Trail Name: Colorado Trail at Kenosha Pass
Location: Kenosha, Colorado
Date: February 15, 2020
Time at the Trail Head: 8:30 am
Trail Length: 2.0 miles
Elevation Gain: 438 feet
Elev. at Trail Head: 10,000 feet
# of Hikers Passed: 14
# of Mnt. Bikers Passed: 0
# of Horses Passed: 0
We decided to go on our first snowshoeing hike and were told about the Kenosha Pass by some great folks at the REI store in Englewood, Colorado.
I did some additional research on AllTrails.com and looked for a trail that would not be extremely steep or long but would provide some great views.
I found a section of the Colorado Trail on the Kenosha Pass that looked pretty flat and had some great views within 1 mile of the trailhead. We didn’t want this hike to be long on our first snowshoeing adventure as we had heard that snowshoeing was more strenuous then a regular hike.
The trail turned out to be perfect for our first time out.
Drive to the Trail
The drive from Denver, up through Conifer and Bailey and on to Kenosha Pass is a gorgeous drive and on this beautiful Saturday morning, with the sun rising in the east and bringing the Rocky Mountains to life, the drive was absolutely spectacular.
The drive from Denver takes about 1 hour an 30 minutes but it never seems that long when you’re enjoying all the beauty of the Rockies.
My Day on the Trail
We arrived at the trailhead around 8 am and were surprised that we were one of the first cars there. There are no facilities at this trailhead but there is a campground next to the trailhead with a bathroom that looked to be open, even though it is not visible from the highway.
It’s always interesting when hiking in the snow because hikers go off trail frequently, and we found ourselves going up a fairly steep mountain, which was more difficult in snowshoes. My guess is that there was between 3 and 4 feet of snow here at an altitude of 10,000 feet.
It’s so great to have gear, like snowshoes to hike with so that we can hike all year long in Colorado. We rented the MSR Lightening Ascent from REI and loved the snowshoes, but I do want to buy the new model that has an improved binding that is easier to adjust and has less pressure points on our feet.
- Ultralight (4.33 lbs) technical snowshoes with superior traction for mountaineering, aggressive backcountry pursuits, and rugged terrain
- 360-degree Traction Frames deliver edge-to-edge grip, especially on traverses, while durable steel DTX crampons provide serious bite on alpine steeps
- Paragon bindings feature a one-piece contouring strap that wraps securely around boots, for a glove-like feel that eliminates rigid pressure points, and provides easy alignment and foot control
- Ergo Televator heel lift bar flips up to increase uphill efficiency, provide help on steep ascents, and reduce fatigue
- Snowshoes measure 8 x 25 inches, weigh 4.33 pounds/pair, and can carry up to a 220-pound load; bindings fit men’s shoes sizes 4.5-15; made in the USA
The views were incredible as we were looking to the south towards Fairplay, Colorado. There are no significant views to the north here unless you are on the road driving.
We started looking for a way off the mountain we had just climbed and didn’t want to go back the same way, which would have made to hike longer so we decided to blaze a new trail, which is much easier to do when the ground is covered in snow.
However, blazing a trail in 4 feet of snow is physically demanding for the hiker in the lead. Let’s just say that this physically exhausting feat created many opportunities for laughs and good times.
We finally reached the main trail again and headed towards the peak we had chosen earlier but this side trip added a good mile to our hike.
We stopped plenty of times to rest and take in the scenery of the Rockies.
The day was incredible, even though the temperature was around 30 degrees F, but the wind was light and the skies were clear of clouds, which made this day perfect for hiking.
We had to hike one more steep section and I hope you enjoy this photo because this was a tough section to climb.
We reached the mountain peak we were headed for and were rewarded with some more great photo opportunities, followed by a great log tepee.
The hike back to the trailhead was much easier as it was mostly down hill. We did come upon our trail that we blazed earlier and were impressed with how deep the snow was.
It’s always good to get to the traihead early in the Rocky Mountains as the parking lot was nearly packed when we returned about 11:30 am.
This trail is easy to reach from Denver and provides several hiking routes. We saw some experienced hikers and families with very young children.
I would recommend this trail to anyone, especially if you want to try snowshoeing for the first time.
Lunch in Bailey, Colorado
We stopped and had a great lunch in Bailey at the Rustic Station. I had to try the fish and chips and the other guys in our hiking group ordered burgers, which they were very impressed with.
Finding a local restaurant after a hike in the Rocky Mountains has become a tradition for us and the Rustic Station was perfect.
If you would like to see more of the trail, then check out this short video of the Kenosha Pass trail on YouTube.
I would love to know if you have had any experience on this trail or have other trails you love to hike. Leave a Comment Below or send me an Email.
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