North Sand Hills

Colorado's only open sand dune area.

Total Miles
5.8
Plan with onX Offroad

Elevation
2678.21

Duration
1

Technical Rating
3/10

Best Time
Jan/Dec

Trail Overview

The area has a network of challenging trails just north of the dunes. It is a long trek from the Front Range, but definitely worth it. You will find a lot of different options for camping, and it is a very popular area on weekends. Watch for postings of closed areas, bring your own firewood and pack out your trash.

Difficulty

Difficult. Varies from easy to difficult depending on where you go and the type of vehicle you are using. Easy where the sand is flat and packed. Difficult on steep slopes, especially in the trees, where sand is soft, windblown and constantly changing. Rating applies to introductory loop shown here. It is just a suggestion and does not have to be followed. If driving a full-size vehicle, make sure to air down your tires and use extreme caution. Great area for ATVs and UTVs.

Access Description

Take Highway 14 west from Fort Collins through Poudre Canyon. At Walden, head north on 125. About a mile north of Cowdrey, turn right on C.R. 6. Head east 3.3 miles and bear right on BLM Road 2509. After another 1.5 miles, bear left to main camping area near Toilet #1. (Right here goes to alternate starting point nearer the dunes.) Total distance from Fort Collins is about 115 miles. See Trail #2 for a fun back way into the dunes.

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