Frenchman Creek Trailhead
Added by BillMiddlebrook

Location:  Sawatch Range
14ers Served:  Mt. Harvard, Mt. Columbia
Road Type:  Easy 4WD, good clearance recommended. 3   (0=Paved, 6=Very Difficult 4WD)
Winter Access:  Unknown
Date Status Information Posted By  Photos  Comments Likes Dislikes    
2015-09-19 Dry and passable up to 4wd TH. RockCaCO3         
2015-09-06 Road dry and passable. Steep in places, but otherwise, not too bad for a 4x4 road. In stock Rubicon. RockCaCO3         
2015-08-01 Trailhead is open. There are only two areas on the 4WD road that are a bit tricky. There is a right hand turn going "up hill" that is a bit precarious. It is about a mile up the 2.2 mile 4WD trail. The only other comment I would make is that after you exit tree line the trail seems to disappear. Keep heading to your right as you ascend and look for a large carin. The trail wonders through a washed out stream bed. After you exit the stream bed the trail is self evident until you get to the first shelf of the meadow. Then it disappears again. I would suggest that you aim for the southerly ridge and follow it to the ridge that intersects the traverse from Columbia. Mully         
2015-04-11 Gate locked, clear road to 4WD. Continuous snow around 10,200 freeinthehills         
2015-03-15 Road is not passable beyond 8.7K and is officially closed to motor vehicles until June 15, although it is not gated. Flotation required beyond about 9.5K at the moment. Kevin Baker         
2014-07-12 Made it to the end of the road with a Subaru Forrester. Had to be careful in a couple of spots but totally doable. Could be done with a 2 wheel drive normal passenger car with good tires and a strong engine. rickinco123         
2014-02-17 Parked at the bottom of the road. The sign said "uphill traffic is closed to all vehicles". The road was icy/crusty. There is a snowmobile/ATV track for the first mile, then it turns to the right. Snowshoe trench continues to 10.5k, then the skin track. SnowAlien         
2013-12-22 Can only drive to ~8,500 which is below the gate. We put in a 1 foot deep trench to 11,000 feet in Frenchman Creek. Mickeys Grenade         
2013-06-23 I would highly recommend this trailhead. We had no visitors over the course of 1.5 days there. The trail is littered with downed trees, but still easy to maintain the course since it is a tight forming basin. The road to the 2WD trailhead is easy to access with all vehicles. The 4WD trailhead (~2.2 miles past 2WD) is steep at times, but not much in the way of boulders. I would suspect that most sedans could make it in dry conditions. There are no REAL switchbacks, but just the grade to consider. You can get away without high clearance so long as you are careful. Again, this is all if the conditions are dry. There is a campsite in the last grove of trees near 11,900 that is a fantastic jump off point for the climbs. mdfreiberg         
2012-12-28 Able to drive to the 386 / 387 junction in stock wrangler. This is about 1.4 miles from the hwy 24 turnoff. The road had snow on it the whole way, but it was nice and packed down from other vehicles. No one has driven up the road past this point and the road gets steep and rough quickly. Looks like this would be available all winter until they close the gate (.3 miles from hwy 24 turnoff) for elk migration. Round trip to Harvard summit is between 16 and 18 miles. Dad Mike    1      
2012-07-21 4WD road is clear all the way to the TH. Not too rocky, just quite steep and narrow in a couple spots. Maybe room for 3 vehicles at TH. Low gearing sure helps on the way up and especially on the way down. This is definitely a Level 3-4 difficulty TH. geojed         
2011-07-01 Road is dry all the way to the top. I would consider this a legit 3 out of 6 as it is currently ranked. The only other vehicles at the trailhead were jeeps and atv‘s. I drove a stock jeep wrangler and never bottomed-out. blacomb         
2010-06-26 The gate is open and the road is snow free and dry to the TH. JBS         
2010-06-19 The gate was still closed the morning of the 19th despite the sign claiming it would open on the 15th. atg200         
2010-05-15 The gate on the road is closed and will remail closed until June 15. Kevin8020         
2009-09-09 From Cty 386, road is fine up until the 4WD split, though there is one large bump at the beginning a passenger car may have trouble with. After the 4WD section, the road has a couple of steep rough, loose sections, where high clearance is needed, but mostly in decent shape. Few turnoffs though on the remaining 2 miles or so. nyker         
2008-06-30 First mile of FR 386 is steep and rocky but passable for a well-driven 2WD. Road is 4WD only from junction of FR 386 and FR 387. On the trail, between 10k‘ and ~11,400‘ the mosquitoes are at epidemic levels but more tolerable above treeline. Patchy snow begins around 10,800‘ but no flotation is necessary. Gahugafuga         

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