Fourth of July Trailhead

Photo of the small parking area for the 4th of July Trailhead at the end of a rocky road

This trailhead is accessed by five miles of rough, two-wheel-drive road. It is exceedingly popular, and parking is limited, especially on summer weekends. In winter, motorized access is typically not possible. Fourth of July Trailhead provides access to  Arapaho Pass, Diamond Lake, and  Arapaho Glacier Trails inside the Indian Peaks Wilderness.

At this trailhead is a small campground owned and operated by the City of Boulder called Buckingham Campground. Private property also exists in this area. Do not trespass.

At a Glance

Permit Info: This trail lies within the Indian Peaks Wilderness Area:
  • Camping permits required for all overnight trips between June 1 and September 15. Overnight permits cost $5 per group, per trip from June 1 through September 15.
  • Organized groups are required to have a permit for both camping and day-hiking year round. Day-hiking permits are free.
Usage: Heavy
Restrictions: Indian Peak Wilderness restrictions apply:
  • Motorized equipment and mechanized transportation are prohibited.
  • Pets must be on a hand-held leash at all times.
  • Campfires are prohibited year round.
  • Campsites must be at least 100 feet away from water and trail.
  • Group size is limited to 12 (people and livestock combined).
  • Processed weed-free feed is required for stock.
  • Practice Leave No Trace principles.
Fishing and hunting: permitted in accordance with regulations established by the Colorado Parks & Wildlife.
Closest Towns: Nederland, Colorado
Water: No
Restroom: No
Operated By: U.S. Forest Service

General Information


From Nederland, head south on Colorado Highway 119 for 0.6 miles. Turn west onto County Road 130, signed for Eldora. Follow the paved road through the valley to the Town of Eldora, where the pavement ends. Continue beyond the end of the pavement to the end of the road.


Access to the Fourth of July Trailhead is via Fourth of July Road. This road is maintained by Boulder County. There is now a seasonal gate on this road. This gate closes at the beginning of the winter season depending on weather conditions and other factors. Boulder County typically plows this road and opens the gate before Memorial Day weekend.


Day Hiking

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