MOUNT PRINCETON HOT SPRINGS RESORT
Continental Divide Trail (South)
Length of Hike: 3-4 miles
This trail is part of the 3,100 mile Continental Divide Trail that follows portions of the Colorado Trail across the state. Mountain scenery abounds along the hike. Approximately 2.5 miles from the trailhead, you will see breathtaking views of Lost Lake (11,880 ft) on the left. Bull Moose have been seen swimming to the island in the middle of the lake, indicating part of his food source. An additional 1.5 mile hike will lead to is Spout Lake (11,867 ft.), which is a geologist’s mecca. There are many different forms of rock in this area. There are also wonderful views of nearby Jones Mountain (13,221 ft) and Mt. Kreutzer (13,093 ft).
Although this hike starts at a high elevation, it is a good 1st hike for those visiting from much lower altitudes. The elevation gain along the way is very moderate, and the hike provides beautiful views, allowing you to get acquainted to physical activity at a higher elevation.
Directions to Continental Divide Trail (South):
This trail is 19.5 miles west on Buena Vista on CR 306. This moderate route starts above timberline at the left side of Cottonwood Pass (12,119 ft) parking lot. A sign reading “Atlantic/Pacific” in the lot is where you start to the south. (35-minute drive time from Mount Princeton Hot Springs Resort)
From the resort, CR 321 will take you up the hill and intersect with CR 306 just after Mt. Olivet Cemetery. Turn left on CR 306 – you will find the parking area on the left side of the road.
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)
12 popular trailheads in the Nathrop area with hikes for all abilities and age levels. Surrounding areas have additional options for exploring our beautiful valley.