Wildlfowers on the GMUG


blue tiny alpine daisey tyep flowers  photo of a dad showing daughter flowers
 photo of someone taking pictures of flowers  photo of magenta paintbrush


The peak wildflower blooms on our forest generally occur about the middle of July each summer. The mountain passes (Ophir, Imogene, Engineer and Cinnamon) are outstanding routes to get up high and enjoy the lush and colorful landscapes. For the more ambitious and hardier visitor, there are many miles of hiking or biking trails that lead alongside some breathtaking meadows full of columbine, paintbrush, fireweed, delphiniums, mountain bluebells and more.


Celebrating Wildflowers  is a National Forest Service website dedicated to the enjoyment of the thousands of wildlfowers growing on our national forests and grasslands, and to educating the public about the many values of native plants.


A few of our popular viewing areas and hiking trails-

  • Hope Lake - 6 miles out and back, south of  Telluride
  • US Basin - east side of  Red Mountain Pass near Ouray
  • Lizard Head - Wilson Meadows - 5 miles out and back, trailhead at Lizard Head Pass parking lot, south of Telluride
  • Bilk Creek Upper Falls - 7 miles out and back,  trailhead is off Sunshine Mesa Road, near Telluride.
  • Bear Creek Falls - 4.5 miles out and back , south on Pine Street in Telluride
  • Lower Blue Lake - 6.6 miles out and back, trailhead at the end of Dallas Creek Road (CR 7/FR 851 ) west of Ridgway on CO 62. 
  • Wetterhorn Basin Trail from West Fork Cimarron River - 6.2 miles out and back, US 550 near Ridgway- take Owl Creek Pass Road,  turn right (south) on West Fork Cimarron Rd (FR 860)   
  • Copper Creek - trailhead north of Crested Butte and Gothic off (FR 317)
  • Rustlers Gulch - trailhead north of Crested Butte and Gothic off (FR 317) 
  • Oh-Be Joyful Trail (#836) - off  FR 754 from CR 734, north of Crested Butte  
  • more wildflower viewing areas on the GMUG

Here are a few of our more popular 4 wheel drive routes:

  • Yankee Boy Basin
  • Ophir Pass
  • Imogene
  • Black Bear Pass
  • Cinnamon Pass
  • American Basin

The Crested Butte Wildflower Festival  in July is a week of guided hikes, 4 wheel drive tours, presentations, art, photography tips and more!  

Enjoy the midsummer fields of wildflowers from the comfort of your car - check out our  Scenic Byways! 

Take a guided discovery hike with helpful tips on wildflower identification - check out the Grand Mesa Visitor Center on the Grand Mesa National Forest for a list of summer activities. Wildflowers on the Grand Mesa (print and go brochure)

20 things to do to enjoy wildflowers - here is a list of ideas and activities to help you learn your wildflowers.