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CDT: Herman Gulch to Berthoud Pass (CO Sec. 31)



20.7 mile 33.3 kilometer point to point
81% Runnable


Ascent: 5,228' 1,593 m
Descent: -4,229' -1,289 m
High: 13,204' 4,025 m
Low: 10,315' 3,144 m


Avg Grade: 9% (5°)
Max Grade: 42% (23°)


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Trail shared by Guthrie Alexander

Herman Gulch to Berthoud Pass is an easily accessible introduction to the Continental Divide.

Guthrie Alexander

Features Fall Colors · Lake · River/Creek · Views · Wildflowers · Wildlife

Open year round, makes for a great snowshoe in the winter!

Section Of


The Herman Gulch Trailhead is located right off Interstate 70 just before Loveland Pass. The trail starts in an old road bed and steeply climbs the wooded slope though aspens. After turning north, the sounds of the highway quickly disappear, and you continue your ascent up the gulch. The trail weaves in and out of lots of pine and fir on its way above tree line. A short spur trail takes you up to Herman Lake.

From here, the next portion of the CDT climbs from a junction with Henderson Spur Trail along the southern aspects of Vasquez and Stanley mountains. From the get-go, the trail exceeds treeline and enters the alpine tundra.

After a brief ascent, the trail descends into a neighboring drainage. Now, the trail begins its steepest, most sustained ascent, leading for the summit of Stanley Mountain. This portion of trail is almost all exposed above treeline, so take careful note of the weather. Do not continue if storms appear to be building.

After running a hard-fought series of switchbacks on Stanley's southwestern nose, you'll gain the summit. Revel in the views from the top of the world and begin a stunning ridgetop traverse. The terrain will undulate and eventually drop off precipitously to this trail segment's end at Berthound Pass.

Flora & Fauna

Aspens line the lower elevations of this trail, and you move into fir and spruce at the higher elevations.

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Aug 31, 2019
Jeni Dwyer
Aug 21, 2019
Terri Kazanjian
Aug 7, 2017
Matt Keeny
Started at the Jones pass trailhead - 10 miles to Herman lake, 10 miles back. Beautiful! 20mi

Trail Ratings

  5.0 from 3 votes


in Front Range


  5.0 from 3 votes
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8 Views Last Month
1,497 Since Mar 17, 2016



Descending to Berthoud Pass.
Dec 12, 2015 near Winter…, CO
Fall color and snow dusting over Herman Gulch.
May 12, 2016 near Georgetown, CO
Discrete Peak Series - Berthoud Pass
Jul 21, 2015 near Winter…, CO
Discrete Peak Series - Berthoud Pass
Jul 21, 2015 near Winter…, CO
Great, well maintained singletrack on the way to Stanley Mt.
Sep 17, 2015 near Winter…, CO
Pettingell Peak on the far right
Nov 8, 2017 near Georgetown, CO


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