Hike through alpine basins, fields of wildflowers, aspen trees, and above treeline backcountry. For those who have acclimated to the altitude and are looking for a full day adventure, the Sneffels Highline Trail will soon become a favorite.
Our preferred starting point for this 13-mile loop is from Aspen Street at the Judd Weibe Trailhead. Looping counterclockwise takes you through fir forests until the trail opens to Pack Basin, a green meadow dotted with large rocks and wildflowers. Reaching the summit separating Pack and Mill Basins, after 4 miles is a great place to drink more water and eat a snack. Revel in the extensive views of the Southwest spanning the ski area, Wilson Peak, El Diente and Lizard Head. To the North glimpse views of the jagged Gilpin Peak and Dallas Peak with Mill Creek Basin below. Descending the summit takes you across rocky switchbacks down to a spectacular wildflower meadow with thigh-high delphinium, columbine, daisies and more. End the hike with a walk through an Aspen forest. Completing this hike deserves a reward so pick your pleasure. Grab a beer and burger at the Cornerhouse, chips and guacamole on the La Cocina patio, or an ice cream cone at Telluride Truffle. All fantastic options!
Distance: 13-mile loop
Difficulty: Most Difficult
Elevation Gain: 3520 feet
Time: Full Day
Begin at the top of North Aspen Street in downtown Telluride, Colorado. Follow the Jud Wiebe Trail westward for 1/2 mile until you reach the sign marking the Deep Creek Trail. Veer right at the sign marking the Mill Creek Trail and continue up through the Butcher Creek drainage. Continue through alpine meadows and the Mill Creek mining ruins. To complete the loop, follow the Waterline Trail to get you back to where you started.