Pass Trail (11.4 miles/ vertical 2400 ft.)

The trail climbs a wide meadow up to timberline, but is never that far from a mixed forest. The trees occasionally come closer to create smaller meadows. The ridge to the east is Jacque Ridge. This is one of those hikes that offers tall, wavy grass in which your pet can roll to his heart’s content. However, if you don’t want to leave the trail to find water, take plenty of it not only for yourself but also for your dog. This area gets hot in the height of summer, better in early summer or fall.

 

To get here from Keystone: Take Highway 6 back to I-70- and take I-70 west to the Copper Mt. exit(195). The trailhead is on your right just before you cross the bridge over I-70. There is a small parking area here. However, you need to continue across the bridge and park in the “free skiers” lot at Copper Mountain and then walk the short distance back to the trailhead.

Mayflower Gulch (2 miles/ vertical minimal)

This short, easy two mile hike leads to the site of Old Boston Mine and some of the most spectacular scenery in the Tenmile range. Hike the road to the right of Mayflower Creek past occasional mining ruins to a clearing just below the mine site. Go left at the fork into the clearing to explore the ruins and the awesome views of the mountains. This is a popular trail for cross country skiers but in the summer season it provides a perfect place for a family picnic and some relaxation.

 

To get here from Keystone: Take Highway 6 back towards Dillon and take I-70 west to the Copper Mountain exit (exit 195). Take route 91 south toward Leadville for 5.8 miles. The parking lot for the Mayflower Gulch trailhead is on your left.

Uneva Pass Trail (9 miles/ vertical 2200 ft.)

The Gore Range is named after the Irish baronet Sir St. George Gore, who hunted in the Rockies between 1854 and 1857 and explored the range of mountains that today bears his name. He reportedly killed 2000 buffalo in nearby Middle Park and hundreds of other animals. Gore Range is famous for its sharp ridges and the solitude its rugged terrain offers. The centerpiece of this area is the Eagles Nest Wilderness, where leash regulations for your dog apply. The Gore Range Trail leads north into the wilderness and the terrain ranges from easy to difficult. You can continue a few miles more to the top of Uneva Peak and this is a great place to bring your dog. Also, you will pass by the Lost Lake on your way to the top. This is also a great area for an overnight hiking trip.

 

To get here from Keystone: The trailhead is tricky to find. Take Highway 6 back towards Dillon and take I-70 west The trailhead is located off the highway just passed the exit 195 on the right hand side of the road. The trail runs close to the highway for about a mile. IT is hard to find, but once you have it you are golden.

23110 US Hwy 6 Unit 6 Keystone, Colorado 80435
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