SAINTS JOHN GHOST TOWN is snowshoeing, nordic skiing, and a hiking gem
Our first hiking trip to Saints John became a springtime snowshoeing adventure. A top spot for snowshoers and backcountry skiers. The kids strapped snowboards to their backpacks, loaded up snowshoes, and lunch, and we headed to Keystone over Loveland Pass. About 5 miles out of Keystone we stopped in the town of Montezuma, a semi-ghost town to begin our family adventure.
The snowshoeing trek out of Montezuma, lead us up a fairly steep incline on a 4×4 road with several switchbacks before reaching Saints John. The Colorado sun, so warm, had us down to snow pants and t-shirts. Stopping along the trail for my “teen” snowboarders to hike up the mountainside, and ride down.
Upon reaching Saints John we found a couple of rooftops barely peeking out of mounds of snow and that’s about it, too much perfect Colorado snow! Was spectacular to witness. Wish I had not forgotten my camera.
Snow is gone and a totally different hiking experience.
Up the switchbacks before reaching Saints John we encountered deer, abundant wildflowers, and beautiful dense forest on each side of us. A trickle of water runs down the side of the trail, with several Colorado dreamy dispersed camping spots hidden deep in the pines. Do we really have to go home?
Coming into Saints John was surprising. It was obvious a few cabins had inhabitants for the summer. Not much left from long ago to explore, but exhilarating nonetheless.
A fun read on Colorado history: “Colorado Ghost Towns, Hauntings, Treasure Tales, and other BS”
Remnants of an old mill were scattered about, with several cabins dating back to the 1860s mixed in. Sweeping views of some of the most scenic terrain I have seen in Summit County. Beautiful wildflowers sprinkled everywhere.
The trail continues on to the historical Wild Irishman Mine to add to a longer day hike.
Our day felt pretty remote. We did not encounter anyone. Let someone know where you’re going before heading out.
It’s a high-altitude trail and dehydration plus fickle weather is always something to consider. For a look at Practical gear that we love at Crazy About Colorado and have in our backpacks on every hike. > CLICK HERE
Montezuma to Saints John ghost town, approx: 3.2 miles out and back
Starting elevation: 10,302 ft.
Can continue to Wild Irishman Mine, 12,000 ft
Open: snowmobiles, all terrain vehicles
White River National Forest
History of Saints John > CLICK HERE
Contact Dillon Ranger District for the latest trail conditions, weather, and dispersed camping guidelines.
Start from the town of Montezuma and hike up CR 275 to reach Saints John and Mines.
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