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Missouri Gulch Trailhead
Added by BillMiddlebrook

Location:  Sawatch Range
14ers Served:  Mt. Belford, Mt. Oxford, Missouri Mountain
Road Type:  2WD, easy dirt road 1   (0=Paved, 6=Very Difficult 4WD)
2WD dirt to the TH.
Directions:  From Leadville: Drive 20 miles south on U.S. 24 and turn right on the Chaffee County 390 road. From Buena Vista: Drive 14.5 miles north on U.S. 24 and turn left on the Chaffee County 390 road. On the 390 road, drive 7.5 miles to a sign for the Missouri Gulch trailhead. Turn left and drive down into the large parking area. There are restrooms here.
Winter Access:  Closed near 9,200 feet - almost 4 miles below the TH.
14er Trailheads on Google Maps
Date Status Information Posted By  Photos  Comments Likes Dislikes    
2012-04-07 Road open, dry to trailhead BillMiddlebrook         
2012-03-17 Drove all the way to the trailhead. Small amounts of snow on the road in a few spots. 4wd helpful due to snow/mud but 2wd will probably make it. oldschool         
2012-02-11 Road gets snow-covered and slick 4 miles from TH. We made it in our Mountaineer just before pair of hairpin turns about 2/3 mile before TH, but had to dig out three times to get there. Truck with chains only made it 1/2 mile before where we did. fallatj         
2012-02-11 Drove to a pull-out about 2.6 miles past the ranch turn-off in my Xterra, about 1.3 miles shy of the Missouri Gulch TH at Vicksburg. 4x4 definitely required past the ranch turn-off. One other SUV made it 0.7 miles further to the first switchback. There were no recent tracks past that point, but the road was still easy for walking on the old tire/snowmobile tracks. Kirk Mallory         
2012-01-29 We made it just fine to the TH in my Xterra. Most of the road it snowpacked with sled and tire tracks. The TH itself has very little tire tracks - anything but a 4WD would be questionable to make it. USAKeller         
2012-01-04 We made it all the way to TH on 390 with 2 4WDs and Front Wheel Drive Hyundai Sedan. Driver of the Sedan said there were a couple hills where you needed to make sure to have enough speed due to washboards and ice. TH parking is mostly packed snow so no problems there either. alpinenut         
2011-12-27 I drove my front wheel drive Honda Civic to the trailhead with no issue. The road was snow packed, but it very passable for my little passenger car. Freeze         
2011-12-21 I thought for sure by now and with the recent storms I wouldn‘t get much further than the Clear Creek Ranch. The road was absolutely fine though. Made it to the trailhead without problems in an AWD Volkswagon Passat. We were the only car there all day that I saw. I have no idea if the 390 gets worse down the road. The road is snow covered the entire way but was packed down enough to not cause any real problems. Artvandalay         
2011-12-17 Drove to trailhead in a honda frontwheel drive mini-van with no problems. Two cars were in the lot and tracks heading out on the trail. markforseth26         
2011-12-17 Passenger cars can probably still get to the TH, but use caution. tmathews         
2011-12-10 Road is drivable with a couple inches of packed snow. Didn‘t go to Winfield but expect it is passable based on how little snow there is at Missouri Gulch. Yikes         
2011-11-11 There is only about six inches of snow at the Missouri Gulch Trailhead, making it easily drivable in any vehicle. AW007         
2011-11-03 Drove all the way to the trailhead. Some snow on the road. I prob could have made it all the way in 2wd but did put it in 4wd towards the parking lot. oldschool         
2011-10-02 The dirt road to the TH is very well maintained. There is a little bit of washboard, but that is to be expected. There is one turn that has some more significant bumps, but nothing that a 2-wheel drive vehicle wouldn‘t be able to handle. Just don‘t go speeding in one section because it is smooth, because you might hit a bumpy section without much warning. The trailhead is to the left, right before the Vicksburg "museum" parking area. If you pass the museum parking area, you know you‘ve gone too far. GermanLovesHiking         
2011-09-29 The washboard was so severe that my off-road lights became loose and my cruise control stopped working. On some parts of the road I was certain the vehicle was about to come apart, plus I have Bilstein HD shocks which were probably about to commit suicide as they were unable to handle this road even though they are the most heavy duty 4x4 shock available. ColoradoLawDobe         
2011-08-27 When leaving 390, they were working the road...should be a bit less "washboardy" now. See picture. Derek  1       
2011-08-02 Road is in great shape except for some washboards. mrschaible         
2011-05-03 There are a couple small and easily avoidable snow covered areas on the side of the road (which should be gone within days unless it snows more), otherwise clear and passable for any vehicle all the way to the trailhead. Watch out for baseball to basketball sized rocks on the road along the lake. Ben    1    
2011-04-16 a two wheel drive vehicle can go 8 miles up 390 from 24 . If the 2wheel vehicle has low clearance their is one spot not far from the ranch that has about 20‘ of 8" snow other than that the road is only wet in places from melting snow. after the 8 miles 4wheel is needed.looks like it is melting fast. fepic1         
2011-01-29 Plowing stops at Clear Creek Ranch, 4 miles below the TH. Snowmobile track and packed snow all the way to the Missouri Gulch TH. A 4wd with high clearance and a skilled driver could maybe make it up. The snow was pretty thin along the road, but of course there are no guarantees of not breaking through. More snow will certainly change conditions, but it might be worth a shot. Some of the biggest drifts were along the first mile of road. Zambo  2       
2010-11-07 Clear summer conditions, small cars have no problem. hollamby         
2010-10-27 light covering of snow, but drivable w/ 2wd and good snow tires. markf         
2010-04-18 Open and dry all the way to the trailhead Yalegirl09         
2010-04-10 I drove my tacoma up to the historical site without any problems in the morning (~1 mile from the trailhead). A car with chains on the fronts was also nearby. Took me 20 minutes to hike to the trailhead on the crunchy snow. Someone in a larger vehicle had driven out past the trailhead. In the afternoon their tracks were really wet and slushy. Below the historical site the road had its soft, muddy spots for a couple miles but I made it down without any oh-crap moments. MarkMadness  2       
2010-03-28 Road is dry up to mile 4.0. You might be able to make another 0.5 miles if your vehicle is good on packed snow/ice, but seems like a good chance of getting stuck. From mile 4.5 until Missouri Gulch TH it is packed down by snowmobiles and you don‘t need snowshoes. There are zero dry sections from mile 4.0, so I don‘t think this is going to melt out anytime soon. Outhouse at TH is open and has TP. You will need snowshoes starting at the TH (I was sinking past my knees). Yikes         

In the parking area (Added by: BillMiddlebrook on 2006-06-21)In the parking area, looking at the area where the trail begins (Added by: BillMiddlebrook on 2006-06-21)Start of the trail (Added by: billmiddlebrook on 2007-06-21)Missouri Gulch Trailhead Map/Sign (Added by: Fleischco on 2007-08-17)

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