Italian Creek, Reno Divide

Popular recreation area with lots of options for connecting routes.

Total Miles
30.5
Plan with onX Offroad

Elevation
3667.65

Duration
3 to 5

Technical Rating
6/10

Best Time
Summer/Fall

Trail Overview

Plan on spending some time in this popular recreation area with lots of great rides and options for alternative routes. Visit American Flag Mountain for beautiful views. The connecting Reno Divide is very remote, so plan accordingly. Lots of great camping opportunities along the trail. If Cement Creek is closed (typically March to May) use Reno Ridge Road to access Taylor River Road.

Difficulty

Difficult. A narrow, remote road with steep climbs and potential mud bogs in wet weather. Becomes difficult in rainy weather especially in early part of summer. Aggressive tire tread is very important. Side trip to American Flag Mtn. is a steep climb up a slippery shale slope. Do not drive this trail alone. Upper Reno Divide 642 crosses a dangerous rocky ledge across talus slopes.

History

As mining boomed in Aspen, Crested Butte and Taylor Park in the early 1880s, roads connecting these areas were needed. Taylor Pass Road provided Aspen with access to Taylor Park, but it didn't help Crested Butte. Consequently, a road over Reno Divide was built soon after Taylor Pass. Both roads soon became obsolete when railroad service reached Aspen and Crested Butte. One hundred thirty years later, the roads remain open for recreational use. The 3-part loop of Trails 32, 33 and 34 remains one of the best 4WD trips in the USA.

Access Description

From Taylor Park Reservoir: Take Taylor River Road, F.S. 742, north from reservoir about 12 miles and turn left on Italian Creek Road, F.S. 759. If you reach Dorchester Campground, you've gone too far. From Crested Butte: About 7 miles south of Crested Butte on Hwy. 135, head north on Cement Creek Road.

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