Lifestyle Trails (A.K.A. “Trails for Pusses”) — list them here!!!!!

Dkretden

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Ok, so the “Badge of Honor” trails are not my thing. I like to drive “trails” that take me to places that I would not go in a sedan and I want those trails to have something interesting at the end. Maybe it’s a great alpine fishing lake. Maybe it’s a fantastic hiking trailhead. Maybe it’s a great birding spot. The trail, for me, gets me TO my destination to do something— It’s not THE destination in and of itself.

The Badge of Honor trails, by definition, are challenging and the program is designed for those folks who want to challenge themselves, their driving skills, and their vehicle on an off-road adventure. It’s a GREAT program for folks so inclined. But I want my challenges to be on foot and I only want my Jeep to be able to take me to the starting line.

Consider this:

These old legs still love to hike. But these old legs are not up for the challenge of a 5-mile walk up a mountain TO a trailhead followed by a 10-mile out-and-back hiking trail followed by 5 miles back down to the vehicle. Don’t want to do 20-plus miles..... that’s where the Jeep comes in for me..... it will take me, without a care or trouble, the five miles up the mountain to the trailhead and let me do the 10-mile round trip hiking trail to that amazing glacier-fed waterfall that I would never get to see otherwise.

For others, it might be that overlanding trip through the desert with your 8-year old daughter and 9-year old son to an amazing geologic formation or earthquake fault. They have read all about how that feature was formed, they have studied it, and now, in your Jeep you get a chance to get them there and see it in person. Family Win!

For yet others, it might be the ability to get to that amazing high alpine fishing lake. You really have zero chance to fish that lake if you had to try to hike up from the paved road. But your Jeep got you there.

For still more, it might be about driving across miles of dirt path through the grasslands (or beach,etc) to that point where that particular migratory bird makes its summer home. Pull out your binoculars or spotting scope and add it to your life list.

You get the idea.

I propose that we start this crowdsourced thread — “Lifestyle Trails/Trails for Pusses” — the rule is that you must take your Jeep and you must travel on some kind of dirt/sand/gravel to get there — no special skills or mods needed - just a Jeep and a place to go to in order to do something you love. If you take your jeep and happen to be driving behind 3 Subaru’s, that‘s ok. Remember, this is Trails for Pusses. This isn’t about climbing high rock ledges or navigating death defying mud holes. Just great easy trails that get you to somewhere that you normally would not have been able to get to in your Honda 2WD sedan. Share your experience so others of similar minds might be able to get there too.

Make sense?

Each post should:
1) List the State. AT THE TOP SO FOLKS SEARCHING THE THREAD CAN EASILY SEE IT
2) List the Lifestyle Trail/Trail For Pusses, where it is, and what the attraction is at the end or along the way.
3) A picture or two paints a thousand words.
4) remember: must include driving OFF of the pavement to get there.


I’ll start..... see post below, for a good format that will help folks searching the thread in the future.....

EDIT:

Thanks to @mvandergrift there is a handy google spreadsheet —- see post #117 on page 8 of this thread — of all the crowdsourced lifestyle trails......






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Dkretden

Dkretden

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Colorado.

Loch Lomond Colorado (up from St. Mary’s). About a 2 mile rutted and rocky trail to a stunning alpine lake and glacier fed waterfall. Cold, windy. Seasonal access only. Dispersed camping, fishing or hiking near/around the lake or hike further to additional (and higher) lakes. Any Jeep can drive this Lifestyle Trail without issue. No special skills needed. Not suitable for sedans.

Loch Lomond
20200806_DSF3195.jpeg


Loch Lomond waterfall
20200806_DSF3201.jpeg


Driving up
IMG_3711.jpeg


Driving up
IMG_3712.jpeg
 
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Dkretden

Dkretden

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Colorado.

Indian Peaks Wilderness- Arapaho Pass via Fourth of July trailhead, outside of Nederland, CO (Eldora). Approximately a 5 mile drive up a slightly rutted, mild washboard, maintained dirt road to the Fourth of July trailhead. Any Jeep can make this trip blindfolded and likely so can many passenger SUV-thingamajigs, IMO.

