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Big Creek Lakes in Colorado

by  guest-paddler

A self-supported trip created by guest-paddler

Trip Overview

The Big Creek Lakes are located 5 miles south of the Wyoming border, north of Walden. What makes them unique in Colorado is that there are 2 lakes that are both accessible by canoe, but only the first one is accessible by vehicle.

Motors are allowed on the lower lake, but not on the upper lake. The creek between the lakes is not completely navigable by canoe. A rapid just above the inlet blocks paddling, but above that can be paddled with one or two log jams to pull over.

The second lake is a beautiful place to paddle.

Primitive campsites are available at the inlet to the lower lake, as well as numerous places on the upper lake. A hiking trail skirts the north side, so solitude seekers may want to camp on the south side of the lake.

Much of the forest has been beetle killed, so be cautious when camping.

Also, the wilderness boundary and Big Creek Falls are a short hike above the second lake.


There is a public campground at the lower lake, including pit toilets.


The day use fee is $5

Camping in the campground is an additional fee


From Walden, go 9 miles north on CO 125, 18 miles west on County Road 6W, and 6 miles west on Forest Road 600.


Parks Ranger District

Routt National Forest

PO Box 158/ 100 Main Street

Walden, CO 80480

Phone: 970-723-8204

Trip Details

  • Sport/Activity: Canoeing
  • Skill Level: Beginner
  • Water Type: Flat/Sheltered Water

Trip Location