This is a loop that features an optional hike to the very top of Sand Mountain at 10,863 feet. It's worth the extra effort. You'll love the panoramic views. There are some nice spots to camp along the trail, but you may just want to stay at Steamboat Lake State Park. Be sure to make a reservation if you plan on staying there. Trail is open July 1 to December 1.
From Steamboat Springs: Drive north on C.R. 129 about 23 miles. Turn left on C.R. 62 after The Clark Store. At 0.7 mile, turn right heading north on dirt road. Follow C.R. 62 another 8 miles. Watch for Mill Creek Road (F.S. 42) on the left. From Steamboat Lake State Park: From intersection of C.R. 62 and C.R. 129, head west about 3 miles to Mill Creek Road (F.S. 42) on right.