Where to take wife for first backpack overnighter near Denver?

Hunter Sargent

Senior Member
Joined
May 2, 2016
Messages
249
My wife and I are coming into Denver in June for work and are going to come a couple days early (June 18th and 19th) for her first backpack overnighter. Do you have any suggestions for trails to hike within 90 minutes or so of Denver? Preferrably where dispersed camping is allowed, and bonus points for the ability to camp semi-close to a trout stream or lake.

I should also add that I would like to keep the hike 3 miles or less since she is a beginner.

Thanks,
Sarge
 
Last edited:

WyoElk

Senior Member
Joined
Mar 11, 2014
Messages
669
Couple options,

If you want to stay close to Denver check out Guenella Pass out of Georgetown. Silver Dollar Lake would fit the bill or else there are plenty of other places up there. You can fish silver dollar.

You could also try something out of Silverthorne. There is a big outlet mall there so if the trip doesn't go well and you need to get back into her good graces it would be an easy stop. There are a lot of trails that lead into the eagles nest wilderness on the NW side of town.
 
OP
H

Hunter Sargent

Senior Member
Joined
May 2, 2016
Messages
249
Look up Kroenke lake. Might be what your looking for?

Thanks CoHiCntry. While that looks like a fantastic spot, I don't think my wife is up for the Continental Divide Trail, unless there is another trail to it that isn't shown on my map.
 

fng4life

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 18, 2016
Messages
2,316
Location
Colorado
Lilly pad lake just outside of Frisco in eagles nest wilderness/ white river nf. 2 miles each way. Once at the lake it might be another mile to find camp depending on whats taken and how far off the trail you want to go. We took our 8 year old there for her first overnight. Trail is gradually steep. Footing isn't tricky, just need a good soled shoe so you don't feel every rock. Not sure about the fishing though.

Take the first exit for Frisco (just past silverthorne) at the round about take the flat gravel one mile road. Trail head will say meadow Creek, lilly pad starts about .75miles in to your right.

This is primarily a day hike for locals but dispersed camping is allowed. For her first time it should leave her wanting more not turning her off from it. Bonus is she might want to go gear shopping afterwards.

For plan b you can spend the day in Breckenridge. Fish the blue river just north of silverthorne.
 
OP
H

Hunter Sargent

Senior Member
Joined
May 2, 2016
Messages
249
Lilly pad lake just outside of Frisco in eagles nest wilderness/ white river nf. 2 miles each way. Once at the lake it might be another mile to find camp depending on whats taken and how far off the trail you want to go. We took our 8 year old there for her first overnight. Trail is gradually steep. Footing isn't tricky, just need a good soled shoe so you don't feel every rock. Not sure about the fishing though.

Take the first exit for Frisco (just past silverthorne) at the round about take the flat gravel one mile road. Trail head will say meadow Creek, lilly pad starts about .75miles in to your right.

This is primarily a day hike for locals but dispersed camping is allowed. For her first time it should leave her wanting more not turning her off from it. Bonus is she might want to go gear shopping afterwards.

For plan b you can spend the day in Breckenridge. Fish the blue river just north of silverthorne.

Thanks FNG! That is great info and looks like a cool area.
 
OP
H

Hunter Sargent

Senior Member
Joined
May 2, 2016
Messages
249
You're welcome. Nice thing about that trail is you can be back at the car in about 2 hours if for some reason things go wrong. Let me know if you want more info on it.

I'm also looking at Sandbeach Lake, but I think 4.2 miles with 2000 feet of elevation gain might make my wife hate backpacking lol.
 

fng4life

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 18, 2016
Messages
2,316
Location
Colorado
I'm also looking at Sandbeach Lake, but I think 4.2 miles with 2000 feet of elevation gain might make my wife hate backpacking lol.
The Google Earth fly through looks a bit much for a first time. Long stretch of side hill that didn't look maintained at all. Does she have hiking or climbing experiance? Also have you checked camping restrictions? Google labeled a campground at the lake. Boulder county gets a little funny about things.
 
OP
H

Hunter Sargent

Senior Member
Joined
May 2, 2016
Messages
249
The Google Earth fly through looks a bit much for a first time. Long stretch of side hill that didn't look maintained at all. Does she have hiking or climbing experiance? Also have you checked camping restrictions? Google labeled a campground at the lake. Boulder county gets a little funny about things.

I agree. I ended up reserving a campground at Fern Lake. 3.8 miles with about 1,300' of elevation gain. She has done a few weighted hikes with me so she should be able to handle it, but we can't replicate the steepness and altitude here in Kansas. I was hoping for about 2 miles, but all of those were booked within RMNP. I will keep Lilly Pad Lake in my back pocket for when my kids are old enough to come.

Thanks again!
 

mfolch

Senior Member
Joined
Jun 1, 2013
Messages
326
Should have posted a similar question on this forum a few years ago when I was in the same situation. Instead, I took my wife on an ambitious, subalpine hike along what is considered one of the most difficult trails in the state, which, because of rain fall, transformed into a wet, slippery, hellish, nearly vertical ascent. She vowed never to go on another overnighter with me again.

The upside is that she got me a dog so I would have a hiking companion in the future...
 
Top