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The Wheeler National Recreation Trail leads from McCullough Gulch, south of Breckenridge, over the Tenmile Range to Copper Mountain. It can be accessed from either end, or from the Spruce Creek or Crystal Trails.

From the McCullough Gulch trailhead, the trail climbs sharply for approximately 1 mile. From the ridge top, the trail then descends through an old burn area for 1.5 miles. At this point the trail drops steeply into Spruce Creek, crosses the creek and the Spruce Creek Road. Follow the aqueduct for 200 yards, watching for the sign as the trail reenters the woods. Walk gradually upward until crossing Crystal Creek. Continue across the 4 WD road and switch back up the side of Peak 10. The trail then levels out before dropping into the basin below Peaks 9 and 10. From here you see the Tenmile Range and the Blue River drainage from Breckenridge to Silverthorne. The trail crosses a 4 WD road and heads up to the saddle between Peaks 8 and 9. The pass offers an excellent view of the Tenmile, Gore and Sawatch Ranges. The trail drops down the side of the range toward Copper Mountain from here. Just after crossing a small creek, the Miners Creek Trail heads off to the right. After 2 miles, the trail crosses Tenmile Creek on a foot bridge and ends in a parking area on the east side of Highway 91 at Copper Mountain Ski Area.

Directions: From Beaver Creek, Travel 28 miles east on I-70 to the Copper Mountain exit, #195 and turn toward Copper Mountain. Just beyond the I-70 interchange, turn left into the Wheeler Flats trailhead.

Elevation: 11,000 feet

Ending Elevation: 9,700 feet

Elevation Gain: 3,900 feet

Distance: 10.0 miles

Usage: Light

Difficulty: Strenuous

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White River National Forest, Colorado

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

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