Kilpacker basin Trailhead
Info

Location

Range: San Juan Mountains
Coordinates: 37.79704, -108.03892
14ers: El Diente Peak, Mt. Wilson, Wilson Peak
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Road Difficulty

Easy 4WD, good clearance recommended. 3   (0=Paved, 6=Very Difficult 4WD)
2WD Dirt

Driving Directions

From Telluride, drive south on Colorado 145 to Lizard Head Pass. Continue south for 5.2 miles and turn right onto Forest Road (FR) 535. Drive 5 miles on the 2WD dirt road to reach the signed, Kilpacker trailhead on the right.

Winter Access

Usually closed a short distance up the 535 road - miles below the TH.
Status Updates 
  
Posted By: mtgoatmike
Info: Road is in great condition, aside from a few large potholes. Smooth driving for all vehicles! Leaves are in peek peepin’ condition!
 
Posted By: LetsGoMets
Info: Moderate 2WD. Normal rocks, bumps and potholes.
 
Posted By: jdenavit
Info: No issue in a Tesla model 3. Definitely accessible to passenger cars if youre careful and slow.
 
Posted By: MountainBuhn
Info: Definitely roughish the first 1.5, then potholes the rest. Easy in a Crosstrek. Saw a few sedans there so Id still go for it if you have one. Just be careful and drive slow on the slightly rutted and rocky sections. Busy weekend for camping at the TH, but its by far the most beautiful TH outside of Mt Lindsey, Yankee Boy, or American Basin, IMO.
 
Posted By: JROSKA
Info: I did fine in a Jeep Cherokee but both me and my hiking partner were surprised at the poor condition of the road for the first 1.5 miles relative to the description. The last 3 miles or so are ok and its not to say its impassible for a passenger car. Id be careful though. This seems like at least a Subaru road. We did not see any 2WD passenger cars at the TH on Friday.
 
Posted By: toxqan
Info: While somewhat wet, with numerous water filled pot holes, I had no problems reaching the trailhead in a RAV4. The road did seem more pitted on the way out from recent rain. Although the road is a little rough in areas I imagine most passenger cars can reach the trailhead.
2 
Posted By: ScreeSurfer
Info: Was able to drive all the way to Kilpacker Basin Trailhead in a Honda Passport Friday night, a little bit of drifting in the high meadow a mile short of the Trailhead made it a bit challenging (a Subaru Crosstrek was not as lucky on Saturday as it was stuck and abandoned in the middle of the road). Although I stopped at Kilpacker, their were plenty of tracks leading further west on Dunton Road.
 
Posted By: Kiefer
Info: Dunton Road isn’t plowed, ever. The trailhead starts at CO. 145. Road is old snow. Not packed. Posthole maybe a few inches, so not bad. Some melted out, muddy spots but all lower down. Snow depth increases (on the road) the further one hikes towards Kilpacker.
Room at the trailhead for 3-4 cars at most.
1 
Posted By: CO_GPS_Guy
Info: Gravel road from highway to trailhead is dry and in great shape. Several recent fallen aspen trees cut up and cleared off road. Easily driven in low clearance/2WD vehicles.
 
Posted By: Misi197
Info: Road is good to go. A little rocky and bumpy at places, but pretty much any vehicle can make it up there at present.
 
Posted By: KY Climber
Info: The road to the Kilpacker trailhead is now completely free of snow.
 
Posted By: annsparks
Info: Current conditions 2.5 miles from Kilpacker trailhead when coming from Telluride. Deep
snow in patches then solid snow after that for as far as I could see. No car tracks after the point I turned around.
1 
Posted By: dwoodward13
Info: Easy passenger car access
 
Posted By: mtn_clmbr
Info: Dry the whole way as of 5-18
 
Posted By: RWSchaffer
Info: Wheeled vehicles park at CO 145. Snow machines and foot traffic will find mostly continuous groomed snow plus snowmobile tracks to the trailhead and beyond, though the first mile of road is somewhat icy and occasionally melted out.
 
Posted By: Randy1983
Info: Road is still open, dry and in great shape all the way to the trailhead parking lot.
 
Posted By: kayleenann8
Info: Road is dry and in great shape. Plenty of spots to camp at TH. Put in your GPS coordinates so you don’t blow by the turn off in the dark.
 
Posted By: MountainMo
Info: Dunton Road in good shape, any 2wd vehicle can make it to the trailhead.
 
Posted By: alsrun
Info: I just received an email from someone who took the first turn off below Lizard Head and he made it to the KTH without any problems.
 
Posted By: alsrun
Info: I just spoke with the Dolores Ranger Dist. and they said the only way to get to the Kilpacker TH is to use the Dunton Rd. turnoff below Rico then park at the Navajo Lake TH and hike to the KTH. Apparently there are two washouts. One between Navajo Lake and Kilpacker THs and one between the Kipacker TH and route 145. I believe the hike from Navajo Lake TH, using the Navajo trail, to the main stream crossing on the Kilpacker trail would be roughly the same as hiking from NLTH to KTH and then to the major stream crossing(around 5 miles). You are able to hike between NLTH and KTH but you can‘t drive it.
 
Posted By: alsrun
Info: The Dunton Rd. turn off that is 5.2 miles below Lizard Head Pass will be closed for 2 weeks about 2 miles in starting 09/06/2016. There is another turn off for 535 below Stoner that will get you to this TH. Since you will come to the Navajo Lake TH first, you can park there because the Navajo Lake trail cuts into the Kilpacker trail. If you need more details the Dolores Ranger Dist. number is 970-882-7296.
 
Posted By: bdloftin77
Info: Rained recently, so some big puddles on the Kilpacker turnoff. Trailhead accessible via any car. (I did it yesterday with a 2wd Toyota Echo sedan)
 
Posted By: jeffs
Info: Road was clear to the TH. Passed a Mini Cooper and a Mustang convertible with the top down on the way out!? I’m not sure the road is THAT smooth....
 
Posted By: drhansenej
Info: Hit continuous old snow drifts across the road at about 2.3 mi from TH. Looks like someone tried to drive across the first drift unsuccessfully, the tire tracks barely made it halfway.
 
Posted By: DoctorBreaks
Info: Per Norwood Ranger District the road is clear to the TH
 



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