Lifes Adventures

Wagonwheel-FDT 2049

 

Difficulty:                  Moderate

Trail Use:                  Low

Length:                     4.6 miles

Elevation:                 Starts at 10,788 ft, ends at 9220 ft, highest point 10,788 ft

Elevation Gain:        -1568 feet

Open To:                  Hiking, horseback riding

 

Access :   Travel 13 miles west of Eagle on I-70 to the Dotsero exit and follow the signs for Sweetwater/Burns by turning north, right, onto the Colorado River Rd. After 1.7 miles take a right onto Coffee Pot Rd., FDR 600 and follow this road for 27 miles.   Take a left onto FDR 601, towards Heart Lake, and travel for 1.5 miles to the fork of FDR 601 and FDR 640, stay to the right on FDR 640, beyond this point it is 4-wheel drive only.    After 2 miles take a right onto Wagonwheel Rd., FDR 645 Travel for 1.5 miles, cross a creek and make a right onto Dry Buck Loop, FDR 644.   Stay to the left of the loop and the trailhead is 0.2 miles on the left at the unmarked jeep road.

Trail Highlights :   The trail leads through an open meadow with spruce and fir on either side down to Wagonwheel Creek in a northwesterly direction.   Cross the creek and the trail will turn to follow the creek down the valley into a meadow, be sure to look for the rock cairns that mark the trail through the meadow.   Eventually the creek descends rapidly into a canyon of spruce/fir forest and the trail follows from the slope above.   While crossing the steep slope beautiful views of Wagonwheel Creek and Shingle Peak are in the distance. The trail will descend through aspen, and then spruce and fir, descending steeply until it ends at Budges Resort.   The meadows support a variety of wildflowers including flax, paintbrushes, forget-me-nots, aster, lupine, larkspur, penstemon, and elephant blossom.   Herds of elk make this area home, along with the occasional coyote, various other species of wildlife can often be seen in the early morning and evening hours all along the trail.

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