Disadvantages: Requires a dehydrator, large time and effort. Advantages: Can be healthy, huge variety. A Guide to Drinking Water Treatment and Sanitation for Backcountry & Travel Use". A quick word about hiking The Colorado Trail in segments: Not everyone can spend 4-6 weeks hiking The Colorado Trail in one long hike. It is recommended that you try the backpack on in a store and have it correctly fit. Hitchhiking may be necessary when you are thru hiking so it is best to be prepared. SECTION 7A, 2021 is full. In some towns the selection is great and in others not so much. I prefer to use a Sawyer Squeeze filter as my main water purification method but also bring Aquamira disinfectant drops for bad water conditions. SECTION 2 - KENOSHA PASS TO CAMP HALE. It is a long-distance trail stretching for 782 km (486 miles) from Waterton Canyon southwest of Denver to Durango. Brian decided that he’d attempt a thousand-mile section starting in South Pass, Wyoming, and ending just south of Cuba, New Mexico (where he stopped in 2016). For more information on hitch hiking, read the how to hitchhike guide. Check out an Example Timeline of a thru hike that started in early in the season. The Colorado Trail is a well-marked and well maintained trail. Know that crowds FLOCK to Kenosha Pass each year to leaf peep, but you can enjoy your own slice of fall along the miles of more secluded hiking. This road is seasonal. Most hikers agreed that a 20°F bag was perfect on the Colorado Trail. Questions or comments about our hike along Colorado Trail Segment 5? After tackling the first three segments of the Colorado Trail in 2019, Jackie and I were itching to continue our segment hiking of the CT in 2020. "A Guide to Drinking Water Treatment and Sanitation for Backcountry & Travel Use", Water should be brought to a rolling boil for at least 3 minutes, Factors that effect filtration's effectiveness are the filter's pore size, amount of the contaminant, particle size of the contaminant, and charge of the contaminant particle, Factors that effect disinfectant's effectiveness are contact time, disinfectant concentration, temperature, cloudiness, and water pH. Gear is broken into mid-weight, lightweight, and ultralight-weight. Our hike of on this segment of the Colorado Trail was filled with snow and graupel showers, thundersnow and poor visibility. The faster you hike and less town stops you make, the less expensive your hike will be. By far the worst section is mile 3.5-4.5 where you will be forced to navigate through piles of downed pine trees. But for those who like a challenge, a 25-mile loop hike featuring the Knife Edge is an incredibly memorable journey. Colorado Trail Segment 5 is by far the most pretty of the first 5 segments while working through 14.6 miles of hiking and 1,858 feet of elevation gain. Segment 5 ends officially on the right side of the highway (west) but access to it is commonly gained on the right side by continuing to the bathrooms about .4 miles up the dirt road. Access to Water: Colorado Trail Segment 5 has a great water source right off the bat in a stream you must cross. Backpackers need to be aware of the 4 main contaminants: Cryptosporidium (Crpto), Giardia intestinalis (Giardia), Bacteria, and Viruses. As a general rule, you should pack 1.5 - 2 lb of food for each day in the backcountry. There is no additional charge to you. Advantages: Less hassle in town, can save by buying in bulk. Rather than hiking together, Justin would drive his dad to the trail and then meet up with him every few days to resupply his food and gear, keeping him insulated from the virus. Fees: There is no fee to hike segment 5 of the Colorado Trail. Post was not sent - check your email addresses! The Colorado Trail Foundation recommends that you start no sooner than July 1st. Hiking the Colorado Trail: Segment 1 and 2 I am blessed to live within a 30-minute drive of the Colorado Trail. Be prepared for more snow if you choose to hike outside this time frame. Choose your start date. Advantages: Never bored of food, can find new ideas, Disadvantages: Expensive, at the mercy of store selections. The Colorado Trail has an average elevation of over 10,000 feet (3,048 meters), which shouldn’t be taken lightly. Disadvantages: Not versatile, funny smell. The Trail also covers a wide range of elevations and terrain, offering something for hikers of all skill levels. Of the 45 miles in Summit County, there is only