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post #1 of 13 (permalink) Old 04-20-2019, 12:29 PM Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Nov 2016
Location: Tennessee
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Taylor park trail recommendations

We're planning a family trip to the Taylor park CO area the end of June/early July of this year and I'm trying to put together a list of trails to hit while we're there. We have 7 or 8 days there (already got a cabin reserved at the Taylor Park trading post), but from everything I keep hearing, that wouldn't be enough to scratch the surface of what Colorado has to offer, which sounds great until you realize how overwhelming it is to plan with so many options available. I'm looking for kind of a "best of" sort of thing since this is most likely a once in a lifetime trip for us. If there are any must see/ride items or even warnings/advice I would love to hear it. Ideally I'd like to hit everything from ghost towns to abandoned mines, crawl some rocks, see some wildlife, ride up as high on the mountains as we can manage, and even hit an inhabited town or two for a lunch or dinner with local food if we can work it in somehow. The wife gets pretty nervous riding after dark even when we're around home, so it's day trips only, but hopefully that won't limit us too much. We live and ride in East Tennessee most of the time, but have also been to North Carolina, Kentucky, and northern Michigan multiple times each, and I was wheeling on quads for a couple decades before we ever got a sxs, so I feel like we're pretty well rounded as far as our ability to handle terrain. That being said though, I've only ever been to CO once and did a little hiking on foot outside of denver, so I'm not really sure what to expect from the ORV trails there. If this has been covered well somewhere else please let me know too, but otherwise fire away and thanks!
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post #2 of 13 (permalink) Old 04-20-2019, 08:38 PM
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Not a Taylor park expert, but I've been there elk hunting a couple times and took my Teryx there in 2012. My wife was more than a little nervous about my mountain driving skills, so we didn't do anything too wild. Cumberland pass is cool to see, but basically it's just a gravel road. Worth going just to drive through Tincup and eat at Frenchy's cafe. From Tincup there is a road that goes to Mirror lake and then an old mail route that goes up to Tincup pass. I remember at the time there was a easy route and a difficult route than involved some pretty big f##king rocks! I think if you continue on the trail over the pass it goes to a ghost mine, we never went that far. There is a trail guide available with maps and difficulty ratings, maybe from the Colorado tourism dept.?


Hope this helps a bit, have fun!!!!
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post #3 of 13 (permalink) Old 04-21-2019, 05:18 AM Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Nov 2016
Location: Tennessee
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When you say pretty big rocks, are we talking more like basketball, Volkswagen, or dump truck size stuff? I've ridden trails around me that had sections half a mile long or better that were nothing but rocks that would fill the bucket of a bobcat. It's the only time I've ever managed to actually break the T-Rex. Flat tire on a bent Douglas beadlock and blown out front inner CV joint. It was brutal and not fun at all. I wouldn't have normally even bothered, but I was riding with a new group on new to me trails and that's where they were going, so I didn't have much choice. I've got viking shocks with way more travel and 30's now, so I would probably have a lot better time if I did that trail again, but I still don't think I would if I was 24 hours from home like I will be in CO, so if that's what I'd be up against I may pass. In any case, yes, that does help. It's exactly what I was looking for in fact. As for the maps, I found a link for free maps from staythetrail.org, but it seems to be broken. I have BobT's maps of the area on a phone and tablet that we use for GPS and it usually works great, but I definitely want a paper map as a backup too, so I'm open to suggestions about where to get good ones. Free would be great, but I consider them to be pretty important, so I'd be willing to pay if necessary to get good, reliable, complete ones.
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post #4 of 13 (permalink) Old 04-21-2019, 07:31 PM
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The "difficult" route on the Tincup Pass trail had rocks that at the time appeared to be pretty serious rockcrawling shit to me. The easy way around was just rough, but I was in a stock 2011 Teryx, you have a much more capable machine. I think there is some kind of Colorado off-road or trail association that has some quality maps with trail ratings. I would send you mine if I could find it in my unorganized POS!
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post #5 of 13 (permalink) Old 04-24-2019, 09:43 AM Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Nov 2016
Location: Tennessee
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Anybody got experience with these maps?

https://www.latitude40maps.com/crest...r-park-trails/

A thumpertalk forum member recommended them pretty highly, but I'd love to hear from anybody that has used them for ATV/SXS trails.

