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Hiking & Walking: Colorado > Grand Mesa, Uncompahgre and Gunnison National Forests > Ouray Ranger District

Quick Facts

Cutler Creek Trail

Beginning Elevation: 8,480 Feet (2643.4 Meters)
Difficulty: Moderate
Elevation Gain: 1,900 Feet (592.3 Meters)
Ending Elevation: 10,380 Feet (3235.7 Meters) North Fork
Length: 4.4 Miles (7.33 Kilometers) using the North Fork
Length: 2.9 Miles (4.83 Kilometers) using the South Fork
Other Elevation: 11,320 Feet (3528.7 Meters) elevation on the south fork
Recommended Season: Summer to Fall
Trail Number: 217
Usage: Light
USGS Maps: Ouray




Satellite and Topo Map




General Description

Cutler Creek is a rather steep pair of trails climbing to the mountainous ridge separating the Cow Creek and Uncompahgre River drainages. On the ridge the two forks tie into the Baldy Trail # 216.

General condition of the trail is fair to good. The primary use is for hunter access during the fall big game season. Riding time is one to two days to make the loop trip around the Baldy Trail.

Most portions of the trail are within the Big Blue Wilderness. Motorized vehicles are prohibited.

The two forks of the Cutler Creek are part of a system of trails crisscrossing the high mountain ridge northeast of Ouray. Combined with the Baldy Trail # 216 or other non-system trails, many loop trips may be taken.

From the Cutler Creek crossing, the south fork section trail leads about one mile to a flat grassy area. Just to the east the trail forks. The right fork is the main trail which climbs 1.9 miles steeply to tie into the Baldy Trail just north of the upper Dexter Creek area. The left fork, known as the Cow Camp Cut-off, ties into the Baldy trail one mile north of the right fork.

The north fork of Cutler Creek Trail may be found by following the road past Thistle Park. The road crosses Cutler Creek and heads north. Follow the road about 1/4 mile to where the road turns to the west. The trail begins on the curve. Locally, the North Fork is known as the zigzag Trail because of the switch backs along the first mile of the trail. Total length of the North Fork is 4.4 miles.

Few level camp sites with water can be found. Good horse feed is available, however. Best camping sites are on top of the ridge along the Baldy Trail.

Directions from Ouray: Take U.S. Highway 550 North for two miles and turn right on Cutler-Dexter Creek Road. At the road junction near Lake Lenore, turn left on Cutler Creek Road #872. Follow the road 2.3 miles past Thistle Park. The South Fork of Cutler Creek Trail begins to the right after crossing a creek. Continue .2 miles to North Fork Trail head.

Directions from Ouray: Take U.S. Highway 550 North for two miles and turn right on Cutler-Dexter Creek Road. At the road junction near Lake Lenore, turn left on Cutler Creek Road # 872. Follow the road 2.3 miles past Thistle Park. The South Fork of Cutler Creek Trail begins to the right after crossing a creek. Continue .2 miles to North Fork Trail head.



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Recreation Opportunities
Activity Remarks On Site
ICON Hiking & Walking Cutler Creek Trail
Yes
ICON Horseback Riding



More Information

Visitor Information:

Montrose County Chamber of Commerce, 550 N Townsend , Montrose, CO, 81401, Phone: 800-873-0244

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