Pets allowed
Elevation Gain
3,184.00 ft (970.48 m)
Trail type
15.20 mi (24.46 km)
Please respect the outdoors by practicing Leave No Trace. Learn more about how to apply the principles of Leave No Trace on your next outdoor adventure here.

Completed in 1987, the Colorado Trail stretches 485 magnificent miles from Denver to Durango. Along the way it meanders through high alpine mountains and valleys, offering a glimpse at some of the finest terrain Colorado has to offer. It traverses eight mountain ranges, six wilderness areas and stays above 10,000’ for the majority of the trail. Highlights include the Collegiate Range, where multiple 14ers are just off trail and can easily be climbed, and the San Juans, where the trail remains above tree line for days at a time and climbs to elevations of over 13,000’. There is also abundant wildlife along the Colorado Trail, ranging in size from small pika and marmot, to bear and moose.

The trail is divided into 28 different segments, each beginning at a trailhead accessible by vehicle. This accessibility is what makes the Colorado Trail special. Day hikers and section hikers can easily find their way to new segments of trail, while thru hikers can still enjoy a wild and rugged four to six week journey. Below is a description for Colorado Trail Segment 16.

Segment 16 begins from Marshall Pass Trailhead. You’ll follow enjoyable single track trail for the first couple miles, then it’ll turn to double track for a bit.

The trail passes in between the summits of Headwaters Hill and Windy Peak. The tread then turns back to single track for the remainder of the segment.

After Windy Peak you’ll descend a somewhat brutal section that is steep and very rocky. After this the trail thankfully mellows out a bit. You’ll follow a ridgeline, topping out on several small summits along the way. There are some good views in spots, and one exceptionally beautiful Aspen Grove that you’ll walk through.

The trail then leaves the ridge and descends down to Tank Seven Creek. There is a great campsite here with room for multiple tents.

You’ll then continue following Tank Seven Creek upstream through a nice valley. The trail then eventually opens up into a massive meadow area. This stretch is quite beautiful, with high mountain peaks visible all around.

Segment 16 then ends at the Sargents Mesa Trailhead.

Logistics + Planning

Preferable season(s)




Parking Pass


Open Year-round



A lovely large meadow with mountain views at end of segment. Some good camping in areas.


One particularly steep and rocky descent in the middle of the segment.

Trailhead Elevation

10,836.00 ft (3,302.81 m)

Highest point

11,722.00 ft (3,572.87 m)


Backcountry camping
Big vistas

Typically multi-day


Permit required



Nearby Lodging + Camping

Sawatch Range + Elk Mountains, Colorado
Sawatch Range + Elk Mountains, Colorado
Grand Mesa Uncompahgre + Gunnison National Forests


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