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Willow Creek Trailhead
Added by BillMiddlebrook

Location:  Sangre de Cristo Range
14ers Served:  Challenger Point, Kit Carson Peak
Road Type:  2WD, rough dirt road 2   (0=Paved, 6=Very Difficult 4WD)
Easy 4WD may be required because the road often forms deep dips and portions are a bit steep.
Directions:  Take Colorado 17 to the town of Moffat. On the south side of town, look for a sign for the turn to Crestone. Turn east on the "RD T" road. You will soon see a Forest Service sign that says 15 miles to the South Crestone trailhead. Drive 11.4 miles to a road junction. Keep left and follow the main road into Crestone. In Crestone, turn right (east) onto Galena Street and the road will turn to 2WD dirt, with approx. 2 miles to go. When the road enters National Forest, it is labeled as the "South Crestone Road 949" and becomes more difficult but good-clearance vehicles should be able to make it to the end.
Winter Access:  Unknown
14er Trailheads on Google Maps
Date Status Information Posted By  Photos  Comments Likes Dislikes    
2015-03-08 Gated 1.7 miles from summer TH cbaker7565         
2014-09-03 Same as last.. I‘d call it a class 1 or class 1.5 road right now. Only a few little dips, but easily avoidable if you‘re worried at all. The Colorado College group did a stellar job. bdloftin77         
2014-09-01 Any car can make it to the TH. Lots of parking and a rest room. bking14ers         
2014-08-30 A group from Colorado College was fixing potholes and drainage issues around the road today. No problems getting to the parking lot with any vehicle right now. Jim Davies         
2014-08-22 Road leading up to trailhead was ‘washboarded‘, but no major issues or stoppages. 100-200 yards before getting to the parking lot, there are some very deep potholes that made driving a bit interesting. We were driving a Forester XT that‘s lowered with stiff suspension, and still made it without an issue though. We saw a Honda Accord in the parking lot, so it‘s definitely pass-able with about any vehicle. The bathroom was a welcome surprise, but no running water, and bring your own toilet paper. You‘ll need to pack out your trash of course. Mosquitos didn‘t seem to be a problem, and no bear issues. Laughing_Jackal         
2014-08-09 Either mosquitoes were attacking others or they‘ve calmed down now... only a couple bites and used repellant once at end of trip (breaking down camp). Friday, 3pm, parking lot was already pretty full. Just b/c road is relatively easy as 14-er TH roads go, don‘t drop your guard. While avoiding some ruts in the center of the road we didn‘t notice a big rock on the side (I swear it jumped out at my tire). Oops. MissH  1       
2014-07-14 Washboards and some potholes, but any passenger car could make it. Beware of the mosquitoes at the TH!! addrock528         
2014-07-06 Accessible by any vehicle. A few holes and washboards were not a problem. Tornadoman         
2014-05-26 Road open. Would not boot up until around 11K right before first waterfall and trail kicks to the east. Snow after that, but kinda dries up once you cross back to the N side of the river freeinthehills         
2014-05-25 Road is freshly graded and in great shape. A 2wd car can make it to the top. In much better shape than a year ago. nyker         
2014-04-08 Drivable all the way to the TH; 4wd not necessary. SherpaSara         
2013-09-02 There is a new grocery store the last building on the north as you leave Crestone toward the trailhead. A very nice restroom. It didn’t have a sign up yet, except a neon OPEN. Road is in excellent shape and anything should be able to make it up. 2Giowa         
2013-07-21 Road was an easy 2wd road. Any car could make it up it. Not sure why the approach says good clearance is a good idea. Any clearance will work. MartyWells    1      
2013-07-02 Spoke with the Rio Grande National Forest HQ office today and they confirmed the road to the trailhead is now open as it was scheduled to be after the improvements/maintenance. randalmartin    1      
2013-06-26 Willow Creek TH road is closed 0.8 miles out of Crestone or about 1.5 miles from the TH. The road is to open July 2nd based on the Forest Service website. The road has been completely re-done with about a foot of new road base added for a smooth road surface. For now, two wheel drive cars should have no problem although the road is still posted for 4WD use. There appears to be several pullouts for camping on the approach to the TH. The angle of the TH parking lot is not flat so it may not be ideal for sleeping there. Blue Knight         
2013-05-22 Trailhead will be closed to public vehicle access between May 29 and July 3 for reconstruction of the road and construction of trailhead toilet. I‘m forwarding a copy of the closure notices to Bill for posting. SteveBonowski    2      
2013-05-22 The Rio Grande National Forest will close FSR 949 and the trailhead from May 29 until July 3 (at the latest) for road work and trailhead maintenance. The closure extends 300 feet from centerline of the road and the trailhead. Alternative access routes to the trail are possible but require crossing private land. For latest info call the Saguache Ranger District at 719-655-2547. mblakeman         
2013-05-17 The road is in poor condition this spring. It‘s dry right now but has some deep ruts on the last mile. 4WD is recommended. Let‘s hope they fix is soon... BillMiddlebrook         
2012-09-09 I made it up to the TH just fine in both mid August and yesterday. I drove my Acura CL coupe (think Honda Accord) and there‘s only one place that required any thought. Take it far right on the ascent and power through at a reasonable speed; too slow and you‘ll spin your tires, too fast and you‘ll probably smash your front end. Other than that drive over any exposed taller rocks with your tires, i.e. don‘t expose the underside of your engine compartment. Anyway, I‘ve been on far worse roads. Just my experience, use your judgment. TomPierce         
2012-07-01 There is really only one section of the road past the 4WD sign that is difficult, and it is where a lot of people turn off to the left to park. Past this point (and up to it pretty much), the road seems like "rough 2WD." I parked my CR-V below the obstacle because it does look pretty gnarly, but I actually saw a Kia sedan at the TH. Not sure how they made it, but I guess it can be done. leggaj5         
2012-06-12 Im not shure how people are getting so far down the road to the trailhead in cars... we tried to go further down the road and park at the parking lot about .42 miles before the trailhead but after scratching ugly in our 05 mustang had to turn back and park by the sign that says 4 wheel drive only (i guess thats why the signs there lol) trail is well maintained the southwest conservancy was out there working on the trail we only went to willow park but the weather was ok a little hot for my taste during the day not too cold, a bit of mosquitos after sunset though Davidbee0233  1       
2012-05-26 I made it in a 2WD Civic with really low clearance to .42 shy of the trail head. Good clearance will have no problem getting all the way to the TH. There was 6-8 4WD at the TH saturday Stevo         
2012-04-01 Road is clear and dry to the trailhead. Seems a bit more rough than previous years but good-clearance vehicles can make it to the end. BillMiddlebrook         
2011-09-28 Road is clear and dry. Only one place where a standard vehicle would have problems and that is .42 miles from the trail head. There is parking right there and that is where I parked my Prius. mrschaible         
2011-09-26 Drove to trailhead on 11/26 and it was dry and passable by any higher-than-normal vehicle. Might be a little slimy after a rain but should be fine when dry cfb         

Trial Head for Challenger Point &  Kit Carson Peak main Sign to Trail. (Added by: chris77780124 on 2010-07-13)Sangre de Crisio Wilderness Second Sign at Trail about .25 mile up. (Added by: chris77780124 on 2010-07-13)Willow Creek Parking Lot. (Added by: chris77780124 on 2010-07-13)Just abve Willow Creek Trail Head look back at Valley. (Added by: chris77780124 on 2010-07-13)Main Road to Willow Creek Trial Head 2 miles from Parking lot. (Added by: chris77780124 on 2010-07-13)

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