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Indian Peaks Wilderness

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Local Info

Indian Peaks Wilderness became part of the National Wilderness Preservation System in 1978 and spans 76,711 acres. This wilderness shares borders with James Peak Wilderness to the south and Rocky Mountain National Park to the north. Elevations range from 8,300 to just over 13,500 feet. Indian Peaks is one of the most visited Wilderness areas in the United States. To encounter fewer people, hike and camp on weekdays and use less popular backcountry zones. Trailhead parking is limited. Always use Leave No Trace to help keep this area wild and pristine. For recorded information call 303-541-2519.

Visiting Tips

July & August are the best, but also the busiest months to visit the IPW.

Camping & Lodging

Permits: The Indian Peaks Wilderness is divided into backcountry zones. View a map of Indian Peaks Wilderness & Backcountry Zones (pdf, 274Kb). Permits are issued according to zone and required for camping between June 1 and September 15. Large groups (8 - 12 people) and/or organized groups such as scouts, churches, schools, internet outdoor groups and hiking clubs require permits year-round for day and overnight trips.

Permits are limited and must be obtained in advance from recreation.gov. Please read more information about Indian Peaks Wilderness guidelines, restrictions, and how to obtain a permit.

Camping: Click here for a list of Boulder Ranger District Campgrounds.

Gems in Indian Peaks Wilderness - 3

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gem Favorite Lone Eagle Peak reflected in unnamed small pond

Crater Lake and Lone Eagle Peak

(25) Granby, CO
gem Favorite View of Long Lake while taking the southern route to Lake Isabelle.

Long Lake

(11) Nederland, CO
gem Favorite Isabelle Lake surrounded by the Indian Peaks - stunning.

Lake Isabelle

(3) Nederland, CO

Recommended Routes in Indian Peaks Wilderness - 5

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Favorite Indian Paintbrush and buttercup.
Difficult Difficult

South Arapaho Peak

8.6 mi 13.8 km 3,111' Up 948.19 m Up 3,110' Down 947.87 m Down

Nederland, CO
Explore in 3D
Favorite View South along Irving Hale Pass. Background Mountains surround Mirror and Crater Lakes
Very Difficult Very Difficult

Hell Canyon Loop

18.8 mi 30.3 km 4,290' Up 1307.64 m Up 4,289' Down 1307.23 m Down

Grand Lake, CO
Explore in 3D
Favorite Indian Paintbrush and buttercup.
Intermediate Intermediate

Diamond Lake

5.4 mi 8.6 km 1,100' Up 335.27 m Up 1,101' Down 335.66 m Down

Nederland, CO
Explore in 3D
Favorite Creek along the Columbine Lake Trail, July 29, 2019.
Intermediate Intermediate

Columbine Lake Out-and-Back

6.4 mi 10.3 km 978' Up 298 m Up 978' Down 297.96 m Down

Fraser, CO
Explore in 3D
Favorite Flowery meadows on a rainy day.
Intermediate/Difficult Intermediate/Difficult

Junco Lake Loop

22.2 mi 35.8 km 4,972' Up 1515.48 m Up 4,962' Down 1512.53 m Down

Fraser, CO
Explore in 3D

Indian Peaks Wilderness Running

  • 80 Miles 129 Kilometers of Trail
  • 5 Recommended Routes
  • 3 Gems Gems
  • 0 Easy Trails Easy Trails
  • 13 Intermediate Trails Intermediate Trails
  • 11 Difficult Trails Difficult Trails
Trail Run Project is built by runners like you. Share what you know about this area!

Weather Averages


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Trails in Indian Peaks Wilderness - 19

Trail Run Project is built by runners like you. Add Your Trails

3.6 mi 5.9 km #1Diamond Lake Trail
Intermediate Intermediate
Nederland, CO
Intermediate Intermediate
Nederland, CO 21 
13.1 mi 21.1 km #2Arapaho Pass Trail
Intermediate/Difficult Intermediate/Difficult
Nederland, CO
Intermediate/Difficult Intermediate/Difficult
Nederland, CO 19 
4.2 mi 6.8 km #3Caribou Pass Trail #11
Intermediate/Difficult Intermediate/Difficult
Fraser, CO
Intermediate/Difficult Intermediate/Difficult
Fraser, CO
12.1 mi 19.5 km #4High Lonesome Trail
Intermediate/Difficult Intermediate/Difficult
Fraser, CO
Intermediate/Difficult Intermediate/Difficult
Fraser, CO
1.1 mi 1.8 km #5Crater Lake Trail
Intermediate Intermediate
Granby, CO
Intermediate Intermediate
Granby, CO
1.0 mi 1.7 km #6Airplane Gully Route
Difficult Difficult
Nederland, CO
Difficult Difficult
Nederland, CO
2.5 mi 4.0 km #7Woodland Lake Trail
Intermediate/Difficult Intermediate/Difficult
Nederland, CO
Intermediate/Difficult Intermediate/Difficult
Nederland, CO
0.5 mi 0.7 km #8South Arapaho Peak Southeast Ridge
Difficult Difficult
Nederland, CO
Difficult Difficult
Nederland, CO
12.6 mi 20.3 km #9CDT: Monarch Lake to Grand Lake (CO Sec. 35)
Intermediate Intermediate
Grand Lake, CO
Intermediate Intermediate
Grand Lake, CO
3.1 mi 5.0 km #10Saint Vrain Glacier Trail
Intermediate/Difficult Intermediate/Difficult
Nederland, CO
Intermediate/Difficult Intermediate/Difficult
Nederland, CO

Photos of Indian Peaks Wilderness - 270

Trail Run Project is built by runners like you. Add Your Photos

Lone Eagle Peak above Mirror - from the Crater Lake Trail
Apr 14, 2015 near Granby, CO
Lone Eagle Peak reflected in unnamed small pond
Apr 14, 2015 near Granby, CO
Indian Paintbrush and buttercup.
Oct 23, 2016 near Nederland, CO
Isabelle Lake surrounded by the Indian Peaks - stunning.
Nov 7, 2016 near Nederland, CO
Flowery meadows on a rainy day.
Aug 1, 2017 near Nederland, CO
Climbing Buchanan Pass on the west side.
Jul 9, 2018 near Nederland, CO
Crater Lake and Mt Achonee (12,649')
Aug 14, 2018 near Granby, CO
View South along Irving Hale Pass. Background Mountains surround Mirror and Crater Lakes
Oct 11, 2018 near Grand Lake, CO
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