Roaring Fork Trail
Roaring Fork Trail begins at the trailhead near the Roaring Fork Loop of the
Arapaho Bay Campground at an elevation of 8,240 and climbs to an elevation
of 11,200 feet. Three sections of the trail are quite steep. The trail travels
on the level for a short distance to a point where it splits the Knight Ridge
Trail. The Roaring Fork Trail goes to the right and shortly enters the wilderness
where it starts to climb the steep terrain east of Lake Granby. The trail
is very steep, making four switchbacks as it heads toward the Roaring Fork
drainage. After about 15 - 20 minutes of hiking it gets easier as it approaches
Roaring Fork Creek. The trail crosses the creek over a log bridge where it
becomes a much more gentle climb. It is a pleasant and enjoyable walk along
the creek to its junction with Watanga Creek. An old trail to Watanga Lake
that is no longer maintained heads to the left. It takes about an hour and
a half to get to this point.
trail travels in a southeasterly arc until it reaches a saddle at the base
of Mount Irving Hale. The majority of this section of the trail is very steep.
Itís about 40 minutes of tough hiking before the trail levels off some on
its approach to the saddle. The views from this point are quite breathtaking.
the saddle the trail makes a steep descent into Hell Canyon as it heads toward
Stone Lake. There are a lot of deadfall (downed trees) across the trail making
it difficult to follow at times. It is also steep and narrow in places making
it unsuitable for livestock. Once down to the lower portion of the canyon,
the trail levels off and travels through a series of wet meadows on its way
to Stone Lake. It can be faint in some places in the meadows. Stone Lake and
Upper Lake above it sit in a deep valley surrounded by magnificent peaks and
open wet meadows. There are scattered spruce trees throughout the area. There
isnít much of a trail between the lakes. You just have to pick your way up
through the rocks a short distance to get to Upper Lake.
day hiking, campfires, and livestock are all permitted in this travel zone
of the Indian Peaks Wilderness. Stone Lake and Upper Lake offer fishing for
cutthroat trout. This trail is somewhat difficult and receives moderate use.
||6.7 miles (10.8 kilometers)
||8,274' - 11,208'
||June 1 - Sept 30
||Moderate - Difficult
||Shadow Mountain, Isolation Peak
||Pets must be on a leash
|Suitable for mountain bikes:
||No (not permitted in wilderness)
|Suitable for horses:
Other Nearby Resources:
Highway 34 north from Granby to the entrance of the Arapaho National Recreation
Area. Travel east on Forest Road 125 for about 10 miles to the Arapaho Bay Campground.
Turn left and go about a half mile to the trailhead on the right.
Copyright © 1999-2003 Resource Analysis
All rights reserved