Join a trained Certified Interpretive Guide and Wilderness First Responder to discover some of the most beautiful hiking destinations in the Vail area that are only accessible via your two feet! Walking Mountains Science Center and the Vail Recreation District operate under special permits from the US Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management that allow us to experience and learn from public lands like few other Vail hiking guide services can offer! Transportation is provided from various locations from Vail to Edwards.

Click here to learn about our free daily nature walks.

Questions: Peter Suneson | peters@walkingmountains.org | 970.827.9725×128

Just click on a date and trail below to register and learn more about the trail!

2017 Full Day Hikes

Tuesdays, Wednesdays & Fridays (6/6 – 9/1)
Tuesdays & Fridays (9/5 – 10/31)

Ages 16+, $80 or $75 for VRD taxpayers.

July 5th | Missouri Lakes

A local favorite, the Missouri Lakes trail is a heavily used trail that provides excellent views of the Sawatch Range and pristine alpine lakes. Our full-day “loop” hike is the most ambitious hike on our schedule and hikers travel over Fancy Pass through alpine meadows and through all seven of the Missouri Lakes.

USFS Fact Sheet.

July 7th | Bighorn Creek

This is one of the more challenging East Vail hikes but the payoff is well worth the physical exhaustion! A few old mining camps mark the turnaround during this full-day hike and hikers are rewarded with views of the I-70 corridor and Vail Mountain. We time this hike to coincide with the bloom of glacier lilies, one of the sweetest tasting flowers you will ever try!

USFS Fact Sheet.

July 11th | Lake Charles

The trail to Lake Charles begins in Sylvan Lake State Park near the famous Fulford Cave. The trail follows East Brush Creek up to the lake which is situated in the Holy Cross Wilderness area and is the beginning of a more ambitious trek to Mystic Island Lake, a local favorite. A relatively moderate trail, be prepared for views of Sylvan Lake State Park and numerous granite outcrops.

USFS Fact Sheet.

July 14th | Notch Mountain

Notch Mountain is a true 13er and hikers should be prepared for numerous switchbacks above treeline. Ending at a small stone hut with a backyard view of Mount of the Holy Cross, this trail is not for the faint-hearted but the payoff is well worth the exertion as you step into the very same spot William Henry Jackson stood as he took his infamous picture of the snow filled ravines.

USFS Fact Sheet.

July 17th | Interlaken NEW TRAIL!

The Interlaken hotel complex was a swank resort that operated on the banks of the glacial Twin Lakes during the late 1800’s. Today, the site is a relic of Leadville’s rich history, and although many of the structures still remain, the only visitors come via hiking boot. This is a relatively moderate hike that follows the shoreline of Twin Lakes. 

USFS Fact Sheet.

July 19th | Colorado Trail to Kokomo Pass

Departing from the historic Camp Hale, home of the renowned 10th Mountain Division, this is the steeper section of the Colorado Trail in the area. We will head North and be graced with views of Copper Mountain, Frisco, and Breckenridge. This is one of the premier fall color hikes in the area.

USFS Fact Sheet.

July 21st | Missouri Lakes Loop

A local favorite, the Missouri Lakes trail is a heavily used trail that provides excellent views of the Sawatch Range and pristine alpine lakes. Our full-day “loop” hike is the most ambitious hike on our schedule and hikers travel over Fancy Pass through alpine meadows and through all seven of the Missouri Lakes.

USFS Fact Sheet.

July 25th | Midline Loop NEW TRAIL!

One of the rare, looped trail systems in the area, this trail ascends in the Hagerman Pass area providing excellent views of Turquoise Lake and the surrounding wilderness areas. This 5.5 mile round trip only covers 400 feet of elevation gain, making it one of the more accessible trails in the Leadville Area. 

USFS Fact Sheet.

July 26th | Uneva Peak

The Uneva Peak Trail departs across from the Vail Pass rest stop and ascends the opposite side of Vail Pass. Hikers are rewarded with meadows full of paintbrush of all shades and concludes with an overlook of Lake Dillon and the town of Frisco. If you’re looking to get into snow this summer, Uneva peak is always a possibility!

