The upper segment of National Forest Trail 203, Blaine Basin Trail, can be accessed from several points, but the most popular route is from the same parking lot as Blue Lakes Trail
. While most of the hikers will head off on Blue Lakes Trail
, you'll have this trail mostly to yourself.
This part of the 203 Trail is limited to horse and foot traffic. To get to this segment, you may have to share the trail with ATVers and mountain bikers though we didn't see evidence of either on a nice July weekend. A lower segment of 203 Trail is open to ATVers but is bypassed by using the Blue Lakes Trail
trailhead parking area.
The trail climbs steadily through the forest before opening up to the signed Blaine Basin
. There is a water crossing to negotiate in order to get into the higher reaches of the basin, so watch your step! In addition, there is a nice spot to camp off to the left. This provides a perfect way to give yourself extra time to soak up the beauty of this pretty basin.
The basin itself will be overflowing with wildflowers in July and is surrounded by huge mountains, including the 14er Mt. Sneffels