one reasonable day hike on the Colorado Trail: a local hiking trail route between southern Breckenridge and Copper Mountain. Continental Divide hikers often comment how easy it is to hike in Colorado because of the great signage. It would be impossible to carry all of the water needed for hiking. The Colorado Trail is a 486 mile backpacking route starting in Denver, Colorado and ending in Durango, Colorado. This small booklet describes each segment with water sources, campsites, and viewpoints. Colorado Trail Hiking: Main Routes and Access Points The Colorado Trail is broken up into 28 segments, each with its own individual entry points at the beginning and end. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from March until October. One of the country’s premier long trails, stretching from Denver (technically, Littleton) to Durango, the Colorado Trail winds its way 486-miles from central to the southwestern corner of Colorado. June 3, 2016 – 16.2 miles. Many tents also sell an optional footprint to protect the floor of the tent. The Databook is a must have for navigation on the CT. If you are hiking the Colorado Trail you will not carry enough food to hike the entire trail. It is basically Google Maps for the Colorado Trail but can be used in airplane mode or without service. Your email address will not be published. The best way to test your gear and your physical ability is to go on training hikes. Section Hiking and shuttle transportation info for The Colorado Trail. Hitting the trail again, I backtracked to Section One of the Colorado Trail and tackled it in two very different days of hiking. Choosing the right backpack is arguably the most important decision in backpacking gear. Laced up my hiking boots and packed up plenty of snacks and water for what I knew was going to be a long, steep, and mostly dry hike. Trail Summary: The Colorado Trail is a 485 mile hike that starts near Denver and ends in Durango, Colorado. Notify me of follow-up comments by email. Disadvantages: Packages can get lost, can get bored of send food, lost food if you have to bail on hiking. Disadvantages: Expensive, non-reusable fuel containers, weight. Colorado Trail: Segment 1 is a 18 mile moderately trafficked point-to-point trail located near Littleton, Colorado that features a river and is rated as difficult. Disadvantages: Labor intensive, requires creativity. The new edition is rumored to be waterproof. Added to the CT in 2012, Collegiate West is a must-hike section that takes hikers through the higher peaks and exposed ridges of the Collegiate Peaks. Sleeping bags are rated by temperature. This trail journal documents my solo thru-hike of The Colorado Trail in August of 2010. The Colorado Trail, one of the nation's premier long-distance hiking trails, spans 500 miles from Denver to Durango, and it's arguably one of Colorado's … This trail is covered with beautiful aspen trees that will turn gold as they die for the season. If you are coming from low elevation or have never done a thru-hike before it is recommended to try a different hike first to make sure you are ready for the CT. For more backpacking ideas, go to our trip page. It uses your smartphone's GPS to keep you on the trail. For more information on water purification visit our Backpacking Water Treatment Guide. The entire 500 miles of The Colorado Trail takes an average of 4 to 6 weeks, hikers can choose to just hike a section for a wonderful 1/2 or full day hike. The segment is mostly through open fields, rolling hills and ends on beautiful Kenosha Pass which is littered with Aspen Trees. Here are the best ways to keep you on the trail. The trail is maintained by the Colorado Trail Foundation which organizes groups of volunteers to work on the trail. Your email address will not be published. You are putting your safety in a stranger's hands and it can be difficult to wrap your head around. Besides the last .1 miles, Long Gulch TH should be accessible to all vehicles but does travel on dirt roads. Anyone can hike the Colorado Trail. From the Rock Creek trailhead, head seven miles west to a secluded camp. There are one-off spots before that point. Collegiate West is an alternate route on The Colorado Trail that follows the existing Continental Divide National Scenic Trail through western side of the Collegiate Peaks. On day two, backtrack 3.4 miles to turn off-trail for a 1,300-foot climb of Zephyr Peak. The average thru-hiker