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Hiking & Walking: Colorado > Rio Grande National Forest > Saguache Ranger District

Quick Facts

Machin Basin Trail

Beginning Elevation: 12,500 Feet (3896.5 Meters)
Difficulty: More Difficult
Elevation Gain: 600 Feet (187.0 Meters)
Ending Elevation: 13,100 Feet (4083.5 Meters) Trail continues into Gunnison National Forest.
Length, One-way: 7.0 Miles (11.67 Kilometers)
Trail Number: 784
Usage: Heavy
USGS Maps: Creede

Satellite and Topo Map

General Description

The trail has had no major maintenance recently and is poorly marked. Several slide rock areas should be traversed carefully, especially if using pack stock. (The trail is not recommended for horse travel).

This route allows opportunities for numerous circuits all over the Wilderness. Major attractions are fishing at Machin Lake, excellent scenery, diverse wildlife and rugged terrain. The trail is closed to motorized traffic.

Directions from Saguache, Colorado: Travel northwest on Colorado Highway 114 for 22.0 miles. Follow Forest Road # 750 west/northwest 18.7 miles over Cochetopa Pass. Take Forest Road # 787 south 16.4 miles back over the Continental Divide to Stonecellar Campground. Follow the jeep road west 6 miles from Stonecellar Campground along the Middle Fork to a corral. The trail leaves down the hill toward the creek and to the west. The trail is closed to motorized traffic. Continue on Middle Fork Trail # 783 to Machin Basin # 784 trail.

Directions: Via Gunnison National Forest

Directions: Via Middle Fork Cutoff Trail #888

Directions: Via Benito Trail #867

Directions: Via Twin Peaks Trail #782

Directions: Via Halfmoon Creek Trail #914

Directions: Via La Garita Stock Driveway #787

Seasonal Information:
Normally Open: May through September .

Current Conditions & Trip Reports

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Recreation Opportunities
Activity Remarks On Site
ICON Cold Water Fishing Machin Lake
ICON Hiking & Walking Machin Basin Trail
ICON Horseback Riding Traverse slide rock areas carefully.
ICON Viewing Scenery Wilderness area provides beautiful views

Related Activities
Middle Fork Cut-Off Trail - The trail offers an alternative or circuit route to Machin Lake from the Middle Fork trail. It is steep and poorly marked; it has been staked for future reconstruction.

Middle Fork Trail - The trail provides a direct route to Machin Lake via the Middle Fork of Saguache Creek. Attractions are fishing in the lake and creeks, a waterfall midway, diverse wildlife, and excellent scenery.

More Information
Frequently Asked Questions
Email the Local Ranger

Visitor Information:

Saguache Ranger Station, 46525 Colorado Highway 114, P.O. Box 67 , Saguache, CO, 81149, Phone: 719-655-2553, TTY: 719-655-2547


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