Holy Cross City

Holy Cross Wilderness Area, Colorado

Elevation Gain2,519ft
Trailhead Elevation9,323ft
Elevation Min/Max9323/11692ft
Elevation Start/End9323/9323ft

Holy Cross City

Holy Cross City is a hiking, biking, and horse trail in Eagle County, Colorado. It is within Holy Cross Wilderness Area and White River National Forest. It is 4.5 miles long and begins at 9,323 feet altitude. Traveling the entire trail is 9.1 miles with a total elevation gain of 2,519 feet. This trail connects with the following: Fancy-French.

Holy Cross City Professional Guides

Detailed Trail Descriptions from Our Guidebooks

Guide to Colorado Backroads & 4-Wheel Drive Trails, Vol. 1 (FunTreks)
Charles A. Wells
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"The main feature of this trail is the consistent challenge it offers from one end to the other. The fun begins immediately and gets better with each successive mile. One of the most popular hard-core trails in the state of Colorado replete with stunning scenery, historical points of interest and fun obstacles. The trail is surrounded by Holy Cross Wilderness, which offers remote hiking to many high-mountain lakes. This trail is extremely difficult for ATVs, but in recent years, more riders are attempting it. Make sure you travel with a group. Staging is available at Gold Park Forest Service Campground, at the main trailhead and at the secondary trailhead by the exit route. One of the most difficult hard-core trails in the state, offering non-stop challenges to the serious four-wheeler. The toughest obstacle, Cleveland Rock, occurs just above Holy Cross City. Here, body damage is likely even for modified vehicles. Rollovers are not uncommon. Minimum 33-inch tires and differential lockers are basic necessities for the entire trail. Expect to pay exorbitant towing charges if you get in trouble—a good reason to go with a group as most people do."

Holy Cross City Trip Reports

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As mentioned by a previous reviewer, there are some steep, rocky sections to this level 8 4x4 trail, but the views at the upper elevations of the trail make the trip worth the effort. I also found the mining equipment very interesting and was pleased to find a couple of structures still standing.
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This trail is advertised and promoted as a jeep trail, so hikers might want to avoid it on weekends. My wife and I hiked it with our kids (12 and 14) mid-week in June and didn't encounter ANYONE, let alone a parade of jeeps. It's rocky much of the way, with a steady uphill to the old mining town of Holy Cross City and beyond. Nice views on most parts of the trail. It's a good one to do with kids who like to hike. Ours particularly found the old abandonded mining equipment near Holy Cross City to be interesting.

Holy Cross City Photos

Trail Information

Holy Cross Wilderness Area
Nearby City
Holy Cross Wilderness Area
Additional Use
San Isabel National Forest, White River Nationa Forest
Local Contacts
USGS Fulford, Grouse Mountain, Homestake Reservoir, Minturn, Mount Jackson, Mount of the Holy Cross, Nast
Local Maps

Trail Log