Middle Lake-FDT 2223


Difficulty:                   More Difficult

Trail Use:                  Low

Length:                     3.5 miles

Elevation:                 Starts at 9664 ft, ends at 11,146 ft, highest point 11,795 ft

Elevation Gain:       +1482 feet

Open To:                  Hiking, horseback riding


Access :   Travel 16.5 miles east from Eagle on I-70 to the Edwards exit and head south towards the town and Hwy. 6.   At Hwy. 6 turn right, heading west, for 0.7 miles to Lake Creek Rd., turn left, south, at the National Forest Access sign.   Travel on this road for 1.8 miles and turn right onto West Lake Creek Road.   Travel 2.7 miles to the Baryeta Cabins Rd., FDR 423, and turn right at the switchback. This road will become a rough, rutted, 4-wheel drive road for 3.2 miles until it dead-ends at the Baryeta Cabins site.   There is parking at the trailhead and information board, no mountain bikes allowed past this point. 

Trail Highlights :   This trail is one of the steepest and most challenging trails on the Eagle District, traveling from the Baryeta Cabins site through the Holy Cross Wilderness to Middle Lake.   The trail climbs 1000 feet in the first 1/2 mile to a total rise of 2200 feet at the highest point 2.5 miles along the trail. At 1.5 miles Dead Dog-FDT 2220 connects with the trail.   The trail begins by crossing West Lake Creek and climbing through spruce and fir up a number of switchbacks, then through a krummholtz forest before it comes to a rocky alpine meadow. Be sure to look for stone cairns to help guide the way.   The descent to Middle Lake, 680 feet, is very steep and rocky. This 9 acre lake is surrounded by spruce/fir and rocky, snow-covered peaks rising in the background.   The lake offers the opportunity to fish for rainbow and Colorado cutthroat trout.   A wide variety of alpine wildflowers can be viewed in the meadows: kings’ crown, white marsh marigold, globeflower, harebells and phlox.  

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