Radical Hill

Montezuma, Colorado (Summit County)

Last Updated: 08/07/2019
5 / 5 ( 24 reviews )
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Information
Nearby Trails
Status: Open
Typically Open: 07/16 - 10/31
Length: 2.6 miles
Highest Elevation: 12649 feet
Duration: About 1 hour
Shape of Trail: Straight Through
Best Direction to Travel: West
Nearest Town: Montezuma
Nearest Town w/ Services: Keystone
Official Road Name: 286
Management Agency: White River National Forest
District: Dillon Ranger District
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Highlights

Highlight: Radical Hill
A short, narrow, white-knuckle 4wd climb with several tight switchbacks leading to amazing views above 12,600 feet. Not recommended for full width vehicles, but great for anything else!

Weather

7 day forecast for Radical Hill

Route Information

Technical Rating

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Community Consensus

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Waypoints

1. FS 286 (0 mi)
Start Radical Hill at FS 286 off of Webster Pass heading west.

Directions to Trailhead

Trailhead Coordinates: 39.537510, -105.841370
From the South: Take Highway 285 from Denver past Grant, then turn right on County Road 60. You will see signs to both Webster Pass and Red Cone at just over 5 miles. Either one will take you to Radical Hill after you have driven over the summits. Red Cone will connect back to Webster Pass where you will continue heading west. Once you have dropped back down into the trees, cross the creek, and the trail will be immediately on your left. From the North: Take Montezuma Road from Keystone through the town of Montezuma. Look for signs directing towards Webster Pass on your left. Turn left on Bullion Mine Road. Follow this up over the first creek crossing and look for forest road 286 on your right. If you reach the second creek crossing you have just passed it.

Camping

Dispersed

Trail Reviews (36)

