Due to unprecedented and historic fire conditions, U.S. Forest Service-Arapaho & Roosevelt National Forests and Pawnee National Grassland is temporarily closing all National Forest land in Clear Creek, Jefferson, Gilpin, Boulder, and Larimer counties. The decision to be re-evaluated daily. SEE CLOSURE ORDER

Transfer Trail

Glenwood Springs, Colorado (Garfield County)

Last Updated: 10/15/2020
5 / 5 ( 7 reviews )
Information
Nearby Trails
Status: Open
Typically Open: 06/03 - 11/13
Permit Information: Permit Required - Click Here
Length: 21.2 miles
Highest Elevation: 10871 feet
Duration: About 5 hours
Shape of Trail: Connector
Best Direction to Travel: North
Nearest Town: Glenwood Springs
Nearest Town w/ Services: Glenwood Springs
Official Road Name: 602
Management Agency: White River National Forest
District: Eagle-Holy Cross Ranger District
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Highlights

Highlight: Transfer Trail
The Transfer Trail, situated near Glenwood Springs, Colorado is the main overland route into the White River National Forest SE Flat Tops area. The road delivers you deep into the heart of meadows filled with wildflowers, thick forest of spruce, fir, pine and aspen trees and scenic lakes. Mixed into the experience are vistas of the distant Elk Mountains to the south, and No Name Creek when you find yourself at Windy Point overlook. This off-road route was originally part of the Ute Indian Trail System, then later became a toll road for the Hip Roof Saw Mill at Windy Point. A sheep farmer then bought the land and herded sheep in the area. The old road system connected through the Flat Tops to distant towns such as Meeker and Yampa. Although the Mill and much of the old road system is long gone, the Transfer Trail remains.

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Weather

7 day forecast for Transfer Trail

Route Information

Technical Rating:
(MODERATE )

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Waypoints

1. Glenwood Trailhead (0 mi)
Travel past the iron sign along the shelf road. From here the road is narrow with little passing.

Directions to Trailhead

Trailhead Coordinates: 39.568390, -107.317873

Starting Point: Glenwood Springs, Colorado

Glenwood Springs trailhead: take I-70 west to exit 116 and follow North River Drive to turn left on 6th Street. Turn right on Traver Trail, then right on Transfer Trail. The trailhead is marked with a steel sign. North trailhead: Adams Lake Waypoint 3.

Camping

Dispersed

Trail Reviews (12)

Author: Official Crew
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
The trail is back open. Only trails within the fire perimeter are still closed. See the new closure map here: https://www.fs.usda.gov/Internet/FSE_DOCUMENTS/fseprd811257.pdf

Author:
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Lots of mud, but the trail is open and passable in it's entirety.

Author:
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Rating:
Fully passable with no issues. Great trail coming from Coffee pot road. Great views of the valley below and many Aspens with color!

Author:
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Rating:
Wow, this trail was a doozy. Myself and 3 friends did this in a 2011 FJ Cruiser on 33in tires and a 2.5 inch lift and a stock 2019 Tacoma TRD Off-Road. We stopped a ton to fish and take pictures but overall I’d say it could take about 5 hrs to complete. Definitely worth airing down to cushion the ride as it’s super bumpy. There were a few tough obstacles here and there but nothing too crazy. I pulled the Tacoma out of a mud bog so it’s worth mentioning that it recommended to go with a friend or at least bring some recovery boards along if you’re gonna go it alone. The views are gorgeous and plenty of spots to camp. The “lakes” to me were mostly just giant puddles. No fish in most of them. We didn’t catch fish until we got to Deep Lake which is at the end of the trail. All-in-all, an amazing trip that we still talk about all the time. Take care of the land and enjoy!

Author:
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Rating:
Passable the entire length with caution: lockers may be required unless you illegally bypass the many bogs, of which there are many, sadly. A couple of manageable snow drifts but lots of bogs remain. Pulling an off-road trailer, I managed all but one with open diffs and got stuck -and deep- in the large one just north of Haypress Lake. A little effort and locked diffs and I made it out. I would not attempt with open diffs and no support to winch out if needed as there are no trees within most winch line length from which to winch (tongue twister). Unless someone happens by, you'll be there a while as there's no cell service. Riding solo and tired from our 4 day trip, I opted to use the legal bypass for the bog just north of Windy Point.

