Santa Fe Peak
Summit County, Colorado
White River National Forest
Dillon Ranger District
View this on the Colorado Trailheads Map
Forest Service Road: 264
Trail Type: Out and Back
Nearby Towns: Montezuma, Keystone
Nearby Trails: Webster Pass, Peru Creek, Hunkidori Mine, Saints John,Deer Creek
Trail Length: 5.12 miles
Elevation: 10,386 to 13,160 feet
This special trail is close to Denver and many other trails, and it puts you high on top of a mountain over the course of a very short and fairly easy trip. Winter comes early and stays late on this trail, so you may only be able to safely run it in the middle of the summer.
It starts at the stop sign on the main road in Montezuma. Head east at the stop sign to start the trail. It starts in a residential area and soon begins climbing, so you may want to air down and disconnect sway bars at the parking area at the Peru Creek trailhead that is just down the paved road from Montezuma.
There are many switchbacks at the start, but most are wide enough for passing other vehicles. The trail is fairly easy though bumpy in spots. You climb through pine trees and soon there are views of the mountains around you.
When you come out of the trees you will be on a fairly straight and exposed section of the trail. If there is snow here you will probably want to turn around because the trail will be very dangerous if you continue. This is a good spot to make this decision.
At the next switchback is the Quail Mine, ruins that are not really worth exploring. Continue on and the trail climbs even higher. There are many exposed shelf roads, and some can be a bit intimidating.
Another flat spot in the trail provides some great scenery. You can see the town of Montezuma below you as well as the valley on the other side.
The trail past this point is a bit rockier, and in some sections it is narrow with a severe drop off to one side. Work your way around the trail carefully, especially if it is wet.
When you reach the top of Santa Fe Peak you can turn around here, or approximately three vehicles can continue down the other side for a short patch of switchbacks. The trail ends above the Silver Wave Mine at a turnaround spot that does not hold many vehicles.
Return the way you came, enjoying the views on the way down.
Information last updated on September 25th, 2011.
Member ReportsSeptember 24, 2011: ran by Bill S., Hoa, Mark F., Matt K.,Mike S., Monica, Roger and WaltSeptember 12, 2009: ran by Bob R., Bob S., Gary, Ladd,Monica, Roger and Walt
From Denver, take Highway 6 to Keystone and follow signs to Montezuma Road. Follow the pavement until it ends at dirt roads and the tiny town of Montezuma. Turn left at the main stop sign in the middle of town.
Meet in Downieville at the Starbucks.Low-End Rating:3High-End Rating:4Rock Crawling: