Fern Creek Trail # 815

Area Status: Open
This area is Open

The Fern Creek Trail (#815) is 12.5 miles long. It begins at Forest Road 522 and ends with a junction at Squaw Creek Trail (#814).  The majority of the trail was burned over in 2013 by the Papoose Fire.  Use caution when going into this area, as there is the potential for fallen/hazardous trees, flash flooding, debris flows, and the trail is not routinely maintained.

The trail begins by making a steady 3.7 mile climb from the trailhead at 9,200 feet towards Little Ruby Lake at about 11,300 feet.  This section of the trail is open to OHVs less than 50 inches wide, motorcycles, mountain bikes, horse and foot travel.  After reaching Little Ruby Lake, motorized vehicles and mountain bikes are no longer permitted. The trail grade flattens out, makes a short climb through a small patch of spruce, and then heads gradually downhill to Texas Creek.

The trail then climbs out of Texas Creek drainage before descending again into the Little Squaw bottom. Fern Creek Trail then climbs sharply up to the Chief Mountain ridge. After traveling through intermittent timber and large, open parks, the trail descends until it meets the Squaw Creek Trail. From this point it is about 2.5 miles along Squaw Creek Trail to the Squaw Creek Trailhead at Thirty Mile Campground.

The Fern Creek Trail is primarily used for access to the popular Ruby Lake Area. The section of trail from Little Ruby Lake to Chief Mountain Ridge can be hard to follow as it was heavily burned, and the trail is poorly defined. For best results, look for stock driveway markers on trees and posts.

Use and Restrictions:

The trail is open the first 4 miles to Big Ruby Lake for the following uses: horseback riding, Off Highway Vehicles (OHV) less than or equal to 50 inches wide, mountain bikes, and foot travel.

After Big Ruby Lake, it enters the Weminuche Wilderness, permitted use is limited to: horse and foot travel.

At a Glance

Usage: Heavy
Restrictions: No Motorized Vehicles past big Ruby Lake.
Closest Towns: Creede, CO
Water: No
Restroom: No
Operated By: Forest Service

General Information

Directions: From the town of Creede, travel west on State Highway 149 for 16 miles. Turn left and travel to the southwest on Forest Road 522 (Fern Creek Road) for 1.5 miles to the trailhead.

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  Area/Length : 
12.5 miles

  Latitude : 

  Longitude : 

  Elevation : 
9300 - 12000