Young Gulch Trail (#999) – Poudre Canyon, Colorado

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Article Categories: Hiking
Article Tags: Colorado | Day Hikes

Young Gulch is an awesome out and back hike that features a trail with 20+ river crossings, meadow views, cliff views, forest views, and more. This trail takes hikers through diverse terrain with a gradual gain that is perfect for trail runners.

Distance – 10.2 miles round trip (16.42 km)
Height – 7,010 feet (2,136.65 meters)
Elevation gain – 1,427 feet (434.95 meters)
Duration – 4 to 6 hours
Difficulty – Intermediate
Seasons – Year-round (caution needed in winter – see below)
Trailhead Location – Young Gulch Trailhead – 5,840 feet (directions below)

Trail Map

Young GulchTrail Map

Young GulchTrail Map

 

Young Gulch Trail Elevation Profile

Young Gulch Trail Elevation Profile

Here is a Google Map with a GPX file.

Trail Options

Young Gulch Trail (#999) Out And Back: 10.2 Miles Round Trip | 1,427 Feet Elevation Gain

Young Gulch Trail (#999) is the only route at this trailhead. This trail is very well traveled, features 20 or so river crossings (some with bridges, some with rock hopping, some with log crossings), and fantastic views.

This trail features fantastic views from the very beginning. The gulches that this trail meanders through follows a creek. Hikers will find themselves with views of the surrounding mountains, small waterfalls, burnt forest, green meadows, and forest views.

The end of this trail is very clearly marked with a log and sign, both saying, this is the end of the trail. The trail ends in trees, and without views. Hikers simply retrace their steps back to the trailhead.

Due to the gradual gain across the 5 miles, this is a fantastic trail running option.

Hiking Young Gulch in Winter

This is a great winter hiking area. Extra caution needs to be taken during wet and icy times. We highly recommend bringing traction devices such as microspikes to remain safe on the trails and to avoid falls.

Camping And Other Information

There are no official campsites near the trail, however all along Poudre Canyon there are many campgrounds to choose from that are very close, including the Ansel Watrous Campground located only a few hundred feet from the trailhead. You can read more about amenities and camping nearby here: https://www.fs.usda.gov/recarea/arp/recarea/?recid=36779

Dogs are allowed here on leashes.

You can find information on the official government site here: https://www.fs.usda.gov/recarea/arp/recarea/?recid=36863

Current weather conditions:

Here is the detailed weather forecast for the next few days.

Laporte, CO

This Afternoon
A chance of showers and thunderstorms. Partly sunny. High near 75, with temperatures falling to around 71 in the afternoon. Southeast wind around 14 mph, with gusts as high as 22 mph. Chance of precipitation is 30%. New rainfall amounts less than a tenth of an inch possible.

Tonight
A chance of showers and thunderstorms before midnight. Partly cloudy. Low around 55, with temperatures rising to around 57 overnight. West southwest wind 7 to 14 mph, with gusts as high as 22 mph. Chance of precipitation is 30%. New rainfall amounts less than a tenth of an inch possible.

Saturday
A chance of showers and thunderstorms after noon. Sunny. High near 81, with temperatures falling to around 76 in the afternoon. East southeast wind 7 to 13 mph, with gusts as high as 21 mph. Chance of precipitation is 50%.

Saturday Night
A slight chance of showers and thunderstorms before midnight. Partly cloudy, with a low around 57. South southwest wind 6 to 13 mph, with gusts as high as 21 mph. Chance of precipitation is 20%.

Sunday
A chance of showers and thunderstorms after noon. Mostly sunny, with a high near 81. South wind 6 to 13 mph, with gusts as high as 20 mph. Chance of precipitation is 50%.

Sunday Night
A slight chance of showers and thunderstorms before midnight. Partly cloudy, with a low around 58.

Independence Day
A chance of showers and thunderstorms after noon. Mostly sunny, with a high near 85. Chance of precipitation is 30%.

Directions & Parking

The parking area has 20+ car spots, and there are some street overflow parking spots along highway 14.

Directions to Young Gulch Trailhead:

Additional Pictures

Young Gulch Trail Views Early On

Young Gulch Trail Views Early On

Views From The Young Gulch Trail

Views From The Young Gulch Trail

Views During A Water Crossing

Views During A Water Crossing

Young Gulch Trail Views

Young Gulch Trail Views

Prairie Views On Young Gulch Trail

Prairie Views On Young Gulch Trail

A large log river crossing

A large log river crossing

A River Crossing On The Young Gulch Trail

A River Crossing On The Young Gulch Trail

Another River Crossing

Another River Crossing

Gulch Trail View

Gulch Trail View

More Young Gulch Trail Views

More Young Gulch Trail Views

Max DesMarais
Max DesMarais

Max DesMarais is the founder of Hiking & Fishing. He has a passion for the outdoors and making outdoor education and adventure more accessible. Max is a published author for various outdoor and marketing websites. He is an experienced hiker, backpacker, fly fisherman, trail runner, and spends his free time in the outdoors. These adventures allow him to test gear, learn new skills, and experience new places so that he can educate others. You can read more about him here: hikingandfishing/about

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