completes the Colorado trail in 5 weeks. Common backpacks seen on the Colorado Trail: Common sleeping bags seen on the Colorado Trail: For more information on choosing hiking footwear visit, Examples: Mountain House, Backpacker's Pantry, Organic. Photo courtesy of J.B. Bissell Adventure 4 Things to Know Before You Segment-Hike the Colorado Trail. According to the Colorado Trail Foundation, trail maintenance in 2020 will not be the standard efforts due to COVID-19. This allows hikers to prepackage meals and supplies and send them ahead of time. New grads to new retirees hike the trail together and so can you. As of 2020, miles 3.5-4.5 have a TON of downed trees which making camping more difficult, but there is a great spot around mile 4.7 where we camped. Point-to-point hikers often shuttle a vehicle ahead to their destination point to avoid having to retrace their steps. One man offers his sage advice on how to tackle the 486-mile Colorado Trail, piece by piece. Many people are intimidated by the thought of hitch hiking. Crypto and Giardia are rare but it is better to be on the safe side and not ruin a great backpacking trip. There are many shelter options (hammocks, tarps, bivys) but the most popular option are freestanding tents. On the other hand, they are restrained to what the grocery store offers. After tackling segment 4 and a bit of 5 in one day, we camped for the night and woke up to colder temperatures and nasty weather. In the Lost Creek Wilderness, the trail tracks below the five highest of the Kenosha Mountains’ 12,000-foot peaks, and it’s snow-free as early as May. As you get closer to Kenosha Pass, camping spots may be harder to come by, not due to options but due to crowds – especially during busier summer months. More Activities & Information Waitlist is available! The Colorado Trail appealed to me because it seemed like it would be doable in the month-long period I had available, and it also provided plenty of opportunities for challenges along the way. After that point, there are ample spots to camp near Rock Creek and mile 8ish. Keep it in a Ziploc bag to keep it from getting wet. The author enjoying a prime section of the Colorado Trail, which overlaps briefly with the Monarch Crest Trail here. Make it a Loop: Colorado Trail Segment 5 is an out and back hike. Activate the SOS function and mountain rescue will be notified of your position. Dogs are also able to use this trail. Rock Creek at mile 7.4 is your best bet for water until you reach the end of the segment where there is a water pump near the campground just off the trail. May brought us warmer than usual weather and allowed for the snow to melt out a bit early. Many hostels and post offices along the Colorado Trail will accept packages for hikers and hold them until they arrive. An uncomfortable backpack mean an uncomfortable trip so choose wisely. The treefall starts around mile 3 and continues through mile 5 or so with some breaks in between. Highlights of Colorado Trail Segment 5. The money required for hiking the CT is an estimation and will be different for everyone’s hiking style. There are many different stove options, each with their own advantages and disadvantages. The Colorado Trail is divided into 33 segments (including the five that make up the Collegiate West alternative route) and each is accessible at the beginning and ending trailheads as well as at other points along the way. After this point, your next sources will not be for 3-5 miles in, but are usually pretty consistent. Camping: While hiking Colorado Trail Segment 5, you will have plenty of options to camp along the way. To estimate how long the trail will take you, ask yourself how many miles are you planning on hiking a day and how many town stops will you make? The CT starts on the right side of the parking area across from the restrooms. The Foundation will update its Facebook on which segments are currently passable. I started on August 1st in Denver and finished in Durango on September 6th. The trail is maintained by the Colorado Trail Foundation which organizes groups of volunteers to work on the trail. This information can be found on packaging but takes time to do the math. They are the backpack, sleeping system, and shelter. By J.B. Bissell • July 24, 2018. Colorado Trail Hiking - Imagine going on a hiking and camping vacation on the Colorado Trail with a light daypack, delicious prepared meals, and all the logistics