Just a little way north and east of Ridgeway Colorado, after the Owl Creek Trail, you will find that the Silver Jack Reservoir trail is a fantastic way to experience Colorado's high forest, Chapparal, and High desert terrain types. If you are looking for a great place to look at mature Spruce, Aspen, and Box Alder trees, lots of good camping opportunities and plentiful stream or lake fishing, this is the right trail for you.
You start out at 10,000 feet high on a Mountain pass and descend through the life zones that change during your 3,000 descent to the high desert. For a long part of the road, you parallel the Cimarron River. The views of the sawtoothed Rocky Mountains certainly do not disappoint. In fact, this whole area is peppered with streams, lakes and trails. You'll experience narrow shelf roads, limited switchbacks, and some very easy scenic driving. Camping is plentiful along bubbling creeks, under shady trees, and along the roadside dispersed areas. It's a short hop on US Highway 50 back to Montrose, Colorado from the trail's end.
Drove this for the first time to access some hiking. There are some nice views and interesting mountains for sure. It was a nice break from driving the highway. I did get stuck behind a truck going under the limit and not pulling over for the entire drive while we were the only 2 cars on the entire road so that was unfortunate. It is a long road.
Bing showed me the Uncompaghre National Forest today and I discovered on Bing that they have the road at Waypoint #4 as NF-85836. Be aware that this small campground road might be different in your navigation software. I can't wait to get back out here and explore County Road H1!
I moved to Arizona in 1984 and bought my first offroad vehicle the next year. I had lots of adventures, seeking out the Old West on paper topo maps in my Toyota FJ40 and can say, fortunately, that I never had to walk home. In 2005 I saw the prototype for the FJ Cruiser, and in the middle of my FJ40 resto project, someone came into my garage with cash and bought it out from under me. (Some regrets) In 2008, I flew out to LA to pick up my FJ Cruiser, special ordered with the Offroad Package (Locker) and MT6. My area of operations has been Southern Arizona, from the New Mexico to California borders.
I have been an active member of AZFJ.org where I'm the top post contributor, and have many trail reviews posted there that I plan on enhancing, revisiting and documenting for this authoritative source. I have a login to Ih8Mud and fjcruiserforums but don't lurk there very much.
in my career, I've had the pleasure of traveling in Canada, the Caribbean, and Australia but never had the opportunity to wheel there. (bucket list). But, I hope my 30 years of Southern Arizona discovery, teaching and leading people into the backcountry will finally benefit a wider audience here on Trailsoffroad. There's nothing I enjoy more than finding a historic site, a little-used trail that had significance or the opportunity to take that one photo that defines what we do. (I stink but I'm willing to learn).
Oh..Added benefit...I'm the GIS analyst for a fire dept and as such have some skills in ArcGIS.