Wigwam Trail in Colorado’s Lost Creek Wilderness Area

Wigwam Trail in the Lost Creek Wilderness Area offers an intimate rendezvous with Nature on the eastern slopes of Colorado’s Rocky Mountains in Pike National Forest.

Towering, heavily wooded mountain peaks shelter peaceful valleys exploding with the colorful summer blooms.  Rounded granite domes, knobs, spires, and arches tower over pristine creeks and rivers. 

This winter’s heavy snows on the Platte River, Kenosha, and Tarryall Mountain Ranges overflow in runoff streams, suddenly disappear below granite rock piles and reappear a few hundred feet later. This unique feature is why the area is called Lost Creek.

Wildlife is abundant and I rarely saw people although I was plenty entertained.

The area hums with life night and day. Bighorn sheep, deer, elk, and bobcats share the region with black bear. Owls, chickadees, bluebirds, woodpeckers, hawks, and eagles care for hatchlings in early summer nests.

Vegetation includes a variety of pine, aspen, spruce, fir, and alpine tundra. Profuse blooming flowers with a backdrop of piney mountains fill the soul with wonder and gratitude.

Hiker’s Paradise

Wildlife is abundant, people are scarce, and 136 miles of hiking trails traverse this 120,000-acre paradise. Of those trails, 105 miles fall within the wilderness boundary where motorized vehicles are not allowed. 

It’s hoof or foot travel only and Rocky and I had plenty of company, but never saw another human on the trails.

The mountains tower between 8,000 and 12,400 feet in the Lost Creek Wilderness Area in the Pike South Platte and South Park National Forest Ranger Districts between Denver and Colorado Springs.  

Wigwam Trail and Camping

Wigwam Trail (#609) Dispersed Camping and Trailhead is a sheltered, heavily wooded trail paralleling Wigwam Creek through the Lost Creek Wilderness Area.  

This moderate to difficult 11-mile trail has elevation ranges from 8,160 feet to 10,170 feet at Wigwam Peak. 

This trail in the Lost Wilderness Area survived the fires of 2003 intact and now provide shelter for wildlife displaced by the loss of habitat.

Wigwam Trail (#609) intersects the north end of Goose Creek Trail (#612), and the south end of Rolling Creek Trail (#663). It accesses Lost Park Meadow and connects to the McCurdy Park Trail.    

Dispersed Camping

Dispersed camping is available to set up base camp at the edge of the wilderness area. 

Fortunately folks who use this area take great care to practice “Leave No Trace” rules and philosophy, helping preserve this natural wonderland.

Backcountry water is available from Wigwam Creek that parallels the whole length of the trail. Lost Park Campground has potable water.  

How to get there

Coordinates: N 39.244058°, W 105.353329°

From Denver, take I-70 west to C 470 to US 285, traveling west for 23 miles to Pine Junction. Turn left at the town of Pine Junction onto Co 126, toward Pine and Buffalo Creek. Drive 21 .8 miles on Co 126. Turn left, traveling south on FS 211, which leads toward the Cheesman reservoir. Travel 2 miles and bear right at the sign pointing to Goose Creek. Drive 1.1 miles until you reach a fork, bear right on FS 560, and right at the next fork staying on FS 560. Drive 4 miles to the trailhead signs, turn left on FR 545, and drive 1 .3 miles to the trailhead.

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MiracleUpdate

Cindy Cason has been a print and broadcast journalist, magazine writer, communications director, and consultant. At home, she was a single mom to four busy and amazing kids. In a blink, they launched and she faced a quiet, empty home and another decade until retirement. She opted to sell the farm and embarked on a solo journey into the American wilderness, traveling in a tiny, offroad teardrop trailer pulled by a Subaru Outback. Today she spotlights the beauty of life in nature, hoping to inspire you to passionately live every phase of your own authentic life. Especially retirement...

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