Willow Creek Trail is located at Willowbrook Trailhead which has a mega of trail options. From a full day hiking to Willow Lakes at 12,000+’ or an easy day outside by doing a loop hike.

Which we did by mistake. We started for Willow Lakes but took a wrong turn and ended up doing a loop on more gentle terrain yet packed full of adventure.


Note: Many of the links are affiliate links which means I receive a very small commission (at no added cost to you).


It’s early morning, it’s chilly, it’s late October in the high country, and one of my favorite months to hike. The air is crisp and feels like a breath of fresh air as it hits my face. The smells of late fall still linger which will only be the case for a short time ahead. Winter is approaching.



Heading to the right at the start of the trailhead and soon taking a left we are on our way. It wasn’t long until we were hiking through a beautiful forest on a fairly steep incline. Nothing too strenuous but very icy. We can hear Willow Creek burbling alongside us and it’s surprisingly swift for late fall.



Coming to an intersection on the trail and not really knowing where to go. We made the wrong turn here at this log bridge. (photo above). Possibly we just wanted to cross it since it was such a pretty area but don’t cross it if wanting to head to Willow Lakes. Go straight and stay on Willow Creek Trail.

We turned here and are now on Gore Range Trail.



Coming out of the deeply forested trail of ice and snow and heading into the sunshine we finally realize we took a wrong turn.

Before every hike, I download a map of our intended hike before we leave from my AllTrails App. It has been extremely beneficial for staying on the trail or finding your way back if off-trail. I should have checked it before turning but after realizing my mistake I did use it to find another way to go which is the loop hike we did. (I do not receive any form of commission for AllTrails, I just really love having it).




Love views and we are having them in all directions. The views looking west of the Gore Range Mountains are spectacular with their snow-capped peaks.




We hiked up and down and in and out of views on a single path of fairly easy terrain for quite a while. It’s peaceful and quiet. You can hear the wind whispering in the trees. A lovely sound.

Coming to another intersection we turned left onto Mesa Cortina Trail to continue on our loop.





Not long and we are turning left onto South Willow Creek Trail. I have to admit this was one of my favorite parts of our loop hike. More adventurous as we hiked narrow paths deep in the canyon right next to the Creek which was starting to freeze.

> CLICK HERE for a look at practical gear that we have in our backpacks on every hike



It’s colder close to the creek but super scenic. Must be a favorite summer spot with all the shade and pools of water to dip your feet.





Back up into the sunshine and those amazing views looking Northwest now. Beautiful!



This area is known to be very busy yet in late October we saw very few hikers.

This is the perfect 1/2 day adventure for an enjoyable day outside! If looking for slight elevation gains, a mixture of scenic areas, and less effort, this is it.

NOTE: Rocky sections, roots, narrow paths, extremely icy in spots during late fall/late spring, and snowpack in winter.

5-mile loop

Rated: moderate

Limited Parking

Busy area, come early or late

Nearest Town: Silverthorne, CO

Dillon Ranger District

NOTE: Willowbrook Trailhead parking is limited. Overflow parking is 1.1 miles from the trailhead at the beginning of the subdivision. Parking is not allowed near the trailhead or anywhere in the neighborhood.




Mohawk Lakes Trail, Colorado’s Best Hike

Mayflower Gulch, a Stunning Hike

North Ten Mile Creek Trail, an Alpine Jewel!

Connect with me on Instagram! I enjoy hanging out there and leaving tidbits of trails I’ve hiked in Colorado. Follow me and say hi – send me a message! Follow other hikers and be inspired.



Note: Many of the links are affiliate links which means I receive a very small commission (at no added cost to you).