Added by Derrick Lytle

Part of the Hardrock 100 course. Sheer cliffs. Especially Scenic Trail. Free.

Bear Creek Trail, which leads to Grizzly Mine, is located just 2 miles outside of Ouray, Colorado on Highway 550 immediately following the first tunnel. There's two parking lots, a large one and a small one, the trail leads from the small parking lot over the tunnel and highway. There are no bathrooms or water at the trailhead.

This trail has very low traffic. I saw one person while out on it which means easy parking and room to park big trucks and RVs.

Grizzly Bear Mine is 2.4 miles from the trail head on a trail full of exposure, steep switchbacks, rocks, and more rocks. The trail head sits at around 9500 feet and the first 15 switchbacks climb 1000 feet over scree.

Once above the switchbacks the trail levels out to a degree and you will run a couple miles on rocky rooty single track that follows steep cliffs. The run or hike is intense but offers beautiful canyon views of the river and waterfalls below. Depending on the season you may encounter multiple stream crossings of cold water. The water looks clear but I am hesitant to drink it since there has been so much mining in the area in the past.

At mile 2.4 you will reach a wooden sign saying "Grizzly Bear Mine" along with mile distances to Yellow Jacket Mine and Engineer Pass. Be cautious looking at the old mine ruins then return the way you came.

After the run I would recommend making the drive over the hill to Silverton. Silverton is less busy than Ouray and has great options for food and drinks. I like Thee Pitts BBQ in downtown Silverton. It's the pink building that smells delicious. Check to make sure they are open as they are seasonal but they do offer Wifi and outlets to plug in whatever you need to charge.

Caution: This area has very quickly changing weather. My run started hot and ended in a freezing downpour. Bring rain gear. Also, watch for falling rocks. The mountain is very crumbly and you will see and hear rocks falling. Keep your eyes and ears open.

Read More

Tags

Fitness
Camping
Running
Backpacking
Hiking
Dog Friendly
Easy Parking
Food Nearby
Forest
River
Scenic
Waterfall
Wildflowers
Wildlife

Reviews

Have you done this adventure? Be the first to leave a review!

Stay Nearby

Ridgway, Colorado

Ouray Koa

San Miguel County, Colorado

Matterhorn

Overview Matterhorn Campground is located along the San Juan Skyway (Colorado Highway 145), near the quaint town of Telluride, at an elevation of 8,500 feet. Visitors enjoy the area for its beautif...

Rico, Colorado

Cayton Campground

Overview Cayton Campground is located along the San Juan Skyway (Colorado Highway 145) and the Dolores River. Visitors enjoy the area for its great fishing, hiking and scenic driving opportunities....

Gunnison, Colorado

Jackson Guard Station

Overview Jackson Guard Station is a great destination for anything from a weekend getaway to a week-long hunting trip. The cabin was originally used as a guard station that housed Forest Service wo...

Nearby Adventures

  • Explore Corckscrew Gulch

    Corkscrew Gulch is named for the narrow and winding switchbacks that "corkscrewes" up Red Mountain Two. It is hard to miss this area of the San Juan Mountains, because the deep reds, oranges, and yellows blanket all three of the named "Red Mountai...

  • Ski or Snowboard Red Mountain Pass

    Red Mountain Pass is the site of an historic silver mining boom from 1882 to 1893. During that time, over 10,000 people lived at over 11,000 feet! Today, it's turned into a backcountry ski and snowboard touring destination.  If you are coming from...

  • Drive Black Bear Pass & the Ingram Basin

    Black Bear Pass (el. 12,840’), officially known as Forest Service Road 648, is an infamous 4WD road that runs between U.S. Highway 550 (between Silverton & Ouray) and Telluride, CO. From the pass downhill through the Ingram Basin to Telluride,...

    12 miles 3000 ft gain

  • Drive to California Pass

    California Pass’s summit is a jaw dropping 12,960 feet above sea level. A long way from the valley floor, California Gulch, but, as drivers start their trek, the valley floor starts to shrink and gives way to steep climbs and switchbacks. Off road...

  • Inspire Your Fall Aspen Trip!

    Autumn days in Aspen are filled with sunshine and nights with crisp cool air. Watch the mountains and valleys turn gold with the changing Aspen trees. Take in the scenery while enjoying scenic drives, hiking through forests, road biking, and exploring our IMBA Gold Level Ride Center recognized mountain bike trails. 




    Learn More