MOUNT PRINCETON HOT SPRINGS RESORT
Length of Hike: 52 miles (Salida Ranger District)
Difficulty Level: Moderate
Like its namesake, Rainbow Trail arcs through the Sangre de Cristo mountain range providing roughly 100 miles of outdoor fun all the way to the Great Sand Dunes in Alamosa, Colorado. It is used by hikers, horseback riders, and bikers. Several beaver ponds are located along the trail making pools for the occasional moose that are seen in the area. Along the way it alternates climbs and descends through pine and aspen forest, crossing several small creeks and rolling through high alpine meadows with phenomenal views of Mt. Ouray (13,961 ft). This trail was built to enable firefighters to access fires when necessary.
Directions to Rainbow Trail
From Mt. Princeton Hot Springs Resort, take CR 162 East to Hwy. 285. Hwy 285 South will intersect with Hwy. 50 in Poncha Springs; turn left. Turn right on CR 101 and travel south for 3.5 miles, crossing a cattle guard near the boundary to the National Forest. The last 1.5 miles to the trailhead are rough and will require a high clearance or 4-wheel drive vehicle. (30-minute drive from Mt. Princeton Hot Springs)
10 Hiking Essentials
- Water (1.5 Liters per person per 5-6 hours)
- Snacks (Beef Jerky, nuts, power bar)
- Navigation (map and compass and/or GPS)
- Extra clothing (hat, socks, gloves)
- First aid supplies
- Light (headlamp or flashlight)
- Fire starter and matches/lighter
- CD Rom or mirror, whistle, mosquito repellant
- Emergency shelter (Biffy Bag)
You are starting your adventure at roughly 8,000ft.
You are likely going to an even higher altitude – hydration is key.
Water, Water, Water!
This activity is an extreme test of a person’s physical and mental limits and carries with it the potential for property loss, serious injury, and even death. The risks include, but not limited to: actions of other people, lack of hydration, weather, and/or other natural conditions. Princeton Holdings, LLC DBA Mt. Princeton Hot Springs Resort is not liable for any injury, property loss, damage, death, etc. occurring due to any activity outlined by any information sheet provided by the property. Guests are participating in these activities on their own merit and assume all liability, with no liability to Mt. Princeton Hot Springs Resort or its agents.