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The Tunnel Lake Trail leads users 5 miles over high alpine terrain. The trail never dips lower than 11,000'. Weather should be an important consideration when deciding to hike or ride this trail.

Tunnel Lake Trail, 1439, leads south from Tincup Pass Road to the Alpine Tunnel Road near Williams Pass. The Trail is 5 miles long and leads through high-alpine areas with prolonged exposure. Users should avoid taking this trail if severe weather threatens. Some of the trail travels over alpine meadows and willow bogs where rock cairns are the only visible markers. The use of a compass and topographic map are encouraged for this route.

The Tincup Road Trailhead lies at an elevation of 11,050'. The trail climbs from this high elevation so most of the route is above tree line. (Hence the warning against traveling when severe weather threatens.) At about the 4 mile mark the trail hits its high point of 12,300'. At this high point a ridge will extend to the left (east) culminating in a summit of 12,570'. Immediately south of this ridge is Tunnel Lake, although the trail does not go directly to it. The southern terminus of the trail lies at 12,000'.

Directions: From St. Elmo, Northern Access: From St. Elmo follow Tin Cup Pass Road (County Road 267) approximately 4 miles west to the trailhead on the southern side of the road.

Elevation: 11,100 feet

Usage: Light

Difficulty: Strenuous

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Pike and San Isabel National Forests, Colorado

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The details, dates, and prices mentioned here were accurate at the time of publication.

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