The Fourth of July hiking trail is about a 6 mile round trip to Arapaho pass and the continental divide. We didn’t quite make it to the divide on this trip. But, we did see a Moose in a lovely alpine meadow on the hike and an amazing number of birds. There is also some cool remnants of a small mining operation on the hiking trail at about 11k feet. If you like to hike, it’s absolutely worth taking this Trail for Pusses to get to the Fourth of July hiking trail. Just smile and wave at the Subaru’s and BMW SUVs on the trail too.

edit: do keep in mind that you will drive up to the hiking trailhead and park your Jeep well below the treeline and then take the hiking trail up through the treeline. It is quite glorious to see the trees fall away with each step and then be surrounded by little else than rock and some tundra. Totally terrific hike. The images below show the “jeep” trail with trees and the upper side of the hiking trail (above the treeline).

Driving up to the hiking trailhead
IMG_063598.jpg


Towards the top of the hiking pass
IMG_3740.jpeg


Hiking vista
IMG_3742.jpeg

old Mining operation on the hiking trail
IMG_3737.jpeg


the view on the drive up to the hiking trailhead
IMG_063799.jpg
 
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Doug Huse

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David, you're hitting my nail on the head with this thread. I've already done most of the popular trails in the Western U.S. States in my previous YJ. Now I just want to see what is at the end of that road. Hopefully this becomes a high interest thread with lots of information.
Thanks,
Doug
 
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Dkretden

Dkretden

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David, you're hitting my nail on the head with this thread. I've already done most of the popular trails in the Western U.S. States in my previous YJ. Now I just want to see what is at the end of that road. Hopefully this becomes a high interest thread with lots of information.
Thanks,
Doug
Thanks, Doug.

i think that a lot of jeepers just want to get “to the end of the Forest Road.”

care to put forward a place Lifestyle Trail that you like?
 

RDiddy

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Just wanted to say, I love this thread - this is exactly the kind of stuff I hope to discover too... especially the fishing part.

I am not in the US but if there are any fellow Canadians out there please consider weighing in.

Thanks OP for the awesome conversation.
 

Doug Huse

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David,
Due to the virus, haven't yet had the opportunity to take mine out exploring. Our direction will be ghost towns and mining sites in Arizona and California. In initial pre-planning for a trip in October.
 

sourdough

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Excellent thread ! I'll contribute one of my many favorite easy trails, Highland Lakes. Being in California, it is not a secret place and there are plenty of videos ...
https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=highland+lakes+ca+
I love the whole area and there are several moderate OHV trails in the area off hwy. 4, Deer Valley, Slickrock trail and easy Corral Hollow and Sourgrass 5N02R. Hwy. 4 and 108 are fantastic seasonal mountain pass roads over the Sierras too.
 
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rogueknb

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I also love this thread....fantastic thought and kudos for getting it rolling...I am in Northern Nevada and would love some of these exact spec trails!!!
 

chewieHVT

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Dkretden

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Good posts so far folks. Hoping to get a lot more.

please try to limit the trail selections to those places where you must travel off pavement to get there.
 
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Dkretden

Dkretden

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Colorado, near Silverton

Eureka Gulch trail : this is an easy probably about 5 mile trail up above the treeline (about 12,600 feet) to an old mine around “Lake Emma”.

Pictured below is the lake. Don’t see any water, do you? Well, it’s not the drought. Rather, there was a mining accident in 1979 that punched a hole in this alpine lake and the water drained into the mine shafts/tunnels below flooding them. The lake is now gone and the tunnels remain flooded. No one was killed as the accidental siphon occur on a Sunday when the mine was closed.

Lifestyle: this is a terrific place to bring a 10-year old if you want an up-close and personal discussion with your kids or grandkids about Environmental issues. Is also a great spot for a hike. But sadly, no fishing any more.

A0C560C4-8D58-49C7-B835-D8E85603673F.jpeg
 

AndyIN

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Thanks for this - heading to Estes Park in couple of weeks with a rental Wrangler and have been looking for some places to check out.
 
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Thanks for this - heading to Estes Park in couple of weeks with a rental Wrangler and have been looking for some places to check out.
while it doesn’t qualify for this tread because the route is 100% on pavement, do consider guenella pass outsid of Georgetown. The pass is all paved and caps out about about 11,000feet, I think. From the top of the pass there is Fantastic hiking To some alpine lakes on the Square Top mountain trail if that’s your thing and the aspens are likely going to be starting to change color soon too, I’m told.
 

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