Columbine Lake Trail

Written by Raymond Hamilton.

Elevation Difficulty Recommended Use Distance Season
10,200 feet Difficult
5.0 Miles Memorial Day Weekend - Labor Day Weekend

Driving Directions:

From Durango, Colorado, Approximately 57 miles north of Durango on U.S. Highway 550, turn off on Ophir Pass Road (Federal Development Road #679) Follow this down across Mineral Creek until you come to a turn off to the right. Parking is best here since parking at the immediate trailhead is limited. Follow this old mining road approximately 1 mile to the unmarked trail on the left.

Hiking Directions:

This "secret" spot is usually frequented by only a few locals due to its isolated location and difficult access. The trail consists of many steep switchbacks, then eases out into the basin below Columbine Lake. A few camp spots are available, but remember to move your tent every two days to protect the fragile tundra. Fishing is possible if you desire a trout dinner. Surrounding mountains should be attempted by experienced climbers only.


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