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Hiking & Walking: Colorado > White River National Forest > Aspen Ranger District

Quick Facts

Difficult Creek Trail

Difficulty: Moderate
Elevation Gain: 1,340 Feet (417.7 Meters)
High Point: 9,500 Feet (2895.6 Meters)
Length: 2.4 Miles (3.9 Kilometers)
Pets: Yes - Leash required
Recommended Season: Summer to Fall
Trail Number: 2196
Usage: Moderate
Vehicle Accessibility: Passenger Vehicle


Outfitters and Guides



Satellite and Topo Map




General Description

This is an enjoyable day hike through a variety of forest environments. It's a convenient hike for campers at Difficult Campground. The trail leads through oak and ponderosa pine to the Roaring Fork River where it crosses a bridge and begins a gradual ascent. After a broad sagebrush flat, the trail reaches Difficult Creek about 1/2 mile from the trailhead. The trail continues through a pine and fir forest crossing a side stream, then entering a rocky area and starting a steep ascent. At about 2-1/2 miles, 4 old cabins can be seen, the maintained trail ends here. The unmaintained trail is covered with boulders and fallen trees. Beyond this point the wilderness is classified as pristine. Users are expected to use orienteering and map reading skills.

Directions from Aspen: Drive 5 miles southeast of the Aspen Ranger District Office on Hwy. 82 and turn right into Difficult Campground. Travel 0.6 mile and park in the picnic area on the right. The trailhead is in the left corner of the lot.

Seasonal Information:
Normally Accessible: Memorial Day Weekend through September (NOTE: Trail may be impassible at high elevations due to snow Early in the season.) .



Current Conditions & Trip Reports
Winter Conditions. Beware of avalanche danger and hypothermia. Updated: 2002-12-23 14:36:00.0


Add your own trip Report! Newly re-released feature. One of the most popular features on Wildernet, trip reports allow you to share your experiences with others. This is an invaluable resource for determining what to expect on your outdoor adventure, so please participate! To prevent spamming, you must be a registered user of Wildernet in order to submit a trip report

Filed By: Brian Anderson (Prescott Valley, AZ)
Time of Day: early morn'
Length of Time: 2.5 days
Difficulty: Hard
Number of People Encountered: 50+ ppl
Recommend to a Friend: Highly
Report: So like, I was trippin the whole time. Trees spoke, the earth shook, etc.
Conditions: The sound the sun made when it shined through the trees was nasty.
Water Availability: Beer.
Recommended Clothing: I went naked.
Suggested Accessories: Glowsticks.

Filed By: EL (Denver, CO)
Time of Day: 11:00am
Length of Time: 4 hours (took time)
Difficulty: Easy
Number of People Encountered: 11-25 ppl
Recommend to a Friend: Highly
Report: Trail goes through woods for majority of length but does contain some nice views of the valley. An easy hike with some moderate inclines that could be a good prelude to a short 14er.
Conditions: Drought year...so every part was dry. Even several runoff washouts were dry.
Water Availability: Bring at least 2 quarts...trip can be longer than you think. If you have a filter there are several water sources along the way.
Recommended Clothing: It was warm...but because of the tree cover it can get cool the farther you go due to elevation increase.
Suggested Accessories: I usually hike with poles but this hike was easy enough where they really weren't needed.

Difficulty: Moderate
Number of People Encountered: 0-10 ppl
Recommend to a Friend: Highly
Report: Great winter snowshoe hike. Lots of people snowshoe here so the trail stays well-packed and is easy to follow as a result. Must park at entrance as the campground is not plowed in the winter.

Difficulty: Moderate
Number of People Encountered: 11-25 ppl
Recommend to a Friend: Neutral
Report: Flooding has now subsided and trail is accessible and dry. The Trailbook.

Difficulty: Easy
Number of People Encountered: 0-10 ppl
Recommend to a Friend: Not Recommended
Report: Unable to access bridge across the Roaring Fork River because of localized flooding.



Recreation Opportunities
Activity Remarks On Site
ICON Cross-country Skiing Difficult Trail
Yes
ICON Hiking & Walking Difficult Creek Trail
Yes
ICON Snowshoeing Difficult Trail
Yes



Related Activities
Difficult Campground - Difficult Campground is located five miles southeast of Aspen on Highway 82. It has 47 sites with limited spurs to accommodate trailers up to 40'.



