Fox Park

Estes Park, Colorado

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Fox Park is a hanging valley along Buchanan Creek. The Buchanan Pass Trail beyond the junction with the Gourd Lake Trail follows gently up Buchanan Creek until switchbacks lift it to an inevitable higher level into Fox Park. The detour to Gourd Lake is rightly tempting, but descending from Gourd Lake 1,280 feet to the Buchanan Pass Trail to either visit Fox Park or climb beyond to the pass involves an intimidating loss and regaining of altitude. There is a better way. From a long forested ridge next to Gourd Lake’s southeastern shore, an informal, but mostly clear trail leads to a meadow just above Fox Park. Sometimes the path climbs steeply in order that hikers do not have to cross steep rock. Elsewhere, the path crosses avalanche runs that can be dangerous in spring.
Best Hikes Colorado's Indian Peaks Wilderness

DESCRIPTION FROM:

Best Hikes Colorado's Indian Peaks Wilderness

by Kent Dannen (Falcon Guides)

Fox Park is a hanging valley along Buchanan Creek.

The Buchanan Pass Trail beyond the junction with the Gourd Lake Trail follows gently up Buchanan Creek until switchbacks lift it to an inevitable higher level into Fox Park. The detour to Gourd Lake is rightly tempting, but descending from Gourd Lake 1,280 feet to the Buchanan Pass Trail to either visit Fox Park or climb beyond to the pass involves an intimidating loss and regaining of altitude.

There is a better way. From a long forested ridge next to Gourd Lake’s southeastern shore, an informal, but mostly clear trail leads to a meadow just above Fox Park. Sometimes the path climbs steeply in order that hikers do not have to cross steep rock. Elsewhere, the path crosses avalanche runs that can be dangerous in spring.

© 2017 Kent Dannen/Falcon Guides. All Rights Reserved.

Activity Type: Backpacking, Hiking, Horseback Riding
Nearby City: Estes Park
Distance: 16.32
Trail Type: Out-and-back
Duration: 14 hours
Season: Summer
Accessibility: Dog-friendly
Local Contacts: USDA Forest Service, Sulphur Ranger District, PO Box 10, 9 Ten Mile Dr., Granby CO 80446; (970) 887-4100; fs.usda.gov/arp
Local Maps: Trails Illustrated Indian Peaks Gold Hill; USGS Monarch Lake, Isolation Peak
Driving Directions: Directions to Fox Park

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Apr 2018