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Hiking & Walking: Colorado > San Juan National Forest > Columbine Ranger District

Quick Facts

Goulding Creek Trail

Beginning Elevation: 7.840 Feet (2.4 Meters)
Difficulty: More Difficult
Ending Elevation: 10,080 Feet (3142.1 Meters)
Length, One-way: 2.7 Miles (4.5 Kilometers)
Trail Number: 517
Usage: Moderate
USGS Maps: Electra Lake

Satellite and Topo Map

General Description

This trail provides access to the Pinkerton-Flagstaff Trail and also to the eastern half of Hermosa Creek. The trail traverses up several steep switchbacks for the first mile and a half and then levels out. It continues through some open meadows full of native flora and fauna and proceeds slightly uphill through aspen groves to a cabin near the head of the Pinkerton-Flagstaff Trail.

Directions from Durango, Colorado: Travel approximately 17 miles north of Durango on U.S. Highway 550. 1/4 mile past the Hermosa Cliff Fire Station there is a dirt road and a sign marking the head of a trail. Follow the dirt road south for 100 yards and park next to the old, abandoned car. There should be 4-5 parking space available.

Seasonal Information:
Normally Accessible: Memorial Day Weekend through Labor Day Weekend .

Current Conditions & Trip Reports

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Time of Day: varies
Length of Time: couple hours
Difficulty: Moderate
Number of People Encountered: 0-10 ppl
Recommend to a Friend: Highly
Report: It's very steep and has many switchbacks. Nice views east overlooking Tamarron. It goes up through the woods then you have to go through one of the weirdest cow gates I have ever seen and wander in and out of the woods through high meadows. It's very beautiful. You eventually come to an old cabin, then the trail goes on up a hill and meets the Pinkerton Flagstaff trail. If you want to get back to your car, you need to go back the way you came, which makes it a 6 mile hike, not the 3 mentioned above.
Conditions: Snow in May. Mud in May and June.
Water Availability: You are right next to the creek up in the meadow, but there may be cows wandering around. I, personally, would not drink from that creek.
Recommended Clothing: Take rain gear. May get chilly up top.

Recreation Opportunities
Activity Remarks On Site
ICON Hiking & Walking Goulding Creek Trail

Related Activities
Dutch Creek Trail - This trail follows a 10,000 foot ridge line for the first few miles which give a panoramic view of the La Platas and Needle Mountains.

Jones Creek Trail - This trail provides a variety of sights in a fairly short distance, including beautiful views of La Plata through the aspen trees. The meadows near the top offer nice campsites and food for horses with easy access to the creek.

More Information

Visitor Information:

Durango Area Chamber Resort Association, 111 South Camino Del Rio , Durango, CO, 81301, Phone: 800-463-8726, Fax: 970-385-7884, durango@frontier.net


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