July 28th | Piney River

Departing from the locally famous Piney Ranch, this trail skirts around Piney Lake to end at the waterfalls above the lake. Piney Lake is a private in-holding within the White River National Forest and home to some of the most easily accessible mountain/ lake recreation in the area. Hikers should be prepared for a long dirt road to get to the trail head but the experience is well worth the wait.

USFS Fact Sheet.

August 1st | Notch Mountain

Notch Mountain Hiking Trail Colorado

Notch Mountain is a true 13er and hikers should be prepared for numerous switchbacks above treeline. Ending at a small stone hut with a backyard view of Mount of the Holy Cross, this trail is not for the faint-hearted but the payoff is well worth the exertion as you step into the very same spot William Henry Jackson stood as he took his infamous picture of the snow filled ravines.

USFS Fact Sheet.

August 2nd | Mount of the Holy Cross

holycrossThe only 14er in the Holy Cross Wilderness, Mount of the Holy Cross can be seen as the driving force behind the development of the Eagle Valley and surrounding towns. This difficult trek will begin before sunrise and hikers will face challenges clambering over scree fields and over a mountain pass as we spend a full day checking Mount of the Holy Cross off the 14er checklist. After registering to hike Mount of the Holy Cross, you will be contacted by the guide to go over the logistics of the hike. As this is an advanced hike, prior hiking or mountaineering skills are desired as is being acclimated to our thin mountain air.

USFS Fact Sheet.

August 4th | Machine Gun Ridge

Machine Gun Ridge Hiking Trail ColoradoArguably the most scenic hike we’ll do this summer, Machine Gun Ridge is home to old artillery and live fire testing done by the soldiers training at Camp Hale. Beginning above treeline, the cat track trail follows a ridgeline with 360 degree panoramas of the surrounding mountains. Wildflowers are abundant as is the sunshine! 

August 8th | Bear Lake Trail NEW TRAIL!

The hike to Bear Lake climbs the south ridge of Galena Mountain, and from the top, you can see a large part of the upper Arkansas Valley and some of Colorado’s highest peaks. The trail then drops into spruce-fir forest, wandering past several little ponds and lakes. Bear Lake sits on a wide flat bench bordered by big boulders on its west side. The hike to Bear Lake follows the path of the old Main Range Trail, which was built by the Civilian Conservation Corps during the Depression in the 1930s for fire protection.

USFS Fact Sheet. 

August 9th | Mystic Island Lake NEW TRAIL!

An extension of the Lake Charles trail, the route to Mystic Island Lake is only another mile and the magnificent views are totally worth the effort. Mystic Island Lake is nestled beneath some of the Sawatch Range’s most impressive peaks and the namesake island is truly a treasure to behold. 

USFS Fact Sheet.

August 11th | Bowman's Shortcut

Departing from the Shrine Pass Road atop Vail Pass, this trail provides excellent views of the Gore and Ten Mile Ranges.  We will circumvent portions of Vail’s back bowls that are closed for elk calving season. If time allows, we will take a short side trip to Julia’s Deck, a wheelchair accessible viewing deck that provides a panorama of Mount of the Holy Cross.

USFS Fact Sheet.

 

August 15th | Colorado Trail to Mt Elbert View NEW TRAIL!

This section of the Colorado Trail is for those hikers who are intrigued by Mt. Elbert, the highest point in Colorado, but aren’t quite sure they can make it to the top. The trail follows the base of the mountain and hikers will see the numerous routes used to summit the peak and will give hikers an idea of what it takes to add a 14er to the life list.

USFS Fact Sheet.

August 16th | Fall Creek Pass

Formerly referred to as Lake Constantine, the Fall Creek Pass trail passes by Lake Constantine and Tuhare Lake as it continues deeper into the Holy Cross Wilderness. From Fall Creek Pass we’ll look out over the Seven Sisters Lakes and up at the soaring Whitney Peak.

USFS Fact Sheet.

August 18th | Mt Elbert NEW TRAIL!

The highest point in Colorado is our destination on this long, but accessible ascent. At 14,430 feet above sea level, this hike will truly test your lungs but reward you with true “top-of-the-world” emotions. This difficult trek will begin well before sunrise and hikers will face challenges clambering over scree fields and steep slopes to cross Elbert off the 14er checklist. After registering to hike, you will be contacted by the guide to go over the logistics of the hike. As this is an advanced hike, prior hiking or mountaineering skills are desired as is being acclimated to our thin mountain air.

