Summer Hiking

Favorite Hiking Trails

Trail Description and Locations

Favorite Hiking Trails

Winter Park and Fraser Trail Guides

Winter Park, Colorado has over 600 miles of hiking trails to discover on foot. From family-friendly hikes to more strenuous longer distance excursions, we have something for everyone.  Use our guide to our favorite hikes in and around Winter Park. Download the list of trails and descriptions.

MAPS & TRAIL TIPS: For updates on trail status, use COTREX (a mobile and desktop application for a statewide comprehensive and interactive trail map) to always have your maps with you. Stop by the Information Center in downtown Winter Park for hard-copy maps and additional information. 

Fraser River Trail – South (Easy)

Distance: 5 miles round trip
Elevation: 8,280’

Trailhead Location: Downtown Winter Park or Winter Park Resort. Park at the Winter Park Information Center and follow the sidewalk on the east side of US Highway 40 south towards Vasquez Road. Continue southon the sidewalk past the Vasquez  stoplight to Beaver Village Lodge. At the Lodge, the trail begins to descend away from US Highway 40 into the pine forest. Follow the trail and emerge at old town Winter Park on Trademark Drive. From Winter Park Resort, follow Winter Park Drive north into old town Winter Park and turn left on Old Town Drive. Veer right onto the Fraser River Trail at the Trademark Drive intersection. Follow the trail towards
downtown Winter Park.

Trail Description: A stretch from downtown Winter Park to Winter Park Resort. The trail parallels the pond at Beaver Village, winds through Idlewild campground, crosses beneath US Highway 40 and follows the Fraser River. This is the easiest trail in the area with the least amount of physical exertion. The trail is very scenic along the river and a slight uphill incline from downtown to the resort.

Second Creek / Broome Hut (Moderate due to elevation gain)

Distance: 5 miles round trip
Elevation: Trailhead 10,569’ / Hut 11,350’

Trailhead Location: From the Winter Park Information Center, follow US Highway 40 south and up the eastern side of Berthoud Pass. A turnout at mile marker 240 along with a large orange avalanche warning sign marks the trailhead.

Trail Description: The Second Creek Trail climbs 700’ in just one mile from to the Broome Hut, which overlooks an idyllic alpine basin. Begin along the main trail following the creek. Stay on the main trail until the cirque and eventually the hut become visible. A portion of the hut is available for day use. The Second Creek trail is popular year-round. To continue to the top of the Continental Divide, follow the trail around the right of the hut. The trail is defined for the first 1.5 miles as it crosses Second Creek and through willows, but then becomes faint as it enters the alpine tundra. Watch for rock piles that delineate the trail to the summit. From the top there are great views to the north of Parsenn Bowl, and to the east of Parry and James Peaks and the Continental Divide.

Discovery Trail / Jim Creek Trail (Easy to Moderate)

Hiking Jim Creek Trail in Winter Park, Colorado
DIscovery / Jim Creek Trail

Distance: 1.5 – 7 miles round trip
Elevation: Trailhead 9,220’ / 1,225’ gain

Trailhead Location: From the Winter Park Information Center, follow US highway 40 south toward Winter Park Resort. Turn left at the 3rd stoplight and park at the Bonfils Stanton Outdoor Center directly across from Winter Park Resort entrance.

Trail Description: The first section begins with a boardwalk, and is the 1.5 mile Discovery Trail. At the campground, stay to the left of the picnic pavilion and an old road will be on the right, which parallels the trail. Shortly you will come to FS128. To follow the Discovery loop, veer to the left. For Jim Creek Trail, cross the road to the right of a water diversion and follow the trail. The Discovery Trail is handicap accessible, while the Jim Creek Trail is slightly more strenuous.

Creekside / Flume Loop (Easy)

Hiking trails in Winter Park, Colorado
Creekside / FLume Loop

Distance: 5 miles round trip
Elevation: 9,000’

Trailhead Location: From the Winter Park Information Center, follow US Highway 40 north to the Fraser Valley Center traffic light and turn left onto CR72. Turn right on CR721 (Fraser Parkway) and follow to the “T” intersection. Turn left onto CR73. Continue toward the St. Louis Creek campground and park.

Trail Description: Begin at St. Louis Creek campground. The trailhead for Creekside is on the north side of the parking area. If you have gone into the campground you have gone too far. Creekside will end on FS road 159. Turn left and look for Flume trail slightly uphill and on your left. Enter Flume, which is a heavily wooded forest and at times gives way to open meadows. The Flume trail gets its name from an old logging flume, which it parallels. The trail will go through some aspens before reaching the scenic overlook bench. Take time to enjoy the view of Byers Peak and St. Louis Creek. Shortly after the scenic overlook is a trail junction. Straight ahead is Chainsaw, turn left and the trail will take you across St. Louis Creek. Turn left after the bridge and follow an old road back to the campground. 

