Tincup Pass and Saint Elmo

Saint Elmo, Colorado 81236

Tincup Pass and Saint Elmo

Tincup Pass and Saint Elmo Professional Guide

Detailed Trail Description from our Guidebook

"A beautiful high-elevation route starting and ending at historic, quaint mountain towns. Saint Elmo is one of the most popular ghost towns in Colorado. All of the buildings are privately owned and a few are occupied by active businesses. Tincup is a small residential community with many century-old buildings. A tiny steepled white church in the center of town punctuates the photogenic setting. By 1910, with mines failing and the Alpine Tunnel closed, Saint Elmo lost its favor. When the last mine, Mary Murphy, closed down in 1920, Saint Elmo was finished. Contrary to popular belief, Tincup is not a ghost town.

Most of the old cabins in town have been restored to their original condition and are occupied. Still, one gets the impression the town is 150 years old. Rocky at the top with one short section of narrow shelf road at 12,000 feet that often remains snow covered into early July. After the snow clears, this trail is suitable for any high-clearance, 4-wheel-drive SUV with low-range gearing. Saint Elmo can be reached by car. The optional “Old Tincup” route has one difficult rocky section."

Tincup Pass and Saint Elmo Trip Reports

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We have taken this pass several times over the last couple of years and the views are truely wonderful, to include an occational sighting of the many Elk herds at the top of the pass. Recommend taking the loop on ATV from Tincup to St. Elmo, then over Hancock Pass and up to the Alpine Tunnel, then to Pitkin and over Cumberland Pass back to Tin Cup. All together around 70 miles and 9 hours but well worth the trip. For the geocachers out there, there are numerous caches along the way.

Tincup Pass and Saint Elmo Photos

Trail Information

Saint Elmo
Nearby City
Trail Type
ATVs and Dirt Bikes
Allow 2 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; Trails Illustrated #129 and #130
Local Maps

Trail Log