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

Quick Facts

Spring Cave Trail

Beginning Elevation: 7,600 Feet (2369.1 Meters)
Difficulty: Moderate
Elevation Gain: 2,000 Feet (623.4 Meters)
Ending Elevation: 9,600 Feet (2992.5 Meters)
Length: 3.5 Miles (5.83 Kilometers)
Trail Number: 1834
Usage: Heavy

Satellite and Topo Map

General Description

Spring Cave waterfall
Copyright: - US Forest Service
Spring Cave waterfall
The trail starts out crossing the South Fork of the White River by bridge. It then travels through a stand of blue spruce changing to aspen and finally oak brush as it starts climbing toward Spring Cave. The trail makes several switchbacks before leveling the last 1/8 mile to Spring Cave.

The Cliff Lake Trail starts out 100 yards or so before Spring Cave, angling back to the right. It climbs quickly to a sagebrush covered bench and follows it for 1/4 mile before starting up through stands of timber alternating between spruce-fir and aspen. The trail continues about three miles through this same type terrain until reaching Cliff Lake. Occasional views of South Fork Canyon to the east are available.

Directions from Meeker: Cliff Lake and Spring Cave Trails are located 29 miles east of Meeker. Take State Highway 13 east out of Meeker for one mile; turn right on County Road 8 for 18 miles to the South Fork Road (County Road 10) Turn right for two miles, then jog left 1/4 mile, then right for 10 miles to the South Fork Campground and trailhead. From the trailhead, follow the South Fork Trail 100 yards to the junction of the Spring Cave Trail. The Cliff Lake Trail junctions the Spring Cave Trail 1/2 mile from the campground.

Seasonal Information:
Normally Accessible: May through November (NOTE: Always open. Beware of severe Winter conditions.) .

Current Conditions & Trip Reports
Open Updated: 2000-05-26 18:00:00.0

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Time of Day: noon
Length of Time: 3 hours
Difficulty: Moderate
Number of People Encountered: 11-25 ppl
Recommend to a Friend: Highly
Report: Trail is very clearly marked. Cave is easy to find. We took our 12 year old. Other people had smaller kids too. Awesome experience, fun, what an adventure! Definitely follow someone into the cave who knows where to go if you want a real adventure, otherwise, you can walk around for awhile but not find the hidden pathways. We came to a few parts where we though "this must be the end" but the guy in front of us kept showing us where to go - we never would have known!
Conditions: Wet & cold in the cave.
Water Availability: 1 bottle per person is good for a short trip.
Recommended Clothing: Wear clothes you don't mind getting dirty. Dress in layers. Long pants. Gloves recommended.
Suggested Accessories: Definitely a head lamp.

Difficulty: Hard
Number of People Encountered: 0-10 ppl
Recommend to a Friend: Not Recommended
Report: Very difficult to find Spring Cave, and for that matter, the trail. The cave is dangerous.

Recreation Opportunities
Activity Remarks On Site
ICON Hiking & Walking

Related Activities
Cliff Lake Trail - This trail begins east of Meeker, along the South Fork of the White River, near the South Fork Campground. It takes you through blue spruce, aspen, and oakbrush allowing occasional views of South Fork Canyon.

South Fork Campground - South Fork Campground is located 32 miles east of Meeker up the South Fork of the White River, at an elevation of 8,000 feet.

South Fork General Forest Area - The South Fork General Forest area offers accessibility to a wide variety of trails, lakes, campgrounds, fishing, hunting and other outdoor activities within the Blanco Ranger District of the White River National Forest.


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