Blue Sky/Little Vasquez (Easy)

Distance: 4 miles round trip
Elevation: 9,200’

Trailhead Location: From the Winter Park Information Center turn left onto US Highway 40. At the first stoplight (Vasquez Rd), turn right. Follow Vasquez up and over the railroad tracks. At the first stop sign (Arapaho Rd), turn left. Follow Arapaho up through the residential neighborhood and park where the road turns to dirt.

Trail Description: Start up the road (Little Vasquez) until you see the sign for Blue Sky on the right. Follow the Blue Sky trail over a bridge and up. At the top of Blue Sky turn left on the road and continue up. The top of the climb is on Tunnel Hill Rd. You will pass Chickadee on your left but continue down (if you want a very challenging descent take Chickadee and it will meet back up with Little Vasquez at the bottom). Your next intersection will be Little Vasquez. Follow Little Vasquez back down to the parking area.

Deadhorse Loop Trail (Easy to Moderate)

Distance: 5 miles round trip
Elevation: 9,000’

Trailhead Location: From the Winter Park Information Center, follow US Highway 40 north to the Fraser Valley Center traffic light and turn left onto CR72. Turn right on CR721 (Fraser Parkway) and follow to the “T” intersection. Turn left onto CR73. Drive approximately 3.8 miles past the rodeo grounds. You will pass the St. Louis Creek Campground and FS159 on your left. Look for the Deadhorse Trailhead sign and follow toward the parking lot.

Trail Description: At the trailhead, follow the trail to the right up the steeper, narrower Spruce (Tipperary) creek side of the trail. The Deadhorse portion of the loop is wider and more gradual of a decline. This trail winds through a lodgepole forest adjacent to the Byers Peak Wilderness.

Elk Meadow Trail (Easy)

Distance: 2.5 miles round trip
Elevation: 9,000’

Trailhead Location: From the Winter Park Information Center, follow US Highway 40 north to the Fraser Valley Center traffic light and turn left onto CR72. Follow CR72 under the railroad tracks and up the hill, past the Fraser Tubing Hill until you come to the Forest Service gate.

Trail Description: Park at the gate and start up the hill. Less than a quarter of a mile up, you will see the Elk Meadow Trail on the left. Follow the trail through the woods and down through a meadow. Go over the bridges and you will start to climb again. The trail ends at a T intersection with D2. Turn right on D2 and climb back up to the road FS158. Enjoy the downhill on FS158 back to the Forest Service gates and the parking lot.

Yankee Doodle (Intermediate)

Distance: 5 miles round trip
Elevation: 8,800’

Trailhead Location: Start behind the Winter Park Information Center, go right from parking lot and follow Ski Idlewild Rd to the dead end. The trailhead is on the right.

Trail Description: Once at the trailhead, follow the contour of the ridge, starting out steep, then mellowing out and becoming steep again as you navigate three sets of rocky switch backs. Then enter sections of dense, as the trail meanders up the hill, eventually coming to an intersection with the Serendipity trail to your left, which takes you into Idlewild. Once at the top, you will be able to see panoramic views of the Winter Park & Fraser Valley. If you wish to add on to the trail, cross the road (Corona Pass road) and continue up Yankee Doodle to FS149, which brings the length to around 5 miles. Turn to the right and eventually find Broken Thumb trail on your left. Or take a left and cross the road to ascend up the Arrow trail, which contours and then drops down to the Southfork Trail in Idlewild.

Columbine Lake (Intermediate)

Distance: 7 Miles round trip
Elevation: 10,000'

Trailhead Location: From the Winter Park Information Center, follow US Highway 40 north toward CO Highway 83. Drive up a winding dirt road to the Junco Lake Trailhead via CR 84 / FS129. The trailhead is located in the Arapaho National Recreation Area and costs $5 per motor vehicle to access. 

Trail Description: The trail starts out level and gains elevation as the trail turns to rocks. Once you pass remnants of an old cabin, the trail evens out into a natural dirt path. In addition to Columbine Lake, the trail features creeks, meadows, forest, and mountain views. As the lake nears, follow the trail past large boulders and several small meadows. Continue through an area of small ponds to where the trail reaches the lake. 

Second Creek Hike Near Winter Park

Hiking Roaring Fork near Winter Park