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The Wilder Gulch Trail is located west of Copper Mountain. It climbs up Wilder Gulch from the Vail Pass Recreation Trail toward Ptarmigan Pass. From the base of the Wilder Gulch Trail at the Vail Pass Recreation Trail, travel south up the valley away from the interstate. The trail climbs continuously as it parallels the stream where numerous beaver ponds are found. After 2.3 miles the trail swings to the right and ends on a dirt road, which winds up to Ptarmigan Pass at the head of the valley. Ptarmigan Pass offers a good view of the Sawatch Range and the west side of the Gore Range.

The area is closed to motorized vehicles in the summer, but snowmobiles do use the area in the winter. Numerous 4 WD roads exist after reaching the top of Wilder Gulch.

Directions: From Beaver Creek, Go 23 miles east on I-70 to exit #190, near the summit of Vail Pass. Turn right and park in the large parking area. Hikers can follow the Vail Pass Recreation Trail (a paved bicycle trail) to Wilder Gulch. Cross through the tunnel under the interstate which is just south and east, and follow the Recreation Trail to just before the stream crossing. Hike under the interstate bridge to the trail.

Elevation: 10,500 feet

Ending Elevation: 11,500 feet

Elevation Gain: 1,000 feet

Distance: 3.0 miles

Usage: Light

Difficulty: Easy

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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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