Hayden Pass

Total Miles
16.1

Elevation

3,263.23 ft

Duration

2 Hours

Technical Rating

5

Moderate

Best Time

Summer, Fall

Trail Overview

This is a fun trail that starts climbing the north face at the Forest Service campground. The area is in recovery from a fire, and some wildflowers are beginning to grow back. If you want to picnic, you'll find a great little spot just left of Villa Grove.

Photos of Hayden Pass

Hayden Pass
Hayden Pass
Hayden Pass

Difficulty

Moderate. Steep with ruts and embedded rock. Best done when trail is dry in the summer. In the fall, water pools on the road near the pass and can freeze at night, creating dangerous patches of ice on a narrow shelf road. High-clearance 4-wheel drive with low range recommended.

History

In the 1870s, long before Highway 50 was built, a very different road system existed in Colorado. At that time Villa Grove was a major mining supply center linked to a network of roads created by Otto Mears. (Trail #49 in this book is also known as the Otto Mears Toll Road.) Hayden Pass was the main route to Villa Grove from the east. In 1938, one alternative for construction of Highway 50 included going over Hayden Pass. This plan was killed because the road would bypass Salida. (Source: www.route50.com/history.htm, 'A Brief History of America's Backbone,' by Alvin Edlund Jr.)

Technical Rating

5

Status Reports

Ricky Jenkins
Mar 23, 2024
SxS
Open
Snow/Ice
The trail had very deep snow. My turbo S on 35s made it, however my dad’s stock XP1000 could not.
Michael Deherrera
Feb 18, 2024
4x4
Open
Snow/Ice
Deep snow, got stuck immediately and was aired down to 20psi.
Steven Cotta
Nov 23, 2023
4x4
Open
Snow/Ice
Rough/Deteriorated
Michelle Kinsey Bruns
Oct 06, 2023
4x4
Open
Normal

Access Description

Take Route 50 west from Pueblo or south from Salida. Turn south at Coaldale 0.7 mile west of mile marker 242.

Popular Trails