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South Boulder Creek Trail

Intermediate/Difficult

Trail

5.0 mile 8.0 kilometer point to point
75% Runnable
Intermediate/Difficult

Elevation

Ascent: 2,762' 842 m
Descent: -78' -24 m
High: 11,896' 3,626 m
Low: 9,211' 2,807 m

Grade

Avg Grade: 11% (6°)
Max Grade: 41% (22°)

Dogs

Leashed
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Map Key

A relatively quiet trail, South Boulder Creek is an epic journey to the CDT.

Tom Robson

Features River/Creek · Wildlife

Campfires are note allowed. Permits are not required for overnight stays inside the James Peak Wilderness. However, other wilderness regulations apply. Access to the East Portal TH is available year round.

Runner Notes

The first 3.5 miles of this trail a very runnable, just watch out for errant roots. After that distance, there are two insanely steep pitches better suited to fast walking than running.

Description

From the northwest corner of the parking area, continue for 1.2 miles on the South Boulder Creek Trail #900 to the signed Forest Lakes Trail junction. Continue straight on the South Boulder Creek Trail. The Crater Lakes Trail turns right (north) off the South Boulder Creek Trail at the junction sign. Again, continue straight on the South Boulder Creek Trail.

The trail leaves the creek for a time then returns, climbs, and crosses the South Boulder Creek at several points before leveling off near Rogers Pass Lake. An obvious path leads beyond this lake to a saddle. From here, both Rogers Pass Lake and Heart Lake are visible. The South Boulder Creek Trail climbs steeply up several switchbacks to Rogers Pass. Adventurous runners can turn south for a climb up James Peak or north, along the Continental Divide Trail to Rollins Pass.

From Rollins Pass, runners can loop back to East Portal Trailhead by continuing easterly along the road and traversing the blocked Needles Eye Tunnel. Once over the tunnel and back onto the road, travel south to the upper Forest Lakes Trailhead. The Forest Lakes Trail connects back to the East Portal Trailhead.

Flora & Fauna

You're likely to see a moose here.

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Check-Ins

Aug 17, 2019
Graeme Dunn
Jul 8, 2018
Bryce Kerscher
10.8mi
Jul 5, 2018
Michael Reschly
Sep 10, 2017
Kelly Tuomala
10mi

Trail Ratings

  4.3 from 8 votes

#6051

Overall
  4.3 from 8 votes
5 Star
38%
4 Star
50%
3 Star
13%
2 Star
0%
1 Star
0%
Trail Rankings

#485

in Colorado

#6,051

Overall
14 Views Last Month
2,540 Since May 3, 2015
Intermediate/Difficult

0%
0%
38%
63%
0%
0%

Photos

Upper Forest Lake in October.
Oct 17, 2016 near Winter…, CO
Northern view from Rogers Pass
Jul 6, 2018 near Winter…, CO
Rogers Peak Lake
Jul 6, 2018 near Winter…, CO
Southern view from Rogers Pass
Jul 6, 2018 near Winter…, CO
Moffet Tunnel  (east portal)
May 3, 2015 near Winter…, CO

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