USFS Fact Sheet. 

August 22nd | Buckeye Gulch NEW TRAIL!

A popular year-round trail leading to Buckeye Peak and the Sangree Froelicher Hut provides great views with a very moderate effort. Hikers follow an old 4×4 road for a couple miles before splitting off and slowly winding up through tree-line across grassy alpine slopes. If you’re looking for “Sound of Music” views, this is your hike!

USFS Fact Sheet. 

August 23rd | Tuhare Lakes NEW TRAIL!

Following the Fall Creek Pass trail just past Lake Constantine, hikers will be faced with a moderate scramble as they head up to the cascading Tuhare Lakes. Completely surrounded by alpine peaks and exposed granite, the trail to Tuhare will give hikers the feeling of spending a full-day in the alpine without the time commitment.

August 25th | Big Park Loop NEW TRAIL!

Another locals “stash” hike, this loop connects the Squaw Creek trail to Big Park and the Stagg Gulch trail in Edwards. We’ll follow the creek till we reach the cat track up Poison Gulch where we’ll climb up to the meadows of Big Park and back down the Stagg Gulch trail.

August 29th | Colorado Trail to Mt Galena View NEW TRAIL!

Departing from West Tennessee Creek road, hikers will follow the Colorado Trail south as the Collegiate Peaks loom far into the distance. The Colorado Trail passes through the foothills below the nearly 13,000ft Galena Mountain providing hikers great views of the peak and Turquoise Lake below.

USFS Fact Sheet.

August 30th | Lonesome Lake

One of the more ambitious trails on the schedule for this summer, the trail begins near Homestake Reservoir and passes through open meadows to end at a pristine alpine lake. Hikes are graced with views of cabins from a time passed and wildflowers as far as the eye can see.

USFS Fact Sheet.

September 1st | New York Mountain

This challenging yet rewarding hike provides excellent views of Sylvan Lake and down valley hotspots while views of the backside of Mount of the Holy Cross is ever present. This trail has access to some of the areas once famous for hard rock mining including the town of Fulford and passing by Fools Peak and Gold Dust peak.

USFS Fact Sheet.

September 5th | Uneva Peak

Uneva Peak Hiking Trail Colorado

The Uneva Peak Trail departs across from the Vail Pass rest stop and ascends the opposite side of Vail Pass. Hikers are rewarded with meadows full of paintbrush of all shades and concludes with an overlook of Lake Dillon and the town of Frisco. If you’re looking to get into snow this summer, Uneva peak is always a possibility!

September 8th | Whiskey Creek

Whiskey Creek Hiking Trail ColoradoAccessible via a turnoff on US highway 6 in Eagle Vail, this trail ascends the back side of Meadow Mountain and provides hikers with views of Beaver Creek Mountain and the I-70 corridor. Whiskey Creek Trail is a lovely scenic trail through alternating grassy meadows, aspens, and conifers.

September 12th | Colorado Trail to Kokomo Pass

Walking Mountains Science Center Adult Hiking Vail Colorado_WEBDeparting from the historic Camp Hale, home of the renowned 10th Mountain Division, this is the steeper section of the Colorado Trail in the area. We will head North and be graced with views of Copper Mountain, Frisco, and Breckenridge.

USFS Fact Sheet.

September 15th | Bowman's Shortcut

Bowmans Shortcut Hiking Trail ColoradoDeparting from the Shrine Pass Road atop Vail Pass, this trail provides excellent views of the Gore and Ten Mile Ranges.  We will circumvent portions of Vail’s back bowls that are closed for elk calving season. If time allows, we will take a short side trip to Julia’s Deck, a wheelchair accessible viewing deck that provides a panorama of Mount of the Holy Cross.

USFS Fact Sheet.

September 18th | Stag Gulch

The premier fall color hike that puts all the others to shame, Stagg Gulch is located at the same trail head as the Squaw Creek trail. Although steeper than Squaw Creek, the trail climbs into pastures and grasslands surrounded by bountiful aspen and graces hikers with views of Cordillera, Edwards, and further back into the Holy Cross wilderness. If you make just one fall color hike, this is it! 

