“A pretty forest service road with some cardio-killer-climbs!”
— Jared Crockett
Fall Colors · Views · Wildflowers · Wildlife
This hike takes you to the top of Storm Mountain, a front range peak that is higher than most, offering stunning views of the plains below, and of the jagged peaks of RMNP beyond. It's popular with off-roaders in the summer months, but is closed to vehicular traffic in the winter (hint: great time to use it!).
This featured hike uses parts of forest service roads 128 and 153. These roads, and others, meander throughout the woods up here, so there's plenty more to explore!
There is parking enough for about two or maybe three cars at the forest service gate. Begin the hike there. The first half a mile, or so, is a pleasant and only gradual climb through forest and open meadows. Don't let this lull you into a sense of security, because after that the road climbs sharply up the mountain. It gets steep fast! The steepest sections are broken up by flatter sections.
Most of the road winds through forest canopy and provides ample shade. When you get to the last big descent to the crest of the mountain, however, it bursts into an open clearing where large and loose rocks cover the road. Watch your step and your ankles!
Once to the top of that climb, you are essentially home free. Enjoy the final stretch through the trees until you pop out on the other side and have arrived at the top. The route shows a very short side jaunt at the top which, if followed, will take you to the proper summit of Storm. Enjoy the spectacular views from up here, catch your breath, and get ready to head back down the mountain the way you came to your car.