Sleep In The Dirt

Section 15:

Lake Granby to Grand Lake

What We Found

The content below contains general information about Big Agnes staff experience while traveling along the CDT through Colorado in the summer of 2018. While we have made an effort to provide you with a valuable trip-planning tool, we cannot offer any assurance that this information is current, complete or even accurate – if you choose to travel this route, do so at your own risk. This section follows the east side of Lake Granby and is very rarely traveled. After a moderate climb up Knight's Ridge the views open and the landscape is breathtaking. Keep an eye out for moose in the area and be respectful of wildlife.

  • distance
    15.3 miles
  • elevation gain
    2,450 feet
  • elevation loss
    2,811 feet
  • highest point
    9,005 feet
  • wilderness area
    yes
  • percent on trail
    95%

Section 15 is a great, easy to moderate hike along the eastern rim of Lake Granby. There were hundreds of fallen trees from a blow down, but they were recently cleaned up by a saw crew.  The trail was well marked and easy to follow. There is not a lot of elevation gain, but some pretty views of the lake. The section ends shortly after crossing what is ultimately the headwaters of the Colorado River which brings you right into the town of Grand Lake. On Trail: August 1st, 2018 - August 4th, 2018

Mac Kelly, Sales, Honey Stinger
Learn more about the hike

Our Itinerary

Southern Access Point:

Southern Tip of Lake Granby, where trail crosses Country Road 6 near Arapahoe Valley Ranch & Small Moose Trading Post. Ley Maps CO 12

Northern Access Point:

Town of Grand Lake, CO. (Where Trail Leaves West Portal Road). Ley Maps CO 10

Wilderness Area:

Yes

What We Experienced:

This section begins with a mellow trail that leads you to the base of Knight’s ridge, which has gorgeous views.

Plenty of great camping spots along the Colorado River, and plenty of water along the way.

Great opportunities for swimming and fishing as well.

Additional Resources: 

Leave No Trace Principles

Guthook Guide – Continental Divide Trail

U.S. Forest Service – Arapaho and Roosevelt National Forest

Our Route

Ascent:
2,450 feet

Descent:
2,811 feet

Grade per Mile:
405 feet

Pro tips:

Lots of water on trail, and very mellow vertical.

Tons of wildlife in the area, especially moose. Keep your distance and be respectful of wildlife.

There may be bad blowdown in the area, so bring a pair of hiking pants to save your legs and shins.

Bring good rain/wind gear, as the weather in the valley can be unexpected.

Skills We Needed

• Rock Scrambling
• Lightning Safety
• Map Navigation
• LNT Ethics
• Widow-maker safety

* This site and routes described within contain general information about Big Agnes staff adventures in the backcountry, summer 2018. While we have made an effort to provide you with a valuable trip-planning tool, we cannot offer any assurance that this information is current, complete or even accurate – if you choose to travel these routes, do so at your own risk. Prior to setting out check local weather, trail conditions, closures, legal access points, Forest Service, BLM, or National Park rules and regulations, and other risks involved. We hope to inspire responsible backcountry and public land use, but by using our website you agree to use this information at your own risk.