September 22nd | Red and White Mountain NEW TRAIL!

The high point near Walking Mountains’ home in Avon, summiting Red and White Mountain is a must-do for locals in the Eagle Valley. From the top we’ll look out over Vail, Beaver Creek, and the I70 corridor and even get a glimpse of the Flat Tops to our north. This is a long day but a great opportunity to hike from the valley bottom to the top of the mountains!

September 26th | Whitney Lake

Departing from Homestake Road, The trail ascends steeply through aspen and conifer groves. At various points along the trail views of the Sawatch Range can be viewed. Whitney Peak rises up from the north lake shore to an elevation of 13,271 ft. The large, sub-alpine lake offers excellent fishing and scenic views. Whitney Peak can be climbed by following the west ridge up to the summit.

USFS Fact Sheet.

September 29th | Colorado Trail to Kokomo Pass

Departing from the historic Camp Hale, home of the renowned 10th Mountain Division, this is the steeper section of the Colorado Trail in the area. We will head North and be graced with views of Copper Mountain, Frisco, and Breckenridge. This is one of the premier fall color hikes in the area.

USFS Fact Sheet.

October 3rd | Squaw Creek

The Squaw Creek trail begins at Squaw Creek Road and ends at Salt Creek Trail #1878. The trail starts with a steep climb through wildflowers and aspen, becoming more gradual as you pass ranch property below and to the left of the trail. The trail follows an old road grade up the Squaw Creek drainage before turning back into singletrack, crossing meadows, and Elk Meadow which provides a chance to see scarlet gilia, lupine, geranium, and the various paintbrush wildflowers.

USFS Fact Sheet.

October 6th | Buck Creek

Buck Creek HikeJoin us in our very own backyard for an exciting trip up the hills overlooking Avon and Walking Mountains Science Center’s campus. Departing from Buck Creek Road, just above Walking Mountains’ campus, this trail crosses over Buck Creek a few times as it winds up to a junction with Red and White Road. We will stop for lunch overlooking the town of Avon and Beaver Creek and be rewarded with a whole new vantage point of where many of us call home.

October 10th | Whiskey Creek

Accessible via a turnoff on US highway 6 in Eagle Vail, this trail ascends the back side of Meadow Mountain and provides hikers with views of Beaver Creek Mountain and the I-70 corridor. Whiskey Creek Trail is a lovely scenic trail through alternating grassy meadows, aspens, and conifers.

October 13th | Bighorn Creek

This is one of the more challenging East Vail hikes but the payoff is well worth the physical exhaustion! A few old mining camps mark the turnaround during this full-day hike and hikers are rewarded with views of the I-70 corridor and Vail Mountain. We time this hike to coincide with the bloom of glacier lilies, one of the sweetest tasting flowers you will ever try!

USFS Fact Sheet.

October 17th | North Trail

A local favorite, this easily accessible trail follows the ridgeline opposite Vail Mountain providing great views of the ski hill and Town of Vail. Departing from Red Sandstone Road, we hike a short portion of this main thoroughfare and pass through mixed aspen and conifer forests while experiencing firsthand some of the damage incurred by the mountain pine beetle. 

USFS Fact Sheet.

October 20th | Piney Falls

Departing from the locally famous Piney Ranch, this trail skirts around Piney Lake to end at the waterfalls above the lake. Piney Lake is a private in-holding within the White River National Forest and home to some of the most easily accessible mountain/ lake recreation in the area. Hikers should be prepared for a long dirt road to get to the trail head but the experience is well worth the wait.

USFS Fact Sheet.

October 24th | Gore Lake

Gore creek hiking trail coloradoOne of the more popular trails in the Vail area that also shares the namesake with our gorgeous surrounding mountains, the Gore Creek trail is easily accessible and relatively moderate for an East Vail trail. Full-day hikes will conclude at the gravesite for two hard-rock miners who are just some of the legendary figures in the Vail Valley!

USFS Fact Sheet.

October 27th | Lost Lake

One of the most popular and easily accessible for Vail hikers, the Lost Lake trail departs from a trailhead off Red Sandstone Road and travels through a ghost lodgepole forest providing views of Vail Mountain. This is a great opportunity to reach a mountain lake in just half a day. Be prepared to be joined by Gray Jays for lunch!

