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Wind along Missouri Creek past several waterfalls to a gorgeous cirque full of alpine lakes.


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Map Key

9.2

Miles

14.9

KM

Out and Back

11,969' 3,648 m

High

10,034' 3,058 m

Low

2,064' 629 m

Up

2,063' 629 m

Down

8%

Avg Grade (5°)

44%

Max Grade (24°)

Dogs Off-leash

Features Lake · River/Creek · Views · Waterfall · Wildflowers

Overnight camping requires a free permit - self-register at the trailhead. No fires allowed.

Description

Start from the Missouri Lakes trailhead, which is immediately to the left of the Fancy Lake trailhead at the end of Forest Road 704.

Starting about a mile in, the trail begins winding back and forth across Missouri Creek, passing several small waterfalls and striking cliffs. The stands of confer you pass through feel unusually lush for Colorado. The trail climbs consistently through the trees, eventually opening up into beautiful alpine meadows as you approach the lakes.

More consistent climbing out of the meadows brings you into the Missouri Lakes basin. You'll have gorgeous views no matter where you look, dominated by 13,139 ft Savage Peak to the south. The next mile or so is a very gentle climb though several smaller lakes, with many spurs and footpaths if you'd like to explore a bit more.

Continue past the lakes for a steep climb up to Missouri Pass (11,986 ft), where you can simply enjoy the expansive views of the Missouri Lakes basin to the south and Cross Creek Valley to the north before heading back, or had a little further to join Fancy Pass Trail #2006 and make a loop back to the trailhead.

The lakes are also a popular fishing spot.

Contacts

Shared By:

Rachel Vecchitto

Trail Ratings

  4.8 from 29 votes

#348

Overall
  4.8 from 29 votes
5 Star
79%
4 Star
21%
3 Star
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1 Star
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Recommended Route Rankings

#76

in Colorado

#348

Overall
8 Views Last Month
6,433 Since Jul 25, 2016
Intermediate/Difficult Intermediate/Difficult

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Photos

Great view of Missouri Lakes in September
Sep 20, 2020 near Avon, CO
The eastern side of Missouri Lakes.
Jul 26, 2016 near Avon, CO
Missouri Lakes
Jul 26, 2016 near Avon, CO
Missouri Lakes basin
Aug 7, 2017 near Avon, CO
Non-stop gorgeous views at Missouri Lakes, with Savage Peak just out of the frame in the upper right.
Jul 25, 2016 near Avon, CO
Missouri Lake
Aug 7, 2017 near Avon, CO

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Add Your Check-In

Check-Ins

Sep 25, 2020
Anthony Abercrombie
Aug 16, 2020
Ash Smith
7mi — 5h 00m
Jul 3, 2020
Zac Johnson
Jun 26, 2020
Ro Lyon
Sep 3, 2019
Noelle Frantz
Gorgeous hike. Amazing lakes. Took the up-mountain trail at the avalanche field and it was no problem. Highly recommend — 5h 30m
Aug 6, 2019
Shira Hecht
Aug 5, 2019
Shira Hecht
Aug 4, 2019
Caitlin Kinnett
Girls trip. 9mi
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