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Friends of Mount Evans and Lost Creek Wilderness
Lost Creek - Trail # 42

(Click Map for PDF)

Beginning Elevation: 9060
High Point: 10840
End Elevation: 10840
Difficulty: Moderate
Length, One Way: 5 miles
Seasons: Summer through Fall
USGS Quads: Harris Park
Other Maps: Arapaho National Forest, Trails Illustrated #104
Usage Level: Low


Access is gained via the Lost Creek/East Captain Mountain Trailhead. The road in to the trailhead is in the Mount Evans State Wildlife Area and is closed to motor vehicles on Labor Day, then closed to all entry from January 1 through June 14.

Trail Heads

Lost Creek/East Captain Mountain

Connecting Trails

Captain Mountain
Indian Creek
Cub Creek


Beginning in the Mount Evans State Wildlife Area, the Lost Creek Trail descends through open forest about a half mile to a bridge over Bear Creek. If you watch closely to the west of the trail on the way down, you may spot the foundations of the old Bear Creek Ranger Station. Beyond the bridge, the trail skirts a rocky ridge and passes through open meadows about a mile to a junction where the Indian Creek Trail takes off to the east. The Lost Creek Trail continues up the Lost Creek drainage through relatively dense forest, opening up into a meadow at its junction with the Cub Creek Trail.

Trail's History

The trail is part of the original trail system in the Upper Bear Creek Basin, probably built sometime around 1915, although parts of it date back to around 1908.

The Bear Creek Ranger Station was built around 1908 and was in use until the early 1970’s. It was built on a parcel of land leased for the purpose from the General Land Office (later the BLM). The facility consisted of a 20 x 15 dwelling/office with a concrete slab and hitching rail out front, a spring house, and a barn and corral a little farther down the drainage. Just east of the station is an “Observation Rock”, where the ranger could view much of the upper basin. The first telephone line into the upper Bear Creek valley was constructed sometime prior to 1920 to connect the ranger station with the district office in Idaho Springs. The line also served the Evans and Dodge ranches. Sometime in the 1970’s the ranger station was demolished. The leased land reverted to the BLM and in 1993 was transferred to the State Wildlife Area. In 2015, the outhouse was the only structure still standing on the site.