Length: 16.2 miles (one way) Trail Use: Moderate
Difficulty: Difficult Open To: 4WD, OHV, Hiking
Beginning Elevation: 9,400 ft. Ending Elevation: 14,269 ft.
Elevation Gain: +4,869 ft. USGS Map(s): Salida
Access from Vail: Travel west on I-70 to Exit #171 for Minturn, Leadville, and Hwy 24. Exit here and turn right onto Hwy 24. Proceed south through Leadville and merge on US-285 and continue south for about 30 miles to County Road 162. Take a right on County Road 162 and continue for 12 miles to the junction with Baldwin Creek Road.
Trail Highlights: There are several 4WD routes to the summit, but this is the most popular, least challenging, and safest. The road climbs steeply for the first 1.25 miles and turns sharply to the south where it intersects with two other jeep roads. Baldwin Creek will be crossed a couple of times as the road climbs steadily, and at about mile 2.75 there will be a fork in the road; take the way across Baldwin Creek. At about mile 4.75 the road begins to switchback, and about a mile later the road forks again where you will stay left. From here you will stay at about 13,000’ feet for awhile, drop a couple hundred feet, and then climb again to the top at 13,760’. To reach the summit you must hike the remaining ¼ mile. More than half of the Baldwin Creek Road is single lane and there are nearly no pullouts or turnarounds making this a road for experienced drivers only.