Author:
Status: Impassable
Offroaded on:
Yep, still impassable! We made it about 5 miles up and hit a wall of snow. Ended up camping there and shooting down to Coffee Pot Road and went up the other side and it was open for a long way up (we found a camp site before we ran into anything).

Author: Official Crew
Status: Seasonal Closure
Offroaded on:
Rating:
A new seasonal closure was implemented for upper Transfer Trail above Glenwood Springs. Closure started Nov. 23 to maintain conditions for snowmobiling. Not sure of the date the gate will open again. Call the local BLM office to check in the spring.

Author: Official Crew
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Rating:
This trail is absolutely fantastic. We started this trail in Glenwood Springs. I recommend running this trail as the guide intends because it is uphill this direction. There were very few places for the downhill traffic to safely turn around. Lots of beautiful lakes, lots of fun foresty whoopy sections, lots of stunning scenery. This trail gets it's rating from 1 spot in particular, waypoint 19. This waypoint took some spotting since it was dry and rutted out, but we all made it up first try. The rest of the trail is fairly easy. There is so much to see up here, just make sure you have enough time!

Author:
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
This is a fantastic and very scenic trail. However, the route plotted here does not follow what maps call transfer trail. If you are in a stock SUV or truck, be sure to follow the gpx waypoints on this site and don't follow what Google maps or your in vehicle navigation calls transfer trail or you will end up taking White Owl Lake Trail to Grizzly Jeep Trail. To avoid those more difficult trails, be sure to take the hard left at waypoint 21. We ended up taking grizzly Jeep trail back to Coffee Pot Road, which ended up being very fun, but much more challenging than anticipated. Overall this trail ended up being one of our favorites on our road trip from Phoenix.

Author:
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Rating:
Ran this trail with a group of roughly 40 rigs.... yeah.... Actually went a lot smoother then one would imagine. I have run this trail numerous times and this is by far the driest I have ever seen it. There were only 2 small water crossings up at the top. I was able to pull an offroad teardrop trailer with minimal issue.

Author:
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Ran Transfer Trail on Saturday the 23rd of September to see fall colors with the intent of summitting Blair Mountain in the Flat Tops Wilderness Area. We had light rain to start out with in the town of Glenwood Springs with a rainbow glowing in the west - showing us glimpses of the sun and some signs of hope for our trip. The top of the canyon was shrouded by low clouds which made for awesome views as we climbed to reach the overlook at Waypoint 12. It began to snow and by the time we had reached Windy Point our visibility was down to about 50'. We continued slowly reaching Waypoint 15 before deciding to turn back as we had only seen one other vehicle coming down and the snow was accumulating on the trail to a depth of 3-4". Obstacles and deep puddles in the trail started becoming obscure and unpredictable. Transfer Trail isn't scheduled to close for a few more weeks but mother nature may decide to close it sooner!

Author: Official Crew
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
Rating:
One of my favorite trails in all of Colorado and this entire area really. Impeccable forests, lakes and meadows are to be had in this area.

Questions & Answers (1)

Q: Later this summer, we like to take our Polaris UTV side-by-side on this trail. Is that allowed? If so, is there a place to park a truck w/ trailer on the Glenwood springs side? (actually two trucks each w/ a small trailer)
–Ernie Frey (07/02/2019)
–John (07/02/2019)

Writer Information

John

Chief Technology Officer

John is a Colorado native who's been 4 wheeling since he got his first tacoma. His original goal of 4 wheeling was to get back into the campsites the Subarus couldn't quite get to. One trip after another, and now it's pretty much consumed all of his free time. He is currently living in Laporte, CO. When he is not coding for Trails Offroad or 4 wheeling, he also enjoys hiking, skiing, snowmobiling, and mountain biking.
For individual use only, not to be shared.