Mosca Pass Trail

Great Sand Dunes National Preserve, Colorado

Elevation Gain2,019ft
Trailhead Elevation9,666ft
Elevation Min/Max8248/9667ft
Elevation Start/End9666/9666ft

Mosca Pass Trail

Mosca Pass Trail is a hiking and horse trail in Alamosa County, Colorado. It is within Great Sand Dunes National Preserve and Great Sand Dunes National Park. It is 3.1 miles long and begins at 9,666 feet altitude. Traveling the entire trail is 6.3 miles with a total elevation gain of 2,019 feet. The Mosca Pass Trailhead parking is near the trailhead. There are also a parking and an information map. This trail connects with the following: Wellington Ditch Trail.

Mosca Pass Trail Professional Guides

Detailed Trail Descriptions from Our Guidebooks

Hiking Colorado's Sangre de Cristos and Great Sand Dunes (Falcon Guides)
Jason Moore, Revised by Lee Hart
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"This is an easy climb to a high pass on the crest of the range, with views of the San Luis and Wet Mountain Valleys. Camping areas are are available throughout much of the valley. A backcountry permit is required. From the Mosca Pass Trailhead on the west side of the range, Trail 883 starts at the Montville self-guided trail. Follow it to the upper bridge crossing and then go east along the trail on the north side of the creek. Climb up the narrow and steep-walled Mosca Creek valley for about 2.0 miles. For the last mile to the top of the pass, the valley becomes broader with some open meadows, and the grade of the trail becomes flatter. Views of the dunes and the San Luis Valley to the west become more and more impressive as you approach the pass."
100 Classic Hikes in Colorado (The Mountaineers Books)
Scott S. Warren
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"Constituting the "preserve" portion of the Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve are a string of summits within the Sangre de Cristo Mountains that tower over the dunes to the east. The 3.5-mile Mosca Pass Trail offers a nice introduction to the forested portions of these peaks. The Mosca Pass Trail begins by following the Montville Nature Trail east. This 0.5-mile guided loop trail explores the former town site of Montville. Once complete with an orchard, a store, some twenty houses, and a post office, Montville was established in the 1880's."

Mosca Pass Trail Trip Reports

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This was a very enjoyable hike, and it was very steep in places. There are a few points where you can climb onto rocks and get a great view of the dunes and Medano Creek. According to the National Park info, the hike is actually 3.5 miles one way. If you continue on a ways (maybe another 1/4 mile) beyond the fence at the end of the trail, then turn right and continue up the dirt road (before you start going downhill if you stay straight), you will crest the top and see a breathtaking view of the Sangre de Cristo mountain range. This is a must see and makes the 3.5 miles out worth every sore muscle!
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Mosca Pass Trail Photos

Trail Information

Great Sand Dunes National Preserve
Nearby City
Great Sand Dunes National Preserve
Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve; Sangre de Cristo Wilderness Area
Local Contacts
USGS Zapata Ranch
Local Maps