Hiking Acorn Creek in Silverthorne, Colorado

Honey Hiking at Acorn Creek – just a few miles north of Silverthorne, Colorado. Photo Credit to my friend Katie J. who got this amazing shot while we stopped for coffee on the way down.

Last weekend my friends and I hiked Acorn Creek, 8 miles north of Silverthorne, Colorado. The trail starts on Forest Service land (off of Columbine Landing Road) and takes a pretty direct line straight up to the “ridge” of Ptarmigan (a more popular known hike in Summit County, CO). Acorn Creek Trail is lesser known.

Acorn Creek trail is about 2,500 vertical feet gained over approximately 3 miles – so it is steep, especially as you near the ridge. This is a view from the trail head.

We hiked on May 30th and started at the trail head totally bundled up, with some light snow flakes falling and at least 3 inches of snow on the sage brush. It was so beautiful seeing the bits of spring shining through – but I recognize that could make some people uncomfortable (it did dry fast).

It took us about 2.5 hours to get to the ridge – line ; we joked that the trail should be named “layers on and off” because of the drastic amount of temperature swings from time of day, elevation gained, and changing amount of UV. We brought all the layers…. literally.

The ridge at Acorn Creek Trail is worth the steep end of the climb; amazing views and great accomplishment. Note: we did not play around too much on the ridge line to the North of us was a significant cornice that was still holding a lot snow with potential to cause avalanche.

We took our time down climbing to make coffee, snack, and hang out with Honey. I also I am experimenting more with photography so I was having fun taking “artsy” photos of our coffee making.

This was a fantastic spring hike – I would highly recommend! Acorn Creek Trail head is Forest Service land and eventually goes into a “wilderness” area – so keep that in mind when planning and preparing for your hike (for us that means leashing Honey). We completed the 6 miles loop in total in about 5 hours (we were poking around, being social, and hanging out). While I do find the steep section difficult it is nothing that cannot be done with just a hiking pole and some determination. I bet in a few weeks the wild flowers would be amazing…

We ended our evening with some friends at my home in Keystone and made some awesome home-made margaritas.

Acorn Creek Trail was an awesome and social day in my book. This week Katie and I will continue to bike commute. I tell you what … that was my first major hike of the year and my IT bands/hip muscles were feeling it! I will occasionally keep up on the Colorado Travel posts but I am excited to start documenting and journaling my transition to bike commuting. Please connect with me if you are a commuter!

Happy hiking, biking, traveling – Emily.


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