USFS Fact Sheet.

October 31st | Lost Lake

One of the most popular and easily accessible for Vail hikers, the Lost Lake trail departs from a trailhead off Red Sandstone Road and travels through a ghost lodgepole forest providing views of Vail Mountain. This is a great opportunity to reach a mountain lake in just half a day. Be prepared to be joined by Gray Jays for lunch!

USFS Fact Sheet.

June 6th | Buck Creek

Buck Creek HikeJoin us in our very own backyard for an exciting trip up the hills overlooking Avon and Walking Mountains Science Center’s campus. Departing from Buck Creek Road, just above Walking Mountains’ campus, this trail crosses over Buck Creek a few times as it winds up to a junction with Red and White Road. We will stop for lunch overlooking the town of Avon and Beaver Creek and be rewarded with a whole new vantage point of where many of us call home. 

June 7th | Tennessee Pass

Departing from historic Camp Hale, home of the renowned 10th Mountain Division, this long but mellow trail passes through the old training grounds and concludes at the Continental Divide near Ski Cooper. The trail winds its way along an old railway bed and hikers will get a close up view of old settlers’ cabins and coke ovens that were used to make the charcoal for the historic railways.

USFS Fact Sheet.

June 9th | McKenzie Gulch

Another down valley hike departing from near Sylvan Lake State Park, this trail follows the gulch to views of the park and surrounding areas. We will pass by a turnoff to natural springs and stop for lunch at a secluded overlook providing views of the beautiful Sylvan Lake.

USFS Fact Sheet.

June 13th | Sneve Gulch

The Sneve Gulch trail begins at Sylvan Lake and ends at Forest Road #436. The trail begins in aspen and climbs up steeply to an overlook of Sylvan Lake. This well-marked, maintained trail has steep grades while passing through open meadows, aspen, spruce, fir and lodgepole pine forest. Parts of the trail have views of Red Table Mountain to the southwest and the high, red sandstone cliffs of Mount Eve to the north.

USFS Fact Sheet.

June 14th | Stagg Gulch

Stag Gulch is located at the same trail head as the Squaw Creek trail. Although steeper than Squaw Creek, the trail climbs into pastures and grasslands surrounded by bountiful aspen and graces hikers with views of Cordillera, Edwards, and further back into the Holy Cross wilderness.

June 16th | Meadow Mountain

A recreation hotspot that is also home to the United States Forest Service Minturn Ranger Station, the Meadow Mountain trail winds its way from the valley bottom, once used as a lettuce farm, to a mixed aspen forest. A popular and easy trail, this half-day hiking location is perfect for those looking to learn more about the history of the area while enjoying views of the backside of Vail Mountain. 

USFS Fact Sheet.

June 20th | Booth Falls

The Booth Lake Trail is one of the most popular trails in the Vail area. After a rather steep climb, hikers are rewarded with views of the beautiful Booth Falls. The waterfalls mark the intended turnaround for half-day hikes and make for a great “polaroid moment.” Full-day hikes will conclude at Booth Lake which is a full 6 miles and 3,000 ft above the trailhead. Although the lower section may be busy, the portion of the trail above the falls rewards those persevering hikers with a gorgeous mountain lake surrounded by the Gore Range.

USFS Fact Sheet.

June 21st | Wilder Gulch

This is a pleasant 3½ mile hike from the parking lot at Vail Pass to the top of Ptarmigan Pass. There are potential opportunities for viewing a variety of wildlife and wildflowers. The trail ascends gently while it passes in and out of coniferous forests and meadows. At the end of the Wilder Gulch trail you will come to a 4WD road that you can follow up to Ptarmigan Pass. Ptarmigan Pass offers fantastic views of the northern Sawatch Range and the west side of the Gore Range. 

June 27th | Squaw Creek

The Squaw Creek trail begins at Squaw Creek Road and ends at Salt Creek Trail #1878. The trail starts with a steep climb through wildflowers and aspen, becoming more gradual as you pass ranch property below and to the left of the trail. The trail follows an old road grade up the Squaw Creek drainage before turning back into singletrack, crossing meadows, and Elk Meadow which provides a chance to see scarlet gilia, lupine, geranium, and the various paintbrush wildflowers.

USFS Fact Sheet.

