Longwater Gulch

Divide, Colorado (Teller County)

Last Updated: 12/01/2019
4.6 / 5 ( 5 reviews )
Information
Nearby Trails
Status: Open
Typically Open: Year Round
Length: 3.8 miles
Highest Elevation: 9032 feet
Duration: About 1 hour, 30 minutes
Shape of Trail: Out & Back
Best Direction to Travel: N/A
Nearest Town: Divide
Nearest Town w/ Services: Divide
Official Road Name: 221
Management Agency: Pike National Forest
District: South Park Ranger District
Showing 0 trails within 2 miles

Highlights

Highlight: Longwater Gulch
Longwater Gulch is a 4wd trail that takes you along high mountain ridges and provides excellent views along the way. The majority of the trail was devastated by the Hayman Fire in 2002 leaving very few trees untouched. But without the trees, you can see many different views and a lot of rock outcroppings that were once hidden. There are a lot of steep hill climbs and descents and a locker may help. The toughest obstacle is a large, off camber rock slab.

Weather

7 day forecast for Longwater Gulch

Route Information

Technical Rating:
(DIFFICULT )

Read more about our rating system

Waypoints

1. Trail Head (0 mi)
The small yellow sign you'll see designating the trail. You can also see in this picture a bit farther back is the gate that will be closed seasonally. (#2 and #3) View of the trail ahead and surrounding landscape as you enter the burned area just after the trail head.

Directions to Trailhead

Trailhead Coordinates: 39.098099, -105.275046

Starting Point: Colorado Springs, Colorado

From Colorado Springs, on I-25 take exit 141 to Highway 24 and head West. Continue about 25 miles passing through Woodland Park until you reach Divide. Make a right onto County Road 5. A short ways down this road make a slight left onto County Road 51 (Cedar Mountain Road). About 3 miles down, the road will appear to fork, be sure to keep right onto County Road 51. Travel down this road, that will eventually turn to dirt, for 6.7 miles. The road will fork again with an additional (sharp turn) road on the left. Continue on the middle road (Still County Road 51). You are now entering the OHV area. Please be aware of ATVs and Dirt Bikes traveling and be mindful to those camping along side the road. 7 miles down you will see the trail head on the left. There is a small sign, yellow that says Longwater Gulch. It's not visible from the main road so try not to accidentally pass it. You will see it once you turn onto the road.

Camping

Dispersed

Land Use Issues

Please also refer to waypoint 5. Please stay on the trail and do not drive past the county line closure and do not drive into or past the river. Efforts are being made to get this portion of the trail officially reopened and people not violating the closure is a huge step towards making that happen. More information can be found through: Predator 4WD: http://www.predator4wd.com/trailnews.html and South Platte Ranger District: 303-275-5610

Trail Reviews (21)

Author:
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Awesome trail. I had to turn around at the main big rock about 3/4's of the way down to the river. Small bald tires and no winch.

Author:
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Rating:
Traversed the trail Sunday in a lifted 35" JKUR with no surprises. Some of the ascents/descents are a little slippery from the loose gravel, however if you're 4LO and/or watching your speed, you should not have any issues. The one large rock coming out of the turn going down towards the river can be a little tricky if you do not take your time finding the right line. Coming back up, this was the only time on the trail where I used my lockers. Nice trail, perfect for scenic views and a nice picnic by the water or on one of the pull-offs where you can reach the rocks.

Author:
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Rating:
Cut and removed a downed tree from recent high winds. For those unsure about the county line, my recommendation is to start searching for a turnaround spot after the power line towers (can’t miss them). Fun trail. Some caution on the rock slab is necessary but it’s otherwise a typical trail with small features here and there. No scrapes, running it on a Gladiator, 37s, 3-4” lift.

Author:
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Rating:
Great trail for expansive views but as for obstacles, I prefer Hackett Gulch. Metberry is more fun as well

Author:
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Rating:
Ran it May 1st and May 9th. May 1st, it was extremely busy, lots of Toyotas on it which was cool to see. May 9th, hardly anyone, was kinda surprising as they were both weekends. I essentially did a video review, but it’s fun, somewhat challenging (but you still need a capable vehicle), and extremely scenic! I’ll add, 0 your odometer if you don’t want to miss the county line. No signage at all. Also, I’d recommend this over Metberry if you’re newer to off roading. Metberry is rutted out and requires more driver skill as of right now (which may change with repairs).

Author: Official Crew
Status: Not Reported
Offroaded on:
NOTE: There have been reports of various people receiving tickets for traveling beyond the county line into the closed area and crossing the river. Authorities are actively patrolling the area. Please do your part to help us in getting the entire trail reopened by adhering to the partial closure and do not travel past the county line or cross the river.

Author:
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
We hit Longwater Gulch after staying the night at the end of Metberry Gulch. It was a great trail! Lots of loose rutted, rocky, dusty and steep accents and descents. No real issues but I did hit my rock slider and rear bumper HARD on a blind, washed out bolder. Just could not see that is was soooo deep. No damage, so all is well. Pretty happy I had a rear locker on parts of this one. It was pretty loose footing and my tires are in need of being replaced. Put a small slash in one side wall too, but like a say they are old, worn and dry. On the Rock Slab section someone has added a trail off to the left (if descending). It is not noted in the above description and is obviously not supposed to be there, as it crosses over two downed cables designed to keep people on trail. I have never done this trail and took that rout completely by accident. Took about 45-50 min in and 45 out, so the description was spot on for us.

Author:
Status: Impassable
Offroaded on:
Got ~1mile into the trail and the snow drifts were to large. Blowing wind covered the trail, not only was the drives large but the snow hard and made highcentering easy. We followed some other tracks and ended up turning around at the same location they did.

Author: Official Crew
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Rating:
We ran the gulches and had a good day. Minimal ice and snow just saw LOTS of off trail usage.

Author:
Status: Partially Open
Offroaded on:
For anyone taking the drive out to Longwater, after seeing the post below where the guy got a ticket I did some digging. Apparently, the trail is closed after mile 3.8 where it falls into the next county. This means you can't go to the river or you can be ticketed. You have to turn around at the county line. Hacket and Metberry are both completely open, use Metberry if you want some river time. I've also been assured that Longwater and Metberry are fine for stock JKs, but Hackett needs lockers. That's good info to have for noobs like me.

Author:
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Beautiful day and the trail was in good condition. No issues to report.

Author:
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
The trail was quiet everything has dried out.

Author:
Status: Not Reported
Offroaded on:
I got a ticket from the DOW for having a motor vehicle on this trail. I stopped at the river and set up to go fishing when he put me through the ringer and wrote me up. I told him that everything I read said it was legal as long as I stopped at the river. He said I couldn't get within a half-mile of the water with ANY motorized vehicle.

Author: Official Crew
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
We did Hackett and Longwater for an easy day on the trail. Longwater was nice all the way out and back with nothing to really note in the trail, change wise. Please remember, this trail is still closed at the county line, waypoint 5. A number of vehicles have violated that this year and paid dearly losing entire vehicles. Note, if you flood your vehicle here, it's not an authorized road and therefore insurance will not cover it. Someone lost 46K for trying to go through the river at the bottom this year.

Author:
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
The trail was dusty, but had no issues going down and back up. Used a locker coming back up on Longwater Rock, but felt like it was doable without a locker with a little better approach and departure angles. The River was a lot deeper than 12" this time. It was closer to 2ft at the crossing, and that is next to the large hole that needs to be driven around. I was unable to see any signs or even markings that looked like a gate, and had followed a UTV down to the river. On the way up, another UTV group was headed down to the river also.

Author:
Status: Open
Offroaded on:

Author: Official Crew
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Besides Longwater Rock, this trail is fairly mellow with a number of steep climbs and descents. Longwater Rock is certainly a puckery obstacle. Line yourself up for a good straight approach and you should be fine, but don't be surprised if your back end slide a little towards the fall line against the hill where there is an old tree trunk sticking out. The cable where the trail is closed at the county line no longer exists.

Author: Official Crew
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Nice day on all three gulches, we ran this one second. There wasn't another soul on the trail and there's almost no snow or ice on the trail right now.

Author:
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
It was a very windy and cold day up on Longwater. Some areas had a small amount of snow/ice, more in the trail in and out however. The majority of the trail itself was dry. The water crossings looked to be in the middle of their range with only some ice chunks.

Author: Official Crew
Status: Partially Open
Offroaded on:
Gate at entrance is still open. Reports of snow 12"-18" deep in most spots. There is also reports of a tree down across the trail, unsure of exact location, but appears to be just after one of the first big hill climbs.

Author: Official Crew
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
The weather was so nice out that we decided to take a quick trip up to Longwater Gulch for the day. You couldn't have asked for better weather in late September. The trail is in pretty good condition and not too many areas were washed out from all the rain we've been having. Tree growth in the burn areas seems to be coming along nicely. The views were spectacular as all the aspen trees were changing for the season and were mainly a beautiful golden color. The only traffic on the trail were two other Jeeps that had pulled over. The drivers were sitting out in their folding chairs soaking up the sun and admiring the views just as anyone else would do on such a lovely day. There were still some areas where burned trees fell near the road where you have to mind where your tires are. The rock slab is still the toughest part of this trail. It causes your vehicle to come down at such an awkward angle and the gravel all over it and a large stump right in your path doesn't make it any easier. But with a little navigation and some puckering from sliding sideways, we made it down successfully! A quick drive down some more steep gravel hills and we arrived at the river. It's such a beautiful setting. The water was crystal clear. I took the opportunity to fly my quadcopter around to get some amazing shots of the river. It was a very fun and relaxing day.

Questions & Answers (2)

Q: Looks like Hackett is open to the river, is longwater still closed past the county line?
–dwight (08/08/2018)
–Lauren Martin (08/09/2018)
Q: At one time, it appeared you could drive across the river. Is that not the case now?
–Todd (07/05/2017)
–Lauren Martin (07/06/2017)

Writer Information

Lauren Martin

Mapping Crew - Colorado

Lauren Martin started offroading as a small child with her father in a 1996 Toyota Tacoma in the beautiful state of Colorado of which she now calls home. Like many, once they first made the trek to Moab, Utah, they were addicted. Still a lover of all things Toyota, especially Tacoma's, Lauren now has a Tacoma of her own that she enjoys on the trails of Colorado and makes the journey to Moab yearly. Rig: 1998 Toyota Tacoma 3.4L V6 TRD 33" BFG KM2s Siped, 16" TRD Ivan Stewart Wheels, ADS Racing Shocks 2.5" Extended Travel Coilovers with Reservoirs, Total Chaos Uniball Upper Control Arms, All-Pro 3" Rear Suspension Kit, Rear E-Locker, Tundra Brake Upgrade, Trail Gear Front Stinger Bumper and Sliders, CBI Offroad Rear Tube Bumper, Smittybilt XRC8 Winch, Skid Row Offroad Front and Transmission Skid Plates, Low Range Offroad E-Locker Guard, Rock Lights, Rigid DOT/SAE Fog Lights, CB/PA, Custom Satoshi Grille with 12" LED Light Bar
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