Marshall Pass and Poncha Creek

Poncha Springs, Colorado 81242

Marshall Pass and Poncha Creek

Marshall Pass and Poncha Creek Professional Guide

Detailed Trail Description from our Guidebook

"A popular camping and fishing area with several Forest Service campgrounds around O’Haver Lake. Poncha Creek Road offers a better backcountry experience with stream fishing and dispersed camping next to the water. A parking lot near Shirley Townsite and Marshall Pass provide convenient staging for ATVs and dirt bikes. Unlicensed vehicles are not allowed on major county roads entering and leaving the area. In the 1920s, the town of Shirley was a transfer point for silver, zinc, lead and copper ores that arrived via aerial tram from the Rawley Mine in Bonanza located over the mountains to the south. From there, the ore was loaded onto rail cars of the Denver and Rio Grande Western Railroad and hauled over Marshall Pass to smelters in Salida and Leadville. Shirley died in 1930 when the Rawley Mine shut down. Marshall Pass can be reached from either side via well-graded, two-wheel-drive roads. The route shown here takes you up the east side along parallel Poncha Creek Road. This 4-wheel-drive road is less traveled with fewer tourists. Suitable for any four-wheel-drive SUV. Road closed Nov. 15 to May 30."

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Trail Information

Poncha Springs
Nearby City
Trail Type
3 to 4 hours
Spring through fall; when snow free
Gunnison National Forest; San Isabel National Forest
Local Contacts
Colorado Atlas and Gazetteer; San Isabel National Forest map; Gunnison National Forest map
Local Maps

Trail Log