June 28th | Mt Thomas

A down valley trail departing from near Sylvan Lake State Park, the Mt. Thomas trail’s best features are the panoramic views seen in all directions of the Frying Pan Valley, Ruedi Reservoir, Maroon Bells, and Snowmass of Aspen seen to the south. Northward, the Brush Creek drainage, Leeman Gulch, with associated lakes and the snowcapped peaks of the Gore Range are visible. 

USFS Fact Sheet.

June 30th | Machine Gun Ridge

Arguably the most scenic hike we’ll do this summer, Machine Gun Ridge is home to old artillery and live fire testing done by the soldiers training at Camp Hale. Beginning above treeline, the cat track trail follows a ridgeline with 360 degree panoramas of the surrounding mountains. Wildflowers are abundant as is the sunshine!

2017 Family Hikes (6/8-10/5)

Summer Hikes: Thursdays | 9:00am – 1:00pm (6/8-8/31)
Fall Color Hikes: Wednesday & Thursdays | 9:00 am – 1:00 pm (9/6-10/5)

Family hikes are at a more casual pace and are fun for the whole family! Ages 8+, $30 or $25 for VRD taxpayers.

July 6th | Stagg Gulch

Stag Gulch is located at the same trail head as the Squaw Creek trail. Although steeper than Squaw Creek, the trail climbs into pastures and grasslands surrounded by bountiful aspen and graces hikers with views of Cordillera, Edwards, and further back into the Holy Cross wilderness.

July 13th | Meadow Mountain

A recreation hotspot that is also home to the United States Forest Service Minturn Ranger Station, the Meadow Mountain trail winds its way from the valley bottom, once used as a lettuce farm, to a mixed aspen forest. A popular and easy trail, this half-day hiking location is perfect for those looking to learn more about the history of the area while enjoying views of the backside of Vail Mountain.

USFS Fact Sheet.

July 20th | North Trail

A local favorite, this easily accessible trail follows the ridgeline opposite Vail Mountain providing great views of the ski hill and Town of Vail. Departing from Red Sandstone Road, we hike a short portion of this main thoroughfare and pass through mixed aspen and conifer forests while experiencing firsthand some of the damage incurred by the mountain pine beetle. 

USFS Fact Sheet.

July 27th | North Trail

A local favorite, this easily accessible trail follows the ridgeline opposite Vail Mountain providing great views of the ski hill and Town of Vail. Departing from Red Sandstone Road, we hike a short portion of this main thoroughfare and pass through mixed aspen and conifer forests while experiencing firsthand some of the damage incurred by the mountain pine beetle. 

USFS Fact Sheet.

August 10th | Booth Falls

The Booth Lake Trail is one of the most popular trails in the Vail area. After a rather steep climb, hikers are rewarded with views of the beautiful Booth Falls. The waterfalls mark the intended turnaround for half-day hikes and make for a great “polaroid moment.” Full-day hikes will conclude at Booth Lake which is a full 6 miles and 3,000 ft above the trailhead. Although the lower section may be busy, the portion of the trail above the falls rewards those persevering hikers with a gorgeous mountain lake surrounded by the Gore Range.

USFS Fact Sheet.

August 17th | Booth Falls

The Booth Lake Trail is one of the most popular trails in the Vail area. After a rather steep climb, hikers are rewarded with views of the beautiful Booth Falls. The waterfalls mark the intended turnaround for half-day hikes and make for a great “polaroid moment.” Full-day hikes will conclude at Booth Lake which is a full 6 miles and 3,000 ft above the trailhead. Although the lower section may be busy, the portion of the trail above the falls rewards those persevering hikers with a gorgeous mountain lake surrounded by the Gore Range.

USFS Fact Sheet.

August 24th | Booth Falls

The Booth Lake Trail is one of the most popular trails in the Vail area. After a rather steep climb, hikers are rewarded with views of the beautiful Booth Falls. The waterfalls mark the intended turnaround for half-day hikes and make for a great “polaroid moment.” Full-day hikes will conclude at Booth Lake which is a full 6 miles and 3,000 ft above the trailhead. Although the lower section may be busy, the portion of the trail above the falls rewards those persevering hikers with a gorgeous mountain lake surrounded by the Gore Range.

