Bard Creek Trail

Difficulty
This reflects the 10Adventures difficulty rating for each route. We aim to keep ratings consistent across regions.
Hard
Duration
This reflects the estimated time the majority of users will take on this trail. If you are slower, add time to the top-end figure. If you are fast, then you may complete this route faster than this time range.
6.5-9h
Distance
This reflects the return distance of this route as measured by the GPS file.
22.5 km
Elevation
This reflects the total elevation gained throughout this route as measured by the GPS file. This includes all ascents and descents, and is higher than what is quoted in most route guides, which simply measure the distance between the starting-point and high-point of the route.
862 m
User Ratings
These ratings are completed by users who have completed this trail and not subject to reviews by 10Adventures.
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Directions to Trailhead

The Bard Creek Trail is a popular backpacking adventure through the Arapaho National Forest, but it’s an even better one-way day hike in our opinion! We love adventures that exhibit various terrains and the Bard Creek Trail delivers just that! Explore the new scenery every step of the way!

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Route Description for Bard Creek Trail

The Bard Creek Hike is a wonderful adventure through the mountain valleys in the Arapaho National Forest. Hike through aspen groves, alongside alpine creeks, through meadowlands and across rocky ridges. This excursion demands an intrepid spirit, hike through the various landscapes and through unmarked terrain. We recommend using the trail GPS to mitigate the chances of getting lost. Proper footwear and microspikes in the autumn and winter months are also suggested! Make sure you pack plenty of provisions and water to keep you energized as you trek this lengthy route. Don’t forget to leave a car or arrange pickup at the trail’s end!

Explore the new scenery every step of the way along the Bard Creek Trail. Begin your adventure from the Herman Gulch Trailhead. Briefly track along the Herman Gulch Trail before merging onto the Watrous Gulch Trail. Hike along the Watrous Gulch Creek up the forested valley until you meet an intersection. At this point, veer right and you will be diverted onto the Bard Creek Trail. Trek this route along the exposed ridges of Mount Parnassus and Bard Peak. Eventually, you will summit Silver Plume Mountain. Enjoy the overlook of the encompassing Front Range peaks before continuing along the Bard Creek Trail.

Eventually the Bard Creek Trail will guide you below the timberline and through aspen groves. Descend the route and it will merge onto the Bard Creek Road before delivering you to the trail’s end.

Getting to the Bard Creek Trail Trailhead

The Bard Creek Trail departs from the Herman Gulch Trailhead and finishes at the end of County Road 232.

Route Information

  • Backcountry Campground

    Dispersed Backcountry Camping, restrictions apply.

  • When to do

    May-October

  • Pets allowed

    Yes - On Leash

  • Family friendly

    No

  • Route Signage

    Average

  • Crowd Levels

    Low

  • Route Type

    One Way

Bard Creek Trail Elevation Graph

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Bard Creek Trail Reviews

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