Platte River Trail is the perfect get outside and getaway trail without the crowds.
A little off the beaten path, yet anyone can access it. We found it in late January with no one about. It felt like we were miles from anywhere.
Today is one of those high wind warning days that keep everyone indoors, yet we lucked out and found Platte River Trail, a spot of paradise that had only a slight breeze.
Surprised, yet exceedingly happy!
Not knowing what to expect we took off, backpack and snack ready and began hiking up a steady incline, soon finding areas of the trail with spots of snow.
The trail went in and out of rocks and trees until we were hiking well above the Platte River, yet still following along with it around the mountain.
The trail leveled off and meandered through areas of snowpack.
The deeper we hiked in, the more rocks, boulders and deep snow covered areas we found.
Really got quite beautiful and so quiet. No bird song, no people, just a slight breeze.
Every now and then, we found beautiful views when looking across the Platte River which would have us stopping and taking it all in.
Suddenly we were getting much deeper into the forest and finding much deeper snow. We trudged along for awhile longer by following previous hiker footsteps.
Previous hiker tracks stopped and the blue markers which had been our trail markers on the trees had disappeared. Shucks, lost the trail.
Snow on each side of us is about 2-3 ft deep and there isn’t any sign of the trail leading down to the Platte River. (the highlight at the end of the hike).
Even if we’d had our snowshoes we would not have ventured off trail and simply tried our luck at finding the river.
Turning around and taking our time on the hike back we found more scenic areas and even ran into a couple people.
A view of the frozen Platte River before us and we knew we’d come back to the Trailhead.
This is a trail we will do again! Not all trails would we do that but this one had its own special charm and is off the beaten path.
Plus, we need to finish it…. when the snow melts!
LOCATED: from the town of Lake George on Hwy 24, turn north onto CR 77 (Tarryall Rd) for one mile to Forest Rd 112. Turn right and go past Happy Meadows Campground for about a mile. Trailhead is on your left.
6.6 miles out and back
Trail ends at the South Platte River – relax, enjoy
Trail # 654
Toilet & water at Happy Meadow Campground when open
Mostly for hiking and mountain biking
Dogs allowed on leash
More information contact: South Park Ranger District, 719-836-2031
More amazing Colorado day hikes with spectacular settings…
Inter-Laken Trail, Hike along the shoreline of Twin Lakes leading to an early 1900’s Colorado Resort.
Mohawk Lakes Trail, Breckenridge, CO, cascading waterfall, abandoned cabins set in an exquisite alpine setting make this hike popular.
North Backbone Trail, Salida, CO has astonishing views of The Collegiate Peaks.
A GENTILE REMINDER: Venturing off trails damages vegetation, leads to erosion and impacts wildlife.
So many trails in Colorado from mild to wild … Happy Trails!