Argentine Pass Trailhead


Range: Front Range
Coordinates: 39.60866, -105.79999
14ers: Grays Peak, Torreys Peak
Elevation: 11,050'
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Road Difficulty

Easy 4WD, good clearance recommended. 3   (0=Paved, 6=Very Difficult 4WD)
Easy 4WD (good-clearance recommended) up to the gate closure near Shoe Basin mine.

Driving Directions

This trailhead is used to access both Argentine Pass and Horseshoe Basin. Take U.S. 6 to the west end of Keystone. If you are driving east on U.S. 6, take the exit for Montezuma Road before U.S. 6 begins its climb to Loveland Pass. If you are driving west (from Loveland Pass), turn left into the River Run area of the Keystone Ski Resort. Take another quick left and drive a bit to get to the Montezuma Road. Drive ~4.3 miles on the Montezuma road and turn left on the 260 (dirt) road. There is a large parking area at the start of this road. From the parking area, drive 4.5 miles along Peru Creek to the Argentine Pass trailhead at 11,050', just below the Shoe Basin Mine. The road is gated beyond the trailhead.

Winter Access

The Peru Creek (260) road is closed at the start.

More Info

Parking: Parking area has room for 15 cars. After that you'll have to park along the road.
Restrooms: No
Camping: Dispersed camping along Peru Creek but it's popular on the weekend. No good camping spots near the trailhead parking.
Trailhead added by BillMiddlebrook
Status Updates 
Posted By: ryanmicj
Info: Went up here in a Subaru Outback on Sunday 8/19. Road was dry as a bone, except in a few low spots where water was running across the road through ruts. Lots of loose rock and gravel in spots, which would have caused a 2WD car to slip, but AWD seemed sufficient to get through. The road is wide enough to maneuver around some of the bigger obstacles, but decent clearance is recommended.
Posted By: ameristrat
Info: Went up to the TH yesterday in my 2WD Xterra. High clearance is an absolute necessity on this road. I don‘t think I would try it in any les than an xterra. areas in the road are heavily rutted and there are some large dips and rocks to contend with. The road is wide enough to skirt around the worst parts usually, but I would say this is borderline 4WD - I slipped in a few parts and had a to hit a few obstacles with momentum to avoid getting stuck. Not too much water on the road, but almost all of the dips had water in them.
The moral of the story is - CLEARANCE NEEDED.
Posted By: TravelingMatt
Info: Open and mostly dry to the summer trailhead. Some minor puddles and runoff. You want to park where there is a loop on the left side of the road and an old building visible a couple hundred feet ahead in the valley to the right. Beyond that is gated with no place to turn around. Road is rougher than I remember -- high-clearance will be OK, Subarus may have a few issues but should make it all the way and cars are no go after about halfway up.
Posted By: TravelingMatt
Info: The gate at Montezuma Road was opened today. Didn‘t go back there so not sure how far back you can drive. Other roads in the Montezuma area (Webster Pass, Deer Creek) are still gated.
Posted By: rsincavage
Info: Lots of water running down the road for the last 2 miles, as mentioned. All the erosion is making fairly substantial gullies in several spots- the worst one is about 1 mile from the trailhead. I didn‘t risk it in my Xterra as it was already getting late in the morning, but I saw a few guys make it through (after much contemplation and discussion) later in the day with a Tacoma (I think).
Posted By: 14erFred
Info: Dillon Ranger District states the Peru Creek road (FR 260) is now open. There is water running down the road for the last 2 miles below the Shoe Mine. But the road is reportedly passable for 4WD.
Posted By: nedryarson
Info: Ranger district states the Peru Creek road (FR 260) is closed indefinitely due to an avalanche near the Chihuahua Gulch trailhead.
Posted By: spontaneous weekends
Info: I can‘t understand what the sedan owners such as myself are talking about when they say this road is just fine for passenger vehicles. My ‘03 camry (in good condition) suffered terribly on this road and I had to back out which was tedious. This road is absolutely NOT meant for passenger vehicles! That is if you give a damn about your car. The Grays Peak road is a highway compared to this one!
Posted By: nedryarson
Info: Hiked up the road from near Chihuahua Gulch, and the reported washout near the Pennsylvania Mine has been repaired. The road is pretty rough, but can be done slowly with a smaller car (saw a Nissan Sentra at the Argentine trailhead just before the gate).
Posted By: DarwinCO
Info: Definitely some parts to take slow, but very doable in a 2WD - I do recommend a higher-clearance vehicle, but it can be done without.
Posted By: eagle06
Info: Made it all the way to Argentine trailhead with a Toyota Corolla. Should be fine for any small sedan.
Posted By: kimo
Info: Called Dillon RD on 6/15. The Peru Creek Road (260) is open into Horseshoe Basin.
Posted By: lurker
Info: road 260 still closed as of 6/8/2009 - did not hike up the road
Posted By: gettinupthere
Info: Hiked up Peru Creek from Montezuma Rd. on Sunday 5-10-09. Still plenty of snow on the road. Road 260 is not open yet and will probably stay closed until the end of the month. Snow is melting fast but quite a bit drifted on the road down in the valley. Looks like the road up to the Chihuahua Gulch trail head is pretty opwn and the SW slopes look clear of snow.
Posted By: Canman
Info: Drove to the mine/gravel pile in a 2WD on 7/29/08 and scraped bottom a little bit one time each going up and back-found gate still locked. The road is narrow in several spots and that caused problems meeting vehicles going the opposite direction. Found that there was more camping/exploring activity in this basin than climbing/hiking.
Posted By: JeffR
Info: Easily done in an Acura MDX all the way to the Shoe Basin Mine. Gate locked at that point.
Posted By: BillMiddlebrook
Info: Rode a snowmobile to 12,000‘ at the end of the road in Horseshoe Basin. Tough ride and deep snow but experienced riders (with a good mountain sled) can get all the way to the end for a short climb/ski of Grays.
Posted By: BillMiddlebrook
Info: While the road is closed for the winter, backcountry skiers and snowmobiles have packed down the first 3 miles of the road. A snowmobile cannot go too much further at this point.
Posted By: 5280Fotos
Info: The directions to trailhead posted on this site are solid. Peru Creek / 260 road are open as far up as your vehicle will take you. As the directions indicate 4WD & high clearance is needed for the last 2.5 miles up to the trailhead.
Posted By: JeffR
Info: The 260 road is closed to vehicles near the Pennsylvania Mine turnoff (10900’) for mine reclamation. There is a bypass through the construction zone for hikers only.
Posted By: BillMiddlebrook
Info: The 260 road is completely open to Horseshoe Basin. Drove to the HS mine today (6/.
Posted By: BillMiddlebrook
Info: As of 5/22 the gate is still closed at the start of the Peru Creek (260) road.
Posted By: BillMiddlebrook
Info: The road to Horseshoe Basin is closed in winter. It usually opens up in late May. There is a gate at the start of the road.
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