River/Creek · Views · Wildflowers
Mostly packed dirt, not very rocky or rooty. A few short eroded sections.
Starting from the east side of exit 190 at Vail Pass, find the start of the Corral Creek Trail that heads up through low bushes and into the woods. After a brief steep uphill, the trail settles into a more mellow grade passing through evergreens and meadows. Keep to the widest, most established main trail ignoring the many braided smaller trails that are the likely result of fall mushroom hunting. You may spot some old, blue diamond trail markers nailed high up on the trees, but these soon disappear.
Before long, you emerge into a broad valley covered with grasses and wildflowers which peak from mid July to early August. Here the trail widens to old doubletrack and the highway noise fades. There is also evidence of past logging activities, with some stumps cut low and some cut very high from winter harvesting. Enter a lush forest and climb more steeply until you pop out at the foot of a large scree field. Skirt around this talus and approach the huge alpine meadow. Here pika chirp their greeting and burbling streams cut through the fields of wildflowers. This enchanting place has great 360 degree views.
You certainly feel like you've reached a very remote place and are unlikely to have company here. Continue across the stream, climbing steeply into an upper cirque. The official trail ends here at this idyllic spot where an open outcropping invites you to linger over the views. Those with more energy can scramble up the steep scree to reach the Uneva Peak ridgeline for distant views of Lake Dillon and beyond.
Note: It is a good idea to wear bright orange in the fall to be seen by hunters.
Flora & Fauna
Paintbrush, asters, lilies, bluebells. Pika, chipmunks, squirrels.
Shared By: Megan W