4 (0=Paved, 6=Very Difficult 4WD)
The road is rocky but seldom rutted. High clearance and good tires are necessary; 4WD and a short wheelbase are not.
From Durango or Bayfield, follow the signs to Lemon Reservoir. Continue past the reservoir, staying on the main road through some private property. The road re-enters National Forest, where mile markers start, then deteriorates dramatically as it turns east and uphill in a series of switchbacks. The trailhead is around 10 miles from the Forest boundary. With cautious driving, low-clearance vehicles can make it to mile 2, where there is parking for a couple of cars, but it may be wiser to park at the bottom. There is an unofficial trail that shortcuts many of the road's switchbacks.