Fern Creek Trail/Ruby Lake

  • Creede
Elevation: 9300-12000
Access:
  • Horseback
  • Hike
  • Mountain Bike
  • Motorcycle/Dirtbike
  • ATV
Seasonal Accessability:
  • Late Spring/Summer/Fall
Water Type:
  • Lake/Pond/Reservoir
  • Stream/Creek
  • High Mountain
Driving Directions:

From the town of Creede, travel west on State Highway 149 for 16 miles. Turn left and travel to the southwest on Forest Road 522 (Fern Creek Road) for 1.5 miles to the trailhead.

Hiking Directions:

The Fern Creek trail is 12.5 miles long. It begins at Forest Road 522 and ends at Forest Trail 814. The trail begins by making a rather steady and strong 3.7 mile climb towards Little Ruby Lake. After reaching Little Ruby Lake, the trail grade flattens out, makes a short climb through a small patch of spruce, and then heads gradually downhill to Texas Creek. You enter the Weminuche Wilderness at Texas Creek. The climb out of Texas Creek is neither long nor difficult. For a mile beyond Texas Creek, the trail passes through flat plateau country known as California Park. It then makes a steep, winding descent through spruce timber and into Little Squaw Creek bottom. Shortly after reaching the scattered park-like area in the narrow Little Squaw Creek Canyon, the trail reaches the rickety old sheep bridge crossing. The trail passes through some fir-spruce timber stands and then cuts sharply up toward Chief Mountain. Once out of the timber, the trail continues to climb through some grassy parks for about another mile. The trail will begin heading down a small grass draw and shortly thereafter the trailhead will become evident. The trail continues downward at a gradual grade before reaching an old burn area where it makes a steep descent to the Squaw Creek Trail. The Fern Creek Trail is primarily used for access to the popular Ruby Lake Area. The best camping areas along this trail are between the Little Ruby Lake and Chief Mountain areas. The 1 to 1 ½ mile segment of the trail in the lower Chief Mountain area can be hard to follow as no defined trail exists. For best results, look for stock driveway markers on trees and posts. The trail is open the first 4 miles to Big Ruby Lake for the following uses: Horseback Riding, Off Highway Vehicles (OHV) less than or equal to 50 inches wide. After Big Ruby Lake, it enters the Weminuche Wilderness where it is Foot and Horse Travel only all the way over to Squaw Creek Trail.

Restrictions: Must have Colorado Fishing License to fish.
Description & Notes:

The Fern Creek Trail is primarily used for access to the popular Ruby Lake Area. The best camping areas along this trail are between the Little Ruby Lake and Chief Mountain areas. The 1 to 1 ½ mile segment of the trail in the lower Chief Mountain area can be hard to follow as no defined trail exists. For best results, look for stock driveway markers on trees and posts. The trail is open the first 4 miles to Big Ruby Lake for the following uses: Horseback Riding, Off Highway Vehicles (OHV) less than or equal to 50 inches wide. After Big Ruby Lake, it enters the Weminuche Wilderness where it is Foot and Horse Travel only all the way over to Squaw Creek Trail.

Fishing Locations