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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    
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         
2010-02-06 Three parties have got stuck in the snow in the last two weeks, about a mile past the ranch on 390. Plowed to the ranch, about 3 miles in. Folks have made it to 4 miles in, but have also got stuck there. I would park no further than 1/2 mile past the ranch, or just beyond the ranch to be on the safe side. One vehicle stuck was reputed to be a heavily modified Jeep. All were 4wd vehicles. Track looks benign, it‘s not. Dancesatmoonrise  1       
2010-02-01 Drivable with 4WD to 3.1 miles from the trailhead. SarahT         
2009-11-29 Went to Missouri Gulch yesterday (11.28.09) in a 2WD, 4 cyl. XTerra (basically a car that looks like a truck) and made it with ease. Some icy spots, but no real difficulty at all. reverette13         
2009-11-23 Trailhead is accessible by 2wd car with good tires. The road beyond the ranch is snowpacked, but easily driven. CO Native         
2009-09-08 On 8/31 and again on 9/3 drove Toyota Camry to TH. Dry and ample parking. jstouder         
2009-05-20 100% clear for all vehicles. Cars (even civics) have no trouble getting to trailhead. Snowshoes not needed for ANY of the standard route. Lyssah         
2009-04-25 Road is 100% clear to TH Alan Arnette         
2009-04-09 The road is clear to the trailhead. This may change if we get enough spring snow. BillMiddlebrook         
2009-03-15 2009-3-13 4WDable 0.8 mile past ranch entrance...shallow snow patches, mud. Perhaps further, but could see that someone got into trouble ahead, so turned around. Bio Nerd         
2008-12-11 As of 12/11 there is some snow but any reasonable vehicle should be able to make it to Missouri Gulch. theocdb3         
2008-11-20 Road and parking area were completely free of snow and passable for passenger cars George Kaplan         
2008-09-06 Be careful, 390 is washboard city... saw a vehicle lose control and they weren‘t even traveling too fast. Derek         
2008-07-24 Road very good to the large Missouri Gulch TH. Just a little bit of washboard along the south sides of the road. Markwise         
2008-05-30 As of Memorial Weekend, the road was completely clear and easily passible in 2WD (Nissan Sentra, though there were some watermelon size fallen rocks in the middle of the road at the bend near Clear Creek Ranch. Keep your eyes peeled. Steve Climber         

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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