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Hiking & Walking: Colorado > White River National Forest > Eagle Ranger District

Quick Facts

Lake Charles Trail

Average Time: 4-5 Hours
Beginning Elevation: 9,400 Feet (2930.2 Meters)
Difficulty: More Difficult
Elevation Gain, One-way: 1,900 Feet (592.3 Meters)
Length, One-way: 5.7 Miles (9.5 Kilometers)
Recommended Season: June-September
Trail Number: 1,899
Usage: Heavy
USGS Maps: Crooked Creek Pass, Mount Jackson




Satellite and Topo Map




General Description

Meadow and East Brush Creek, along Lake Charles Trail
Copyright: Zander Higbie-Interactive Outdoors, Inc.
Meadow and East Brush Creek, along Lake Charles Trail
This high use trail follows the East Brush Creek up to both Lake Charles (4.4 miles) and Mystic Island Lake (5.7 miles) in the Holy Cross Wilderness. The trail is a gradual climb with grades less than 10%, but there are two short areas that are quite steep. There are some stream crossings and the trail is rocky with exposed tree roots. The forest type is aspen in the beginning quickly changing to a dense pine, spruce and fir stand. At the 1.5 mile mark the trail enters the Holy Cross Wilderness Area. Please practice wilderness ethics to help preserve this special resource.

SPECIAL INTERESTS
FISHING - This trail offers good fishing in three areas. East Brush Creek has rainbow, brook and brown trout. Both Lake Charles and Mystic Island Lake have Colorado native cutthroat trout.

SCENIC VIEWS - At Lake Charles there are spectacular views of Fool's Peak, 12,947 feet and there is a classic glacial cirque at the end of the valley. When arriving at the alpine lake of Mystic Island, there is a glacial tarn to the left and at 13,768 feet, Eagle peak stands behind the lake.

CAMPING
Fulford Cave campground has 7 sites with picnic tables, fire ring grills and drinking water.

Directions from Eagle: Follow the Brush Creek Road, south of Eagle for 10 miles. Turn left onto the East Brush Creek Road, FDR 415 and drive another 6 miles. The last mile of FDR 415 is very narrow with some rocks. There is a parking lot just past the Fulford Cave campground. At the trailhead, there is an information board and a register box. A vault toilet is available for use in the campground.

Directions from Vail: Travel west on I-70 to Eagle (exit #147). Turn left and drive into Eagle. Turn left on Capitol Street and follow to Brush Creek Road. Turn left and follow Brush Creek Road10 miles south of Eagle. Turn left onto the East Brush Creek Road, FDR 415 and drive another 6 miles. The last mile of FDR 415 is very narrow with some rocks. There is a parking lot just past the Fulford Cave campground. At the trailhead, there is an information board and a register box. A vault toilet is available for use in the campground.

Directions from Beaver Creek: Travel west on I-70 to Eagle (exit #147). Turn left and drive into Eagle. Turn left on Capitol Street and follow to Brush Creek Road. Turn left and follow Brush Creek Road10 miles south of Eagle. Turn left onto the East Brush Creek Road, FDR 415 and drive another 6 miles. The last mile of FDR 415 is very narrow with some rocks. There is a parking lot just past the Fulford Cave campground. At the trailhead, there is an information board and a register box. A vault toilet is available for use in the campground.

Seasonal Information:
Recommended Season: June through September .



Current Conditions & Trip Reports
Updated: 2001-06-26 14:41:00.0


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Filed By: Robin (Aurora, CO)
Length of Time: 4 hours
Difficulty: Moderate
Number of People Encountered: 11-25 ppl
Recommend to a Friend: Highly
Report: Steady upward climb. We were unable to locate the trail that leads to Charles Peak.
Conditions: Fairly wet, only a little snow left. Very little wood available for campfires at either lake.
Water Availability: Water water everywhere



Recreation Opportunities
Activity Remarks On Site
ICON Backpacking
Yes
ICON Camping Fulford Cave campground has 7 sites with picnic tables, fire ring grills and drinking water.
Yes
ICON Cold Water Fishing East Brush Creek, Lake Charles, and Mystic Island Lake
Yes
ICON Hiking & Walking Lake Charles Trail
Yes
ICON Hunting
Yes
ICON Viewing Scenery The areas surrounding Lake Charles and Mystic Island Lake provide beautiful alpine scenery.
Yes



Related Activities
Brush Creek General Forest Area - This area south of Eagle includes both the East and West Brush Creek drainages.

Fulford Cave Campground - This small campground is located south of Eagle up East Brush Creek at an elevation of 9,400 feet.

Ironedge Trail - The Ironedge Trail begins at the Fulford Cave Campground. It crosses East Brush Creek, leads up to the ridge separating the Lime and East Brush Creek drainages, then down to Lake Charles.

Yeoman Park Campground - This scenic campground with 23 sites sits along East Brush Creek south of Eagle, at an elevation of 9,000 feet.



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