More Information

Visitor Information:

Aspen Chamber Resort Association, 425 Rio Grande Pl. , Aspen, CO, 81611, Phone: 970-925-1940

Hickory House, 730 W. Main St. , Aspen, CO, 81611, Phone: 970-925-2313

Annabelle Inn, 232 W. Main Street , Aspen, Colorado, 81611, Phone: 877-266-2466, Fax: 970-925-3328, info@annabelleinn.com

Aspen Alps, 700 Ute Ave. , Aspen, Colorado, 81611, Phone: 877-711-0522, Fax: 970-920-2522

Aspen Meadows Resort, 845 Meadows Road , Aspen, Colorado, 81611, Phone: 800-452-4240 or 800-452-4240

Aspen Mountain Lodge, 311 West Main Street , Aspen, Colorado, 81611, Phone: 970-925-7650 or 800-362-7736, Fax: 970-925-5744, aml@aspenmountainlodge.com

Aspen Square Condominium Hotel, 617 East Cooper Street , Aspen, Colorado, 81611, Phone: 970-925-1000 or 800-470-0530

Hotel Aspen, 110 Main Street , Aspen, Colorado, 81611, Phone: 888-738-8492, info@hotelaspen.com

Hotel Durant, 122 East Durant , Aspen, Colorado, 81611, Phone: 877-438-7268 or 970-925-8500, Fax: 970-925-8789

Hotel Jerome, 330 East Main Street , Aspen, Colorado, 81611, Phone: 877-916-5430 , Fax: 970-920-2050, jerome.info@aubergeresorts.com

Independence Square Hotel/Frias Properties, 404 S. Galena Street , Aspen, Colorado, 81611, Phone: 800-542-7736, Fax: 970-925-2006

Inn at Aspen/Aspen Administrative Office, 38750 Highway 82 , Aspen, Colorado, 81611, Phone: 970-925-1500 or 844-997-8727, aspeninfo@wynvr.com

Limelight Hotel, 355 S. Monarch Street , Aspen, Colorado, 81611, Phone: 855-925-3025 or 970-925-3025, Fax: 970-925-5120, info@limelighthotel.com

Molly Gibson Lodge, 101 West Main Street , Aspen, Colorado, 81611, Phone: 970-925-3434 or 888-271-2304, Fax: 970-925-2582, info@mollygibson.com

Mountain Chalet Aspen, 333 East Durant Avenue , Aspen, Colorado, 81611, Phone: 970-925-7797, Fax: 888-925-7798, res@mca.travel

Residence Hotel, 305 S Galena St. , Aspen, Colorado, 81611, Phone: 970-315-2977, reservations@aspenresidence.com

Residences at the Little Nell, 675 E. Durant Ave. , Aspen, Colorado, 81611, Phone: 855-420-9009 or (970) 920-4600, STAY@THELITTLENELL.COM

Sky Hotel, 709 E. Durant Avenue , Aspen, Colorado, 81611, Phone: 970-925-6760 or 800-882-2582, Fax: 970-925-6778

Snow Queen Lodge, 124 E. Cooper Ave , Aspen, Colorado, 81623, Phone: 970-925-8455, Fax: 970-925-7391, sqlodge@rof.net

St. Moritz Lodge & Condominiums , 334 W. Hyman Avenue , Aspen, Colorado, 81611, Phone: 970-925-3220 or 800-817-2069, Fax: 970-920-4032, info@stmoritzlodge.com

The Crestwood Condominiums, 400 Wood Road , Snowmass Village, Colorado, 81615, Phone: 970-923-2450 or 800-356-5949, res@thecrestwood.com

The Gant, 610 S W End Ave , Aspen, Colorado, 81611, Phone: 970-925-5000, Fax: 970-925-6891

The Innsbruck, 233 W. Main St. , Aspen, colorado, 81611, Phone: 866-925-2980

The Little Nell Hotel, 675 E. Durant Ave. , Aspen, Colorado, 81611, Phone: 970-920-4600, Concierge@thelittlenell.com

Tyrolean Lodge, 200 West Main Street , Aspen, Colorado, 81611, Phone: 970-925-4595 or 888-220-3809, Fax: 970-925-4598, stay@tyroleanlodge.com

Asie, 413 Main St. , Aspen, Colorado, 81623, Phone: 970-920-9988

Brexi Brasserie, 411 S. Monarch St. , Aspen, Colorado, 81611, Phone: 970-925-2838, Fax: 970-429-4348

Gwyn's High Alpine Restaurant, P.O. Box 6400 , Snowmass Village, Colorado, 81615, Phone: 970-923-5188

Grateful Deli, 223 E. Main Street , Aspen, Colorado, 81611, Phone: 970-925-6647

New York Pizza, 409 E. Hyman Ave , Aspen, Colorado, 81611, Phone: 970-920-3088

Sam's Smokehouse, On Mountain , Snowmass Mountain, Colorado, 81615, Phone: 970-923-8686

Stew Pot, 62 Elbert Lane , Snowmass Village, Colorado, 81615, Phone: 970-923-2263

Taster's Aspen, 455 Rio Grande Pl , Aspen, Colorado, 81611, Phone: 970-925-1952

Links to other sites:
Forest Conservancy - Current Information from Local Volunteers: Closings and Conditions

Forest Conservancy - Current Information from Local Volunteers: Closings and Conditions

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Local Lodging

Stay at the Aspen Square Hotel
Stay at the Aspen Square Hotel



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