USFS Fact Sheet.

August 31st | Meadow Mountain

A recreation hotspot that is also home to the United States Forest Service Minturn Ranger Station, the Meadow Mountain trail winds its way from the valley bottom, once used as a lettuce farm, to a mixed aspen forest. A popular and easy trail, this half-day hiking location is perfect for those looking to learn more about the history of the area while enjoying views of the backside of Vail Mountain.

USFS Fact Sheet.

September 6th | Gore Creek

Gore creek hiking trail coloradoOne of the more popular trails in the Vail area that also shares the namesake with our gorgeous surrounding mountains, the Gore Creek trail is easily accessible and relatively moderate for an East Vail trail.

USFS Fact Sheet.

September 7th | Booth Falls

The Booth Lake Trail is one of the most popular trails in the Vail area. After a rather steep climb, hikers are rewarded with views of the beautiful Booth Falls. The waterfalls mark the intended turnaround for half-day hikes and make for a great “polaroid moment.” Full-day hikes will conclude at Booth Lake which is a full 6 miles and 3,000 ft above the trailhead. Although the lower section may be busy, the portion of the trail above the falls rewards those persevering hikers with a gorgeous mountain lake surrounded by the Gore Range.

USFS Fact Sheet.

September 13th | East Lake Creek

A very popular trail our of the Edwards area, the Lake Creek drainage provides great views of New York Mountain and historic mining ruins. Beavers are especially busy in the area and have caused many parts of the drainage area to become swampy and abundant with wildflowers and wildlife. Since this is a 12+ mile long trail, we’ll hike until we get tired then turn around! 

USFS Fact Sheet.

September 14th | Cross Creek

Departing from a trailhead off Tigiwon Road just outside Minturn, this trail quickly enters into the Holy Cross Wilderness area. Hikers get to see first-hand the affects glaciers had carving out this tremendous valley. Since this is part of a 14+ mile trail, full-day hikes will reach a turnaround around lunchtime and half-day hikes will turn around at a spot on the trail that provides an excellent view of Mount of the Holy Cross.

USFS Fact Sheet.

September 20th | East Lake Creek

A very popular trail our of the Edwards area, the Lake Creek drainage provides great views of New York Mountain and historic mining ruins. Beavers are especially busy in the area and have caused many parts of the drainage area to become swampy and abundant with wildflowers and wildlife. Since this is a 12+ mile long trail, we’ll hike until we get tired then turn around! 

USFS Fact Sheet.

September 21st | Cross Creek

Departing from a trailhead off Tigiwon Road just outside Minturn, this trail quickly enters into the Holy Cross Wilderness area. Hikers get to see first-hand the affects glaciers had carving out this tremendous valley. Since this is part of a 14+ mile trail, full-day hikes will reach a turnaround around lunchtime and half-day hikes will turn around at a spot on the trail that provides an excellent view of Mount of the Holy Cross.

USFS Fact Sheet.

September 27th | East Lake Creek

A very popular trail our of the Edwards area, the Lake Creek drainage provides great views of New York Mountain and historic mining ruins. Beavers are especially busy in the area and have caused many parts of the drainage area to become swampy and abundant with wildflowers and wildlife. Since this is a 12+ mile long trail, we’ll hike until we get tired then turn around! 

USFS Fact Sheet.

September 28th | Cross Creek

Departing from a trailhead off Tigiwon Road just outside Minturn, this trail quickly enters into the Holy Cross Wilderness area. Hikers get to see first-hand the affects glaciers had carving out this tremendous valley. Since this is part of a 14+ mile trail, full-day hikes will reach a turnaround around lunchtime and half-day hikes will turn around at a spot on the trail that provides an excellent view of Mount of the Holy Cross.

USFS Fact Sheet.

October 4th | Stagg Gulch

Stag Gulch is located at the same trail head as the Squaw Creek trail. Although steeper than Squaw Creek, the trail climbs into pastures and grasslands surrounded by bountiful aspen and graces hikers with views of Cordillera, Edwards, and further back into the Holy Cross wilderness.