planned! Many backpackers prefer to not send any packages ahead and simply buy their meals in town. On my thru-hike I resupplied in Frisco, Leadville, Buena Vista, Salida, Creede, and Silverton. Food is one of the heaviest items you can carry while backpacking. Colorado Trail Segment 11 & CW1 Hike Trail Guide, Canyonlands National Park Needles District Trail Guide. Colorado Trail Segment 4 was our favorite of the CT so far, until we hiked segment 5. Required fields are marked *. To protect others from disease, bury human waste 6-8 inches into the ground and at least 200 feet from natural water. The Colorado Trail is divided into 28 segments with an access point at the beginning and end of each. Colorado is a hiker's paradise, and the Colorado Trail will let you enjoy all its beauty to the fullest. Even a day hike on the Colorado Trail is high-level hiking, and extra precautions and information are going to get you through. Make it a Loop: Colorado Trail Segment 5 is an out and back hike. While hiking Colorado Trail Segment 5, enjoy the views of the Sawatch range as you close out your hike as they are a preview of what is to come on future segments. It is the most beautiful and difficult section of the trail as well as the most exposed to weather. Sample a taste of the Colorado Trail on this 160-mile loop that circles the Collegiate Peaks, a collection of picturesque 14ers along the Continental Divide. Colorado Trail Section and Segment Information. Plan ahead and if you are traveling from a location at a lower altitude – if headed east, take a few day rides from Durango to help acclimatise. The mountain bike version detours Wilderness Areas, where mechanized travel is off-limits, and can be done any number of ways: from weekend warrior-ing it a couple segments at a time, to a supported through-ride with a sag vehicle, to bikepacking it unsupported in a single push. There are two ways to get more food and gear to continue hiking: mail drops and in-town resupplies. The Colorado Trail can be a life-changing experience if you let it! If you want to eat a warm meal you will need to bring a stove. Most of the trail lies above 3,000 m or 10,000 feet. Kenosha Pass however has plenty of parking options both along 285 itself and towards the bathrooms I mentioned above. In addition to the Triple Crown, he has also hiked the John Muir Trail and Colorado Trail in his 12,000+ miles of long-distance hiking since 1999. If you purchase a product or service with the links that I provide I may receive a small commission. Many hikers will pack enough food to get them to the next hostel. Additionally, this is one of the most remote sections, thus making the logistics for the support crew more challenging than any other section. It can track your progress with a map that others can see online and has a check-in function to tell family you are safe. This allows hikers to change their meals based on what they see other hikers eating. It assumed that the cheapest beds in hostels were chosen for each town stop. The remote section of trail in Colorado’s Weminuche Wilderness isn’t for the faint of heart: For more than 70 miles through the wilderness, the trail doesn’t dip below 11,000 feet. The route links eight groups of mountains, six National Forests, and six Wilderness Areas in one of the most coveted high … Section (segment) hiking is a great way to see the trail and being able to do the trail a weekend, week or more at a time. The Big 3 refers to the three items that are the most important and will take up the most weight in your back. Advantages: Can be used in most situations, multi-fuel options. The Colorado Trail is a long-distance trail running for 486 miles (782 km) from the mouth of Waterton Canyon southwest of Denver to Durango in Colorado, United States.Its highest point is 13,271 feet (4,045 m) above sea level, and most of the trail is above 10,000 feet (3,000 m). Water is heavy, so it is necessary to balance safety with weight. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from April until September. Another highlight of segment 5 is its moderate terrain. Look for the food with the most energy (calories) per weight (ounces). Colorado Trail Segment 5 is by far the most pretty of the first 5 segments while working through 14.6 miles of hiking and 1,858 feet of elevation gain. The new app makes navigation easy. You can watch the virtual trail guide of Colorado Trail Segment 5 below and check out some pictures from our hike. Road crossings and other resupply options are mentioned within each section. The Colorado Trail Foundation provides great resources on hike preparation. General Trail Information: Colorado Trail Segment 5, Virtual Trail Guide: Colorado Trail Segment 5, Colorado Trail Segment 5 Rating: ★★★★ (⅘  Stars), Estimated Time to Complete: 5-8 Hours One Way, Difficulty: Moderate Difficulty System Explained, Season: Early May – Early December (Expect snow outside of this period). Juno, Jackie and I hit the trail on Saturday morning with the plan to hike Segments 4&5 over two days. All rights reserved. After hiking Segments 1-3 of The Colorado Trail, since they melted early, we decided to tackle a high elevation segment. Most hikers on the Colorado Trail use canister stoves or hike stove-less. He produced The Walkumentary , a trail documentary that covers his 2006 southbound Continental Divide Trail thru-hike and is one of co-hosts of the new hiking podcast, The Trail Show . Research your trail section before you go, paying special attention to the elevation. For 485 miles between Denver and Durango, the Colorado Trail (CT) winds over rocky, 13,000-foot peaks and passes, through wildflower-filled meadows, in and out of dusty mining towns, and past snow-clad vistas as it draws a line through Colorado’s Rocky Mountains. The Colorado Trail is about 480 miles long, from end to end, and it can be hiked either from Denver to Durango or the other way around. Colorado Trail : Segment 8 is a 24.1 mile lightly trafficked point-to-point trail located near Frisco, Colorado that offers the chance to see wildlife and is rated as difficult. Whether you have a few days or just an afternoon, here’s what you need to know to enjoy your adventure along the Divide. The hiking starts off in thick forest, works through a marshy area with beautiful mountains in the distance and ends with miles and miles of hiking through high fields and spanning views. Parking: Long Gulch Trailhead has a small parking areas that can fit 10-20 cars at the most. Best Views: In my opinion, Colorado Trail Segment 5 offers the best views on the first five segments of the trail. The sleeping system consists of a sleeping bag and a pad. The Colorado Trail is divided into 33 segments which includes a choice of two routes in the … The highlights of Colorado Trail segment 5 include the Lost Creek Wilderness, Kenosha Pass and lots of beautiful leaf viewing in the fall. Each contaminate can cause diarrhea, vomiting, and cramps and can be caught by drinking water contaminated with human and animal fecal waste. Trail Summary: The Colorado Trail is a 485 mile hike that starts near Denver and ends in Durango, Colorado. It usually takes thru-hikers 4-6 weeks to complete but it can be completed in sections over several years. *Links included in this description might be affiliate links. This may be an issue for several months unless a good simaritain with a chainsaw comes along. Segment 10 is about 13.6 miles. I finished the trail in 37 days, taking three “zero days.” Day 1 – Waterton Canyon to the South Platte River – Segment 1 Mt Shavano & Tabeguache Peak 14er Trail Guide, 14er Mt Massive Southwest Slopes Trail Guide. Leave a comment below or follow me on Instagram! First, see how much time you have available. Distance: 160 miles Best time to hike: July–August Days on trail: 12–16. CT hikers carried backpacks ranging from 40L to 70L. The trail starts up the gully and shortly after intersects with the CT. Colorado Trail Hiking - Imagine going on a hiking and camping vacation on the Colorado Trail with a light daypack, delicious prepared meals, and all the logistics planned! This device is also great for friends and family. Tents usually are named with a number indicating how many people it will fit. It usually takes thru-hikers 4-6 weeks to complete but it can be completed in sections over several years. Each one is a moderate to exceptional hike in its own right, from 11.4 miles (18.3 kilometers) to 32 miles (51.5 kilometers) in length. On a clear day with good weather, you really can’t go wrong on this segment. As of June 2020, there are a number of downed trees that will delay your hiking on Colorado Trail Segment 5. Mileages are listed from Denver. Although everyone has their own preference, you will never go wrong with the MSR Pocket Rocket. The Colorado trail meander through the following Wilderness Areas: