Horseshoe Pass


Horseshoe Pass - Lake / Park Counties - Colorado - 13,180 feet
Empire Gulch to west. Horseshoe Gulch to east

West of Fairplay via 4 Mile Creek Road.
off-road - dirt bike or dual sport

photos by Karst Postma, 8/2/2014


Almost there, last steep section, look to your right to bypass it.
 

Bypass for steep section.
 
 
 

Near the summit.
 
 
 
 

Snow removal on the bypass just before the summit. Note the scree on your left.

At the summit.
 
 
 
 

At the summit.
 
 
 
 

At the summit.
 
 
 
 

At the summit.
 
 
 
 

At the summit.
 
 
 
 

Notes from Karst:
Jeff Gronski, Paul Shushan and I finally made it to Horseshoe Pass after several failed attempts due to snow. A mile south of Fairplay turn west on to CR-18. The road starts paved, but gradually worsens until the turnoff for Horseshoe Pass. It never gets really bad, just rough. At N39 11 56.1 W106 09 03.3 turn left. The road to the pass is obvious from this turnoff. It is very rocky but doable on smaller dual sport bikes. Larger bikes can make it as well with sufficient rider skills and with a low 1st gear. The road is never steep until the last 100 yards. You will recognize this last very steep section when you are there. It is probably doable on a small bike with low gear. Twenty feet before this steep section you can see on your right faint tracks of the old road. Take this bypass to avoid the steep section. However, this bypass is also most likely the last place where the snow melts off. As you can see on the photos taken on 8/2/2014 we had to remove some snow to clear a path, but we made it. Do not get off the road here, the scree is treacherous.
This pass is most years only reachable after early of August.
Once on the summit you have some great views over Leadville and Turquoise Lake.

photos by Jeff Gronski, 8/2/2014


Near the summit.

Near the summit.

At the summit.

At the summit

photo by Karst Postma, 7/11/2013


Near the summit.
 
 

Google Maps

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Google Earth

Notes from Karst:
This is what we ran into 7/11/2013, about 2-1/2 miles from the summit. We saw very little snow, but the spot had collected snow from higher elevations and did not have a chance to melt away yet. Up to that point the road had been rough, but doable, even with a large bike.




Recognized in "The Passes of Colorado, An Encylopedia of Watershed Divides" by Ed Helmuth & Gloria Helmuth.
Is not included in United States Board on Geographic Names.

Other geographic features in the area, from United States Board on Geographic Names:
Feature Name ID Class County State Latitude Longitude Ele(ft) Map BGN Date Entry Date
Horseshoe (historical) 180239 Populated Place Park CO 391214N 1060507W 10558 Fairplay West - 13-OCT-1978
Horseshoe Claims Mine 1684828 Mine Park CO 391207N 1060818W 11909 Mount Sherman - 30-APR-1996


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2013-15 Randy Bishop
Last modified: January 2, 2015