October 5th | Booth Falls

The Booth Lake Trail is one of the most popular trails in the Vail area. After a rather steep climb, hikers are rewarded with views of the beautiful Booth Falls. The waterfalls mark the intended turnaround for half-day hikes and make for a great “polaroid moment.” Full-day hikes will conclude at Booth Lake which is a full 6 miles and 3,000 ft above the trailhead. Although the lower section may be busy, the portion of the trail above the falls rewards those persevering hikers with a gorgeous mountain lake surrounded by the Gore Range.

USFS Fact Sheet.

June 8th | Meadow Mountain

Meadow Mountain Hiking Trail ColoradoA recreation hotspot that is also home to the United States Forest Service Minturn Ranger Station, the Meadow Mountain trail winds its way from the valley bottom, once used as a lettuce farm, to a mixed aspen forest. A popular and easy trail, this half-day hiking location is perfect for those looking to learn more about the history of the area while enjoying views of the backside of Vail Mountain.

USFS Fact Sheet.

June 15th | North Trail

A local favorite, this easily accessible trail follows the ridgeline opposite Vail Mountain providing great views of the ski hill and Town of Vail. Departing from Red Sandstone Road, we hike a short portion of this main thoroughfare and pass through mixed aspen and conifer forests while experiencing firsthand some of the damage incurred by the mountain pine beetle. 

USFS Fact Sheet.

June 22nd | North Trail

A local favorite, this easily accessible trail follows the ridgeline opposite Vail Mountain providing great views of the ski hill and Town of Vail. Departing from Red Sandstone Road, we hike a short portion of this main thoroughfare and pass through mixed aspen and conifer forests while experiencing firsthand some of the damage incurred by the mountain pine beetle.

USFS Fact Sheet.

June 29th | Lost Lake

One of the most popular and easily accessible for Vail hikers, the Lost Lake trail departs from a trailhead off Red Sandstone Road and travels through a ghost lodgepole forest providing views of Vail Mountain. This is a great opportunity to reach a mountain lake in just half a day. Be prepared to be joined by Gray Jays for lunch!

USFS Fact Sheet.

Hikers should come prepared to spend the day on the trail, including bringing lunch, rain gear, and plenty of water. Full-day hikes (ages 16+) are geared towards hikers who are looking for a truly immersive experience whereas family hikes (ages 8+) are more leisurely pace and fun for the whole family! Click here to learn about our free daily nature walks.

We also offer Hiking Club Memberships!
The Vail Nature Center Hiking Club, in its 20th year of hiking throughout the Eagle Valley, offers members unlimited access to full and half-day hikes throughout the entire hiking season. Club members also receive additional perks such as a Colorado Search and Rescue membership card, discounts on select Walking Mountains’ programs, and personal assistance registering and planning hikes. Vail Recreation District property owners receive a discount! Contact Peter Suneson, peters@walkingmountains.org for more information or join today!

The Eagle-Holy Cross Ranger District has put together a helpful sheet on how to prevent risk and injury while enjoying Colorado’s National Forests. Click here to view their safety tips and learn more about some popular local trails.

  • Thank you so much for arranging our guided hike today. As always, we had a fantastic time, and the staff did an amazing job!! Word has spread about this event, and it is one of our most popular survivorship outings each year! We are looking forward to our next event with you.

    Spirit of Survival Group
  • Your dedication to hospitality and true passion is so admirable and today was no exception. As you clearly understand the gift in creating the memory and accomplishing goals is priceless…thank you!

    Dee Dee K.
  • Thank you so much! We unanimously agreed today was our favorite activity of our trip. You’ll definitely hear from us again and we’ll be sure to recommend to friends!

    Lauren H.

Cancellation Policy:

Hikes will go out in almost any weather. Walking Mountains Science Center reserves the right to cancel a hike due to unsafe conditions. If Walking Mountains cancels a hike, full refunds will be issued. If a hiker chooses to cancel prior to a week before a scheduled hike, 50% of the purchase price will be refunded. All cancellations made within a week of a scheduled hike surrender the full cost. Please contact Peter Suneson, peters@walkingmountains.org, 970-827-9725 ex 128 to discuss cancelling your hike.

Walking Mountains Science Center and the Vail Recreation District operate under a special use permit from the White River National Forest and the San Isabel National Forest and is an equal opportunity service provider. All or part of this operation is conducted on Public Lands under special permit from the U.S. Bureau of Land Management.

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