lost Creek, Holy Cross, Mt Massive, Collegiate Peaks, La Garita and the Weminuche. Whether planning to be out for two hours or ten hours, plan to carry essen… If you have ever hiked any section of the Colorado Trail, you know that it’s a fun experience to be on a trail that winds 468 miles through beautiful Colorado. Copyright © Colorado Backpacker. SECTION 7B, 2021 is full. Mick’s Tip: If you are flexible on when you hike this segment, head to this segment in the fall. Fortunately, more bridges and markings are added every summer. Long Gulch does not have any restrooms while Kenosha Pass does on the east side of the pass. Advantages: Flame adjustment, easy to use. These bathrooms are seasonal, along with the road itself. Connecting to present and past CT backpackers is an invaluable source of information. The Colorado Trail is a 486 mile backpacking route starting in Denver, Colorado and ending in Durango, Colorado. Colorado Trail Example Gear List from the Colorado Trail Foundation. Disadvantages: No simmering, dangerous if spilled. You can camp near the start of the segment or continue about 3 miles for your next widespread options. As mentioned, we'll be hiking a little bit of segment 24 from Elk Park to Molas Pass, then segments 25 through 28, heading westward through the San Juan National Forest. End Trailhead (Kenosha Pass): From Morrison, take US285 for 45 miles to reach Kenosha Pass. Examples: Instant potatoes and summer sausage, Knorr pasta sides and tuna packets. Colorado Trail (CT): Collegiate Peaks Loop . Although the SPOT cannot be used for navigation it is great for emergencies. We were able to navigate through this section by adding about 30-45 minutes to our typical pace but also had a leashed dog to help through this section. For more information on water treatment visit the Center for Disease Control. The Colorado Trail is broken down into 28 “Segments.” Rather than diving deeply into each individual segment, I’m going to break down the main sections of the trail according to my own thru-hiking resupply strategy. Hiking the Colorado Trail. A water purification system is necessary to filter water from streams and lakes along the way. The Colorado Trail reaches its highest point here, at 13,200 feet, on the second day of hiking. For more information on recommended tents visit the 5 Best Backpacking Tents of 2017. Day and Section Hiking An adventure along the CDT doesn’t have to take months! As of June 2020, Colorado Trail Segment 5 is victim of serious tree fall across the trail from mile 3-5ish with a section in there that is really hard to navigate around and will kill quite a bit of time until cleared. Although mountain biking is not allowed in the wilderness area (about half of the segment), it is possible to bike the western portion of the trail. Capacity of backpacks are measured in liters. Each type of water purification has its own strengths and weaknesses when treating different types of contaminants. Even with all the negatives, we finished the segment in good spirits and ready for segment 6! Sorry, your blog cannot share posts by email. Hence the season for the Co October 22, 2016 by John Nestler in Bikepacking , Camping , Photography This is an introductory article, the first in a series about bikepacking the Colorado Trail . This section of the Colorado Trail, Kenosha Pass toward Goldhill, is absolutely beautiful with Rocky Mountain views and views of South Park valley area. MEETING DIRECTIONS Please leave a … Comments from other hikers can help you avoid bad campsites or poor water sources. Treatment methods can be combined to increase their effectiveness. Getting Here: Start Trailhead (Long Gulch): Take 285 to Kenosha Pass and drive for 3.2 miles to reach Lost Park Road on your left. Follow this road for 11 miles and bear left (or park at the lower TH) for another .1 miles to reach the small parking area. Thru-Hikers 4-6 weeks to complete section hiking the colorado trail it can be a life-changing experience if you choose hike... The start of the heaviest items you can watch the virtual Trail Guide their! 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Purification visit our backpacking water treatment visit the Center for Disease Control rolling hills and ends in,! But it can be used in airplane mode or without service elevation of over 10,000 (. Were chosen for each day in the backcountry for navigation on the Colorado Trail segment 5 to all.