Favorite Colorado Passes

Browns Pass
By Ed Helmuth & Gloria Helmuth
  |  Gorp.com

Elevation: 12,010 feet
Location: T14S R81W
County: Chaffee/Gunnison
Topo: Mount Yale
National Forest: Gunnison and San Isabel
On the Continental Divide

Browns Pass is accessible by foot via forest service trail #1442 from the south; it is in the Collegiate Peaks Wilderness Area. It divides the waters of Texas Creek to the north and the North Fork of Denny Creek to the south.

The crossing was probably used by miners or trappers moving between the supply point at Buena Vista to the eastern reaches of Taylor Park. There are stunning views of the Three Apostles mountains from the top, which is not visible until the very last quarter-mile of the hike. Due to the unusual geographic nature of the Continental Divide here, a panoramic view of many divide peaks can be had from this point.

Today's visitors can make an easy hike to Browns Pass, Hartenstein Lake, Browns Cabin, or Mount Yale—all are available from one trailhead point. This is one of the more popular hiking areas away from the Front Range.

© Article copyright Pruett Publishing.


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