Ice Skating

ice skating

When temperatures allow, the Town of Lake City maintains an excellent outdoor ice rink for skaters of all skill levels and interests. Located on the west side of the historic Armory building and Town Hall, the rink is near the intersection of Bluff and 3rd streets.

Ice skating is also popular at Lake San Cristobal where a Zamboni smooths the ice near the boat dock. 

 

 

 

 

 

Fat Biking

fat bikingThe local Lake City Continental Divide Snowmobile Clun grooms and marks over 100 miles of trails along the Continental Divide and on the Alpine Plateau, areas ideal for fat biking. With wide, smooth trails, fat bikers can cruise along the trails while the peaks of the surrounding San Juan mountain range surround them.

Ride the following trails on your fat bat and you’ll surely incite some envy from your biking buddies.

Slumgullion Pass Trails

There are two access points on Slumgullion Pass. You can explore westward from Highway 149 into the mountainous area above Lake San Cristobal and onward to the Continental Divide. Or, you can travel eastward to Deer Lake and continue southward along the edge of the La Garita Wilderness.

#1 - Deer Lakes

The Deer Lakes trailhead is on the east side of Highway 149 at the turnoff for FS Rd 788 toward Deer Lake Campground between mile markers 62 and 63. Travel eastward along the groomed multi-use trail about 4 miles then take the left turn and travel ½ mile to Deer Lakes.

#2 - Multi-Use Trail #8, Sawmill Park

The large parking area is in on the east side of Highway 149 at mile marker 66 and includes interpretive signage overlooking the Slumgullion Slide. Cross the highway to get onto the trail. This trail climbs through the trees to the Sawmill Park and continues up to Trail #3 in Rambouillet Park and further up to the Continental Divide.

Spring Creek Pass Area

There are trails headed off from both sides of the highway where the Continental Divide crosses Highway 149. Traveling westward, you’ll access the huge, open mountaintop of Jarosa Mesa and an extensive network of trails taking you to remote places including Rio Hondo Reservoir State Wildlife Area and Horsethief Mountain. Or, head southward to connect with the trails on Slumgullion Pass.

#4 - Multi-Use Trail #3, Westbound

This trail starts where the Continental Divide Trail crosses Highway 149 at mile marker 55. There is a large parking lot on the west side of the highway well marked by signage and including a toilet and information signs. Travel westward along the groomed trail to a big, open mountaintop—Jarosa Mesa. This trail accesses many branches and loops marked as Trails #7, #7A, #9, #10A, #10, #11, and #3A.

#4 - Multi-Use Trail #3, Eastbound

Park in the same lot as described for #3, Westbound. You’ll access the trail directly across Highway 149. After a short climb through the trees, you’ll be on aptly named Snow Mesa following the Continental Divide Trail. This trail is groomed by the Creede Snowmobile Club, and you can continue to access Bristol Head or travel all the way to Creede.

Alpine Plateau Area

The Alpine plateau stretches south from Lake City all the way to Blue Mesa Reservoir near the dam. You can follow the Soldier Creek drainage for 10 miles to Big Blue Campground. Or, you can turn south from the drainage and follow the length of the plateau all the way to Arrowhead Lodge near Highway 50.

#5 - Big Blue Campground

Parking for this multi-use trail is north of Lake City on the west side of Highway 149 between mile markers 83 and 84. It is marked with signs for Big Blue Creek and Forest Service Road 868. This trail follows along the Soldier Creek drainage for 10.8 miles to Big Blue Campground. The road is narrow and very curvy with switchbacks for the first few miles.

Big Blue Campground overlooks a picturesque valley adjacent to the Uncompahgre Wilderness. Six miles in, you can turn north onto the Alpine Plateau Snow Trail and travel about 14 miles to Arrowhead Lodge.

#5 - Alpine Plateau Snow Trail

The Alpine Plateau Snow Trail travels along Forest Service Road #867 along the top of the remarkable mesa, Alpine Plateau. The route is 16 miles long and connects with Arrowhead Lodge near Highway 50 between Gunnison and Montrose.

The Northern Trailhead is at Arrowhead Lodge, 5.5 miles from Highway 50 west of Gunnison. The Southern Trailhead is Forest Service Road #868, 6 miles from Highway 149.

 

Fat Bike Rentals in Lake City:

Confluence in Lake City

Cross-Country Skiing and Snowshoeing

