This description begins from the east end of the Island Lake Trail. This trail can also be traveled from the west side. For that description, see the Blanco Ranger District of the White River National Forest.
From Stump Park, northwest of Burns, follow trail #1860 to its junction with the Island Lake Trail, which begins at the Flat Tops Wilderness boundary sign. Soon after turning onto #1842, the Island Lake Trail is the first of eight stream crossings. The trail climbs sharply out of the North Derby Creek drainage, then rises gradually to about 10,400 feet where it descends slowly into Middle Derby Creek. From Middle Derby to Island Lakes the climb is steeper and the toughest part of the hike comes after leaving the lakes. Beyond the lakes, the trail rises to an elevation of 11,600 feet before its junction with the "W" Mountain Trail #1817. The trail then continues north just over a mile to its junction with the Chinese Wall Trail #1803 and then west about 1/2 mile to the Trappers Lake Trail #1816.
Several detours and trip extensions are available to the traveler. The South Derby Trail #1857 which joins at Upper Island Lake, will lead to the four-wheel drive road #613, below Crescent Lake on South Derby Creek. The Deer Lake Trail #1802 leads north from the Upper Island Lake area. The "W" Mountain, Chinese Wall and Trappers Lake trails mentioned above, provide additional access through the Flat Tops Wilderness.
Directions: From Beaver Creek, The Island Lake Trail #1842, joins the Hooper Lake Trail #1860 about 1.4 miles above Stump Park. To arrive at Stump Park, the trailhead for Hooper Lake, take I-70 west of Avon for 34 miles to the Dotsero exit. From there follow the signs for Burns and Sweetwater to the Colorado River Road. Go north on the river road for 24 miles. Turn left onto Cabin Creek Road and follow it for seven miles to the intersection with Forest Road 610, the Stump Park Road, turn right and go about a quarter mile. This is the start of public lands and where you can park. Road 610 is a very rough four-wheel drive road. The terminus of Road 610 is 10 miles from here. Add an additional 4 hours to the trip if you start from here.
Elevation: 10,000 feet
Elevation Gain: 1,560 feet
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White River National Forest, Colorado
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