California Gulch

Total Miles


3935.24 ft


1 Hours

Technical Rating



Best Time

Summer, Fall

Trail Overview

This trail starts at the Animus Forks Ghost Town, and the start of the famous Alpine Loops. This is a remote and beautiful drive that passes by many old mining buildings. Make time to stop for the outstanding vistas. This trail is not passable in the winter.


Easy. Road is in good condition most of the summer. Heavy snow on east side of California Pass is usually plowed by late June. Low range recommended for upper portion of trail.


Animas Forks was active between 1875 and the early 1920s. In 1885, its summer population reached a high of 450 people. The Silverton Northern Railroad reached the town in 1904 when the giant Gold Prince Mill was built. The mill lasted only six years before it was closed.

Technical Rating


Access Description

From northeast end of Silverton, bear right on C.R. 2. Follow signs to Alpine Loop. After 11.4 miles, reach fork at Waypoint 01.