Argentine Pass

Georgetown, Colorado (ClearCreek County)

Last Updated: 07/01/2022
4.8 / 5 ( 56 reviews )
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Highlights

Highlight: Argentine Pass
Argentine Pass is a trail with heights and history and just enough challenge to make it interesting along the way. The moderate trail travels up the switchbacks left by the Argentine Central Railroad that ran here from 1905 to 1917. New and experienced drivers come from all over Colorado to make the 9-mile trek to the summit at 13,205’. The whole road is open year-round but largely impassable during the snowy season and the summit isn’t accessible until well into the summer. You can make a whole day of just traveling up to the Argentine summit and back, but make the trip more fun by adding the McLellan Mountain summits and leaving out that route. Any route up and down these mountains is a Colorado classic that shouldn’t be missed.

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Route Information

Technical Rating

( MODERATE )

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Waypoints

1. Leavenworth Creek Road (0 mi)
The entrance to this road is in the middle of a switchback on the way up from Georgetown. The dirt road is obvious next to a lookout point. There is not much room to air down here. At the bottom of the switchback there is a large parking area on both sides of the road. This is the best place to stop, especially with a larger group.

Directions to Trailhead

Starting Point: Georgetown

From the I-70 exit, follow the signs to Guanella Pass that pepper the town as soon as you pass the visitor center. The signs have a blue background and the Columbine flower with "Guanella Pass Scenic Byway" underneath.

The pavement switchbacks a few times before reaching the trailhead. You will come across a large parking area on either side of the road right before a switchback. At the top of that switchback is a lookout over the valley below.

Note: It's possible to air down here, but it's recommended that you do so at the parking area just below the trailhead.

Camping

Dispersed

Trail Reviews (100)

Questions & Answers (14)

Q: Anyone know if it's feasible to get to the mine yet? I'm sure both McClellan and Argentine are still a month out from being accessible, just looking for some easy four-wheeling on the way back to Denver this weekend. I'd imagine most OHV areas in Clear Creek are still inaccessible for a few more weeks. Cheers!
–Dan Lee (05/28/2021)
–JD Marshall (05/28/2021)
Q: Visiting Georgetown, CO. in August. Is it possible to do Argentine Pass and Bill Moore Lake in one day? I was hoping to start at 9am with the Argentine Pass trip, return to Georgetown around 2pm. Then, start the trip to Bill Moore Lake at around 2:30pm at the latest. Then, we want to be back around 7pm before night fall. I know that's hectic but just want to know if that could work if we choose to go for it? Also, do you have a second shorter option out of Georgetown if Bill Moore is to too much to fill the rest of the afternoon?? Thanks, Steve
–steve michael stefany (06/03/2020)
–Ryan Boudreau (06/04/2020)
–JD Marshall (06/04/2020)
Q: The duration of this trail is listed above as 3 hours. I'm assuming that is one way and total time (in/out) would be 6 hours??
–steve michael stefany (03/21/2020)
–JD Marshall (03/21/2020)
Q: Anyone been up recently? All Clear?
–Colin (07/01/2018)
–Glenn Walbek (07/04/2018)
–JD Marshall (07/02/2018)
Q: Hey I was looking to do it this weekend! how is the trail looking?
–John (05/16/2018)
–grant (06/18/2018)
–JD Marshall (06/01/2018)
–John (06/01/2018)
–Harv Alva (05/27/2018)
–JD Marshall (05/21/2018)
–Stephen Bartels (05/21/2018)
–JD Marshall (05/16/2018)
–JD Marshall (05/16/2018)
Q: If someone wanted to take a UTV here. Where can I park a trailer?
–Radek Gebala (05/11/2018)
–JD Marshall (05/11/2018)
Q: Does anyone know if there is still snow on the trail? 5/5/18
–Rodney (05/05/2018)
–JD Marshall (05/06/2018)
Q: I have a stock 05' Dakota with 31.5" tires, a buddy with a stock 07' Liberty.. could we make it through the rock obstacle with out trail damage?
–Austen Bruhn (03/17/2018)
–JD Marshall (03/18/2018)
Q: Could a Stock crosstrek make the climb during spring/summer?
–Riley (02/23/2018)
–JD Marshall (02/23/2018)
Q: I'd like to go up on 9/22. Any news on the restoration going on (closed trails etc)? I'll be going as far as my stock trailblazer can get me, will the rock obstacle near the top be doable in my vehicle? Thanks!
–Chris Vendegna (09/17/2017)
–JD Marshall (09/21/2017)
–JD Marshall (09/17/2017)
Q: When looking at google earth, it looks like the trail can go through the pass and down the other side of the mountain. Is that another trail or is it simply not acceptable?
–Francesco Compagnino (08/29/2017)
–JD Marshall (08/29/2017)
Q: How tight does Argentine Pass get? I'm passing through on a vacation from Iowa and want to do this trail. I'm fairly experienced when it comes to wheeling, I'm just worried about scratching up my Daily Driver.
–Evan Siebert (07/19/2017)
–JD Marshall (07/21/2017)
–Todd (07/19/2017)
Q: Do you think a full size, stock pickup could do this up to Waldorf Mine?
–Ryan Boudreau (06/26/2017)
–JD Marshall (06/26/2017)
Q: Is the water crossing deep this time of year off of the powerline road?
–Todd (06/19/2017)
–JD Marshall (06/19/2017)

Writer Information

JD Marshall

Mapping Crew - Colorado

Jen & JD moved to Colorado from Chicago in May of 2015 for work and brought with them a 2001 stock Jeep Wrangler that had been garage bound for two years. Within a month of arrival, all rusty 170,000 miles of it was shaking on Colorado trails and they've never stopped. As time as gone on, their 2001 TJ had to be traded and a 2015 Jeep JK has been added to the family. JD works as a Systems Engineer for a cable company and Jen runs a business from their home during the week to pay the bills. When the weekend hits, they're almost always hitting the trail. When Sunday night rolls around, the question turns to, 'so what's next week?!'.
For individual use only, not to be shared.