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Fort Collins, CO: Montgomery Pass (Winter Route)

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Distance: 6.9 miles


Grab your skis or snowshoes to experience this wintry route that climbs past snowy landscapes to Montgomery Pass, a ridge-top lookout in Colorado's Medicine Bow Mountains.
  • Views near Montgomery Pass
  • Bockman Road Trailhead
  • Skiers on Bockman Road
  • Skin Track
  • Bockman Road
  • Medicine Bow and Never Summer Mountains
  • Skier on Bockman Road
  • Views of Medicine Bow and Never Summer Mountains
  • Scenic stretch along Bockman Road
  • Skier near Bockman Campground
  • Trail Junction
  • Trail to Montgomery Pass Yurts
  • Young Forest
  • Upper Montgomery Pass Yurt
  • Upper Montgomery Pass Yurt
  • Upper Montgomery Pass Yurt
  • Skier on Montgomery Pass Road
  • Creek Crossing
  • Skiers on Montgomery Pass Road
  • Icicles
  • Snowy Forest
  • Skier near Montgomery Pass
  • Skiing Montgomery Pass Road

During winters months, explore the quiet, snow-draped woods of State Forest State Park by skis or by snowshoes. Tucked between Rocky Mountain National Park, Routt National Forest, and the Rawah Wilderness, this rugged and remote state park plays host to a wide variety of winter trails that crisscross the Medicine Bow Mountains and connect a network of eight backcountry yurts.

From the winter parking area on CR 41, follow Bockman Road east toward Bockman Campground. Use this level stretch of road to warm up your legs and take in the surrounding scenery—the snowy trail traces an expansive meadow with striking views of the Medicine Bow and Never Summer Mountains. After 1.2, miles, turn right and cross the North Fork Michigan River.

From here, it's a steady climb to Montgomery Pass Trail, which intersects the road at mile 1.8. Turn left onto Montgomery Pass Trail, and climb past conifers and intermittent meadows to the turn-off for the Montgomery Pass Yurts (reservations required). Continue straight at this junction and keep climbing. Near mile 4, cross a creek flanked by steep banks of snow. Half a mile later, drop your pack and grab a snack in the small meadow that sits at 10,300 feet (it's another 2.4 miles to Montgomery Pass).

The route crests the Medicine Bow ridgeline at mile 6.2. Hang a right and head south along the spine for the final 0.7-mile stretch to Montgomery Pass. From this broad saddle, you'll find jaw-dropping views of the Diamond Peaks, the Never Summer Mountains, and the Mummy Range. When you're ready, turn around and descend back to the trailhead.

Info: Winter recreation in State Forest State Park

-Mapped by Kim Phillips

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