Also, does anybody know what the deal is with Taylor park trading post. I've been trying to call them for weeks, but I only get messages that they're closed and/or pending sale. Initially I just wanted to reconfirm our reservations, but I could also really use a local's take on the expected state of the trails at the end of june-early July when we'll be there since I keep hearing about the tons of snow they got this year.
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post #6 of 13 (permalink) Old 04-25-2019, 03:57 PM
 
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Get the book “ATV trails Colorado, Crested Butte Talor Park”. It has all the trails in there with difficulty ratings. Jeeps and hiked most if not all about 50 or so years ago. (yes I am older than dirt) We did Tincup 2 years ago from the St. Elmo side to Mirror Lake. Difficult but the it was raining and snowing most of the day. The top 1-1/2 miles on both sides are the hardest.
Woul recommend Italian Creak or extreme difficulty is Taylor Pass to Ashcroft. Did Taylor Pass in a stock Jeep Cherokee in 1986.
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post #7 of 13 (permalink) Old 04-25-2019, 04:44 PM Thread Starter
 
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That looks like it would be great for planning routes ahead of time. I would definitely still want something that we could keep in a glove box too though. Tech (GPS) is always subject to failure and I want a backup for an unfamiliar area like this.
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post #8 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-12-2019, 09:41 AM Thread Starter
 
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I just wanted to give this thread a bump. We've got a little over 2 weeks before we head out and I'm still very interested in any trail recommendations. The Taylor park trading post is back open and answering phones under their new ownership and claim to have maps, which is good, but I won't be able to see what they have until I get there. Ideally I'd like to come up with a number of loops that would keep us from backtracking and be comfortably doable in a day before dark. A heads up on what trails are still closed for snow, or any other reason, would be priceless too if one of you locals sees this in time. Thanks!
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post #9 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-13-2019, 02:56 PM
 
Join Date: Jan 2016
Location: Jamestown, NC
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I have been there twice and made some nice videos (edited with music) of some of the trails. Links are below. Also, you can get very accurate Garmin maps and Android BackCountry Navigator and Orux app maps at this link. Highly recommend the Funtrek books. Also, we with trailered to Crested Butte one day to ride the Devil's Punch Bowl (1.5 hour drive there)

Link to Map Instructions and file links.
BCN, Orux, Garmin, and Apple Map Plus Map Files and Instructions 060719

Mt. Antero Video - Can't be afraid of heights (it is past Tincup)

Upper Italian - gets real interesting half way in

Devil's Punchbowl - nerve racking (I don't like heights or edges)

Flag Mountain - easy with great view
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post #10 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-14-2019, 05:23 AM Thread Starter
 
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That's awesome Bob! Thank you! Just to be clear, where exactly was the "PF 15" at and do you think it would be easier or harder to get through with a lifted 65" wide machine? It's so hard to judge this stuff from pictures or even video sometimes. I've ridden trails that were rock wall on one side and cliff on the other before. At one point it was so narrow at a tight curve that we had to have guys holding the front and rear racks pulling to the inside away from the drop and most of the riders were off the machines working the throttle from in front just in case the bike went over anyway. 2 guys actually just turned around and went home right there after driving 2 hours to get to the park. Of course that was a while back and before the family started coming with me. Hopefully we won't run into anything quite like that on this trip.
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post #11 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-14-2019, 07:24 AM
 
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PF-15 was on Upper Italian. We rode a few years later on SxS's and it was a little easier. A couple were 64"
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post #12 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-14-2019, 07:44 AM Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Nov 2016
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Cool. Do you feel like it was worth the drive (and stress) to do the devil's punchbowl? And is trailering out there the best or only way to do it starting from the Taylor park trading post? It looks like a pretty cool thing to see and is on our list, but there are so many cool things on the list. Anyway, thanks again! BTW, those GPS maps look great! I ordered the map book that davfuhr recommended, but haven't received it yet. From their website it looks like the funtreks maps could be really good too. I especially like the estimated times to do each trail. That kind of info is priceless for planning a trip and I'll be ordering them today.
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post #13 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-14-2019, 01:42 PM
 
Join Date: Jan 2016
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I think it was worth the trip. We ate breakfast in a nice little restaurant in Crested Butte. There is a nice steak place on the way back, it is on my map.
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