Deer Creek

Montezuma, Colorado (Summit County)

Last Updated: 07/27/2019
5 /5 ( 12 reviews )
Information
Nearby Trails
Status: Open
Typically Open: 05/20 - 11/23
Length: 3.8 miles
Highest Elevation: 12370 feet
Duration: About 45 minutes
Shape of Trail: Straight Through
Best Direction to Travel: N/A
Nearest Town: Montezuma
Nearest Town w/ Services: Keystone
Official Road Name: 5
Management Agency: White River National Forest
District: Dillon Ranger District
Showing 0 trails within 2 miles

Highlights

Highlight: Deer Creek
Deer Creek 4WD trail is the easiest of the trails heading out of Montezuma. It works its way south up the valley and summits at the Continental Divide, connecting with a few other popular 4WD trails in the high alpine tundra.

Video

Weather

7 day forecast for Deer Creek

Route Information

Technical Rating:
(MODERATE )

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Waypoints

1. Northern Trailhead (0.00 mi)
In a meadow, the road widens into a large parking area.

Directions to Trailhead

Trailhead Coordinates: 39.563990, -105.860549

Starting Point: Keystone

The following describes Deer Creek 4WD trail from north to south. From US 6 at Keystone, take CR 5, Montezuma Road, east for 4.9 miles to the tiny village of Montezuma. Continue straight through town and a further 3.3 miles. At a wide meadow, the trailhead has a parking area on the right. To run this trail from south to north, the southern trailhead is at the junction of Middle Fork Swan River, Saints John Road (FS 275), and Deer Creek Road (FS 5).

Camping

Dispersed

Trail Reviews (18)

Author:
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Rating:
Fantastic Trail. Hooked up with the St. John's Trail for a loop back near the starting point. Not too crowded on a Friday. Be careful on the lower switchbacks as we did run into groups of four plus side by sides and Jeeps and it is hard to pass. Overall a great trail and in great shape right now.

Author: Official Crew
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Rating:
Great day today! We went up Deer Creek and down Saints John and made a few friends along the way. (Photos by my awesome wife.)

Author:
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Completely open and completely dry. Still can’t link to Saints John due to snow, but we had a great time. Even met some horned friends at the top. Stock 4Runner with Wildpeaks. Had no issues.

Author:
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Rating:
Made it all the way to the top with only 1 minor snow patch left that will likely be completely melted in the next couple days. Trail is in good condition and very accessible.

Author:
Status: Partially Open
Offroaded on:
Seasonal gate is open, but snow soon blocks further travel. Area was vey popular with campers and other OHV users. Several hikers on the road so good to be careful as you travel.

Author: Official Crew
Status: Partially Open
Offroaded on:
Rating:
Beautiful sunny day. Alternating snow and mud from the trailhead. After waypoint 4 the snow gets hard packed and slick. Since I was riding solo, I decided to turn back between waypoints 5 and 6, when I started sliding sideways. P.S. The new USFS signage on Montezuma Road is AWESOME!!

Author:
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Rating:
Pretty easy trail, we ran it in a stock 4Runner. There are some narrow points where passing vehicles would be difficult. Not much color in late-September.

Author: Official Crew
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Rating:
Ran this down hill as part of the Saints John loop. Clouds moved in with rain but it was a nice day wheeling.

Author:
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Rating:
100% open, finished this as part of a connector with Sts. John, made for a great loop. Overall the whole trip took us about 4 hours including time to explore a bit and take photos. Stock 4Runner, no issues.

Author:
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Open and no snow. Ready to go.

Author: Official Crew
Status: Partially Open
Offroaded on:
Rating:
Summit County has had a couple of snow storms now. Most trails that go above treeline are blocked with snow. On Saturday, 10/7, a group reported the trail impassible at the switchbacks just above tree line. On 10/9 another, bigger snow storm hit the area.

Author: Official Crew
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Rating:
We took our SxS up North Fork and looped around Saints John, Deer Creek, and Middle Fork. I guess since school has started the crowds are winding down. We only saw a handful of SxS's and and two trucks the whole day. Even with some recent rain, the trails are pretty dry and sometimes dusty. Afternoon storms rolled in and made us nervous about lightning, but we only got a few sprinkles of rain. Over all, a great day!

Author: Official Crew
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Trail was open all the way through. We started at the top and went down into Montezuma after coming up Saints John. The views from this trail are nothing short of amazing and this trail is a great way out, or into a day of the trails in this area.

Author: Official Crew
Status: Partially Open
Offroaded on:
As of Saturday, June 24th, the seasonal gate on the Montezuma side was still closed but is expected to be open in the next few days. However, the trail is passable from the top and can be accessed via North Fork. Working in partnership with the Forst Service, we were able to clear the last remaining snow drifts and install some new signage. Some snow may linger for a few weeks, but not very likely.

Author: Official Crew
Status: Partially Open
Offroaded on:
As of Saturday, June 24th, the seasonal gate on the Montezuma side was still closed but is expected to be open in the next few days. However, the trail is passable from the top and can be accessed via North Fork. Working in partnership with the Forst Service, we were able to clear the last remaining snow drifts and install some new signage.

Author: Official Crew
Status: Partially Open
Offroaded on:
Rating:
Snowmobiles are still taking full advantage of the late snowfall. Another foot was added last week. The snow appears hard packed, but that's deceiving. I hiked up about 100 yards from the northern trailhead and, even on foot, broke through the crust a couple of times. There are 6+ foot drifts in the trail that the snowmobiles have been going around. We've still got several weeks before the trail will be truly open.

Author: Official Crew
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Rating:
The late coming of winter in 2016 means that most of the high passes are still open in mid November. The lower, treed sections of Deer Creek have a few ice patches. Places were spring water crosses the trail have iced over forcing the spring water to run down the trail where it has frozen into an ice rink. These are not very long and are passable with careful tire placement, plenty of momentum, and, if those aren't enough, some traction control device (like lockers). The forest service will be closing gates on November 23rd, so there's only one weekend left anyway.

Author:
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Rating:
We camped along Saints John trail and hit up Deer Trail as well. It was an easy trail with a lot of beautiful scenery. Easy trail for a beginner.

Questions & Answers (0)

Writer Information

Trint Ladd

Mapping Crew - Colorado

Trint grew up riding dirt bikes in the creek beds of the Texas Panhandle. While attending college in Colorado in the late 1990's, he saw a magazine article about a Ford Explorer four-wheeling club. He never saw his Explorer as an adventure vehicle before, but quickly joined up and caught the bug. With his engineering background, Trint has always respected the factory design of a good truck (and recognized when manufacturers put cheap parts into something marketed for off road use). "A good driver, with a well built, stock truck can do trails that would break a $50k, built-up rig with an inexperienced driver." He put that 1st gen Explorer though hell and it always held up, earning great respect from the "big dawgs" in the club. (And earning the nickname, "The Idiot Stocker.") The truck was christened "BamBam" because of the frequent sounds ringing out from the factory skid plates. Now that Trint is "grown-up" (quotation marks intentional), he's a bit less inclined to dent up his pretty Toyota Tacoma, but still feels the same way about superior engineering. Trint's love for the mountains was ingrained at a very early age. 8mm film exists of 18-month-old Trint in a backpack on his dad's back while riding dirt bikes through the mountains of Red River, NM. Although Trint does enjoy a good, tough, technical rock trail, he can often be found on easier, winding, Alpine roads just taking the glory of God's country.
For individual use only, not to be shared.