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Home > Trip Planning > Wilderness Areas

Wilderness Areas along The Colorado Trail

map of The Colorado Trail and adjoining Wilderness AreasThe Colorado Trail passes through six Wilderness Areas on its way from Denver to Durango:

Click here for comprehensive information for all Wilderness within Colorado and other states.

Please note that mountain biking and motorized vehicles are not allowed in all designated wilderness areas. The Colorado Trail: The Official Guidebook includes maps and descriptions of the designated detours for mountain bikers. In addition, trail crews and volunteers working in designated wilderness areas operate under specific Forest Service regulations that do not permit the use of power tools.

Dogs are allowed in all Wilderness areas through which The Colorado Trail passes, however, there are restrictions. In some Wilderness Areas, the dog restrictions require that dogs be on leash while in other areas voice command is allowed. The CTF suggests dog owners check with the National Forest and District offices which administer the areas through which they will be passing and confirm the applicable regulations (see Trip Planning > Forest Service for contact information).

The Lost Creek Wilderness has a group size maximum of 15 humans which can be accompanied by a maximum of 10 saddle/pack animals. (i.e. there is a maximum of 25 heartbeats to include no more than 15 humans and 10 saddle/pack animals).

Holy Cross, Collegiate Peaks, Weminuche and Mt. Massive all have a 25 heartbeat maximum also, but they only limit the number of humans to 15. In other words, you could have one person and 24 saddle/pack animals.

La Garita has a group size maximum of 15 humans or a combination of people and stock up to 25, but they limit the number of humans to 15.

If you would like more information about the Wilderness Act that established the National Wilderness Preservation System, click here.

Note: The information presented here does not include all regulations pertaining to the six wilderness areas listed. For the most complete and up to date information, please contact the US National Forest Ranger Districts listed with each wilderness area. You may also go to the Forest Service's wilderness website at

Leave No Trace

Remember, when visiting any wilderness area, always follow these principles:

  • Plan Ahead and Prepare
  • Travel and Camp on Durable Surfaces
  • Dispose of Waste Properly
  • Leave What You Find
  • Minimize Campfire Impacts
  • Respect Wildlife
  • Be Considerate of Other Visitors

For more Leave No Trace information click here.