Author:
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Rating:
The rock obstacles are nothing like the pics. They obstacles have changed. We were able to make it up on 33s with the right line but the obstacle is about a 3ft ledge now.
Author:
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Ran Redcone to Radical Hill. 26 degrees of roll on the second switch back, so make sure you know where your wheels are. Great trail!
Author:
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Rating:
Trail is open and in good condition. Definitely got a little tippy in the switchbacks hitting 25 degrees of roll in the process. Great views at the top and perfect spot for lunch. Would highly recommend coming up to the top from Webster to get the uphill right of way. Backing up would be a challenge.
Author:
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Trail is in good condition. Great way to celebrate my 50th. The only unexpected obstacle was quite ridiculous. There was a very under equipped Subaru on a flat spare tire blocking half of the trail just after the cabin. Hopefully the impediment is gone soon and the driver keeps to a more appropriate trail for the vehicle. The rock slide is easily traversed and the off camber area is very off camber.
Author:
Social Media:
Status: Impassable
Offroaded on:
Rating:
7/22/21 a rock slide has blocked the trail at the upper switchbacks section above the cabin. [Update 8/10/21 this section has been repaired]
Author:
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Rating:
I ran up this yesterday and had a good time, there’s really only one tough obstacle and a while of off camber discomfort above a nice sheer edge. The views from the top are pretty good, despite the smoke.
Author:
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Rating:
Ran Red Cone into Radical Hill, which is open all the way to the top. Plenty of water on the trail up to the switch backs. Hit 26 degrees of roll on the second switch back going up, which helps to tighten your grip on the wheel. The challenge on this trail is paying attention and taking it slow if you're in a full size vehicle. I ran in a 2021 JLUR Ecodiesel on 37" tires and my passenger wheels were hugging the edge most of the way up the switch backs.
Author:
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Rating:
There is no snow on the trail. Ran it in a Can Am Maverick Sport XRC with no problem.
Author:
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Rating:
Just a bit of snow to get through before the last few switchbacks! Made it up in an 07 FJC, no sway bars, rear locked.
Author:
Status: Impassable
Offroaded on:
I ran deer creek from Montezuma to the top of radical hill. I decided to hike down the hill to recon it for a future run. I found lots of rockfall onto the trail. Big rocks all over. I'm sure it happens every year. Lower down there was lots of snow. It looked like avalanche debris. Probably 20 feet deep. What was impressive is that a motorcycle rider had made it all the way up by riding on right side out of the snow. I went to the cabin then back up. Amazing area !!
Author:
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Rating:
This trail is awesome. It’s the most exciting way to connect to saints john. It’s harder than red cone but it really wasn’t to difficult for my Cherokee. Ground clearance is definitely needed on this trail. 33” tires are sufficient to claw to the top. Loved the boulders and ledges to crawl over.
Author:
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Rating:
This is likely the most challenging trail I have been on, and I have been on lots! This makes Red Cone look like a 2 wheel drive road! I completed this is a 2012 Teryx4. I hit bottom on numerous occasions and got high centered on one rock garden. I was able to back off and add some rocks in the hole and made it over on the second try. This road will challenge you! The shelf road at the top is challenging with the rocks, the narrow road and the incline. I would suggest going up this instead of down it. We were able to do it without hitting any traffic but I would hate to have to back up the shelf road. I am surprised there aren't more accidents on this road but maybe it scares off anyone in a rental or without experience. For my money, this is one of the prettiest drives in Colorado but the driver won't be doing much site seeing or picture taking!!
Author:
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Rating:
Ran this after Red cone. Makes Red cone look easy. The boulder section at WP 3 is rough even with 33s. The shelf isn't bad even in my Hummer H3. This really should be a one way only trail though!
Author:
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Rating:
Accidentally hit Radical in my Raptor earlier this week from the top. By the time I realized I was on the shelf road it seemed better to proceed forward than reverse up - in hindsight I should have reversed out. Never do this in a full sized vehicle (which I knew before hand), especially not a Raptor - the shelf is slightly narrower than the Raptor in places. It was not just frightening, it was extremely dangerous. In different conditions this story would have ended differently. I post this only to say that "full sized vehicles are not recommended" ought to really be "never try this in a full sized vehicle". In my estimation even in a normal full sized truck this would be just stupid to attempt. If nothing else it weakens the road for vehicles that ought to be on Radical. Be safe all
Author:
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Rating:
Nothing to see other than this Moose!
Author:
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Rating:
Went down and returned back up when I ran into these folks uprighting a Jeep near the bottom. As of 7/19/20 it’s finally snow free!
Author:
Status: Impassable
Offroaded on:
Snow on the Webster pass side.
Author:
Status: Impassable
Offroaded on:
Still blocked by snow in several spots
Author:
Status: Impassable
Offroaded on:
Trail is still covered in snow halfway up.
Author:
Status: Not Reported
Offroaded on:
Rating:
The rock garden was serious, and pretty dug up, forcing you to pick good lines. The tilt was close to 30 degrees on the tippy part, which is about 9.5 pucker factor with a roof top tent. You have to know your vehicle. I know a trail is good when I don't take many photos. I did make it up in a long bed taco.
Author: Official Crew
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Rating:
Trail is open and passable. Super narrow in spots due to runoff chutes, so just be careful and use good judgment with your vehicle.
Author: Official Crew
Social Media:
Status: Impassable
Offroaded on:
Rating:
The USFS gate on the north side of Webster Pass is still closed, so there's no way to get to the bottom of Radical Hill. I drove up from Deer Creek and flew my drone over the trail. The shelf at WP 5 and the switchback below that are still blocked with snow. From what I could tell, the trail may have a new and pretty severe washout just before WP 5.
Author:
Status: Impassable
Offroaded on:
Rating:
Trail is blocked by lots of snow in the switchbacks. From the top it also looked like some of the road is gone from a rock slide in the mine area. From what I saw from a distance, this road will be impassable even when the snow melts.
Author:
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Rating:
Ran this trail with a group of stock and very modified vehicles. The most stock vehicle we had was an 89 YJ with 30" tires and 1" lift, fully open diffs. We were able to do the trail in its entirety (from Red Cone) without problems. We had spotters on the rock obstacles for the near stock vehicles but no damage occured. A word of advice don't run the top half of this trail with your sway bar disconnected! We had a few Jeeps (3 - 6" of lift) run without their sway bars and they were puckering on some of the off camber ledges!
Author:
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Rating:
Ran Radical Hill from top to bottom in the FJ Cruiser (3” lift, 33” KO2s at 20psi, Rear Locker). It was an interesting ride with a 260lb RTT on top. The very narrow shelf halfway down was the most tippy, no inclometer in my FJC, but I can tell you it’s the most camber you’ll ever want to see with a heavy RTT and higher center of gravity. The two rock obstacles are very easy going down. Lots of fun and lots of adrenaline, but use extreme caution if you’re running anything more than a side by side.
Author:
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Rating:
Last of the snow has melted and the trail is open all the way to the top.
Author:
Status: Partially Open
Offroaded on:
Rating:
Snow is still blocking the trail at point 5 but you can still ride the trail up to the blockage from either side.
Author: Official Crew
Status: Impassable
Offroaded on:
Rating:
The gate on Webster was just opened so we drove up to see how far we could get on Radical. The trail is very wet with a lot of runoff coming down the trail. Many areas are very soft and muddy so please tread lightly. We made it only 1 mile before a large snowfield blocks the trail.
Author: Official Crew
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Afternoon showers and a little bit of sleet greeted us on our trip up Radical Hill. The wetness made the rocks a bit slippery at obstacles 1 and 2, but easily passable. Because we completed the trip during the weekday, we encountered very little traffic making the ride smooth sailing. No luck seeing the mountain goats today.
Author: Official Crew
Social Media:
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Rating:
We took Radical Hill after doing Red Cone to work our way down to Breckenridge. Early morning is a beautiful time to do this trail with no crowd and excellent morning sun. The trail was wet and with some slight off camber spots around old tailings just before Waypoint 5, it was a little tricky with the slippery conditions and tippy factor. We were greeted at the top with a herd of a dozen goats, 4 of which were kids. From there we continued to Deer Creek to Saint John and then down North Fork Swan River.
Author:
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
We could not get up it on 31s and no lockers. Maybe with lockers you would be ok. Not sure what conditions were like beyond ice obstacle.
Author: Official Crew
Status: Partially Open
Offroaded on:
The seasonal gate on Webster is open so you can access the bottom of the trail. You can also access the top of the trail via North Fork Swan that is currently clear and open. However, the switchbacks in the basin are still covered in a bit of snow. You can see the trail in the basin in the right side of the attached photo.
Author: Official Crew
Social Media:
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
The late coming of winter in 2016 means that most of the high passes are still open in mid November. Radical is still clear of snow, but the lower section (between the two rock obstacles) has significant ice. There are enough rocks poking through that it's passable, but incredibly slick. The forest service will be closing gates on November 23rd, so there's only one weekend left.
Author:
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Great climb of a narrow shelf road, with a short section off camber looking out and down, not for the fait at heart. Then a short section that is as narrow as a Jeep. Great views all the way up, if you like shelf roads and climbs, this is one you need to try out.
Author:
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
comin down hairier than goin up. My Pioneer 700 handled it fine. Second trip on this hill just as puckering as first.
Author:
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Rating:
This was a fun and scenic trail. However, this trail is NOT for the beginner. There are several places where you have to travel over large rocks. There's several switchbacks and several places where you could easily go over the side of a cliff. Once you get to the top, we saw a whole herd of mountain goats that came right up to us. It was an amazing experience.

Questions & Answers (1)

Q: Anyone done this in a full-size F150? I know it would be close, but wondering if it is possible.
–Nick Obletz (06/19/2018)
–Todd (06/19/2018)

Writer Information

Ryan Boudreau

Mapping Crew - Colorado

Hi, I'm Ryan! I am a Colorado native and I've been wheeling since I was 16 years old. I grew up with a relentless passion for all things Jeep and off road related, and that passion has never died out. I am a member of the Mile-Hi Jeep Club, Patrol 16 Sasquatch Jeepers and currently own an '06 Jeep Wrangler Rubicon Unlimited (LJ) nicknamed "Minion". I am a huge supporter of Stay the Trail and Tread Lightly, and have participated and even been in charge of many trail restoration projects. I have been a trail leader several times for events such as All-4-Fun, ColoradoFest, Set Them Free, 14er Fest, and other. I am also the creator of the Unlimited LJ Adventure. My rig is built for extreme offroading, but I love to get my tires dirty on any kind of trail whether it's rock crawling or just scenic high Alpine drives. I've wheeled all over the country including Colorado, Utah, Kansas, the Carolinas, AZ, and California. I love a great adventure, and love even more to share those adventures with others. If you see the "minion" out on the trail, make sure to stop and say hello.
For individual use only, not to be shared.