#1: Where the trail begins parking is available at the beginning of forest access road between Three Elk and Four Elk developments. Those traveling in four-wheel drive vehicles may continue one mile to the road closure. Continue up the old road one mile to the Colorado trail. Hike one mile south on the Colorado trail to Three Elk trail. Hike west on Three Elk to Columbia Basin 2.5 miles. Climb northwest .5 miles up the gully to the ridge and continue .5 miles southwest to Mt. Columbia summit.
No well-defined or marked trail exists above tree line on this route.
Directions from Leadville: #1: From Leadville travel south on U.S. highway 24 for 26.5 miles, drive west into the Four Elk development and follow the sign to the forest access road. Please respect private property.
Directions from Leadville: #2: From Leadville, travel south 24 miles on U.S. highway 24 to wilderness boundary, travel southwest 3.3 miles to forest road 386.
May through September
(NOTE: Snow may obstruct the trail at high elevations during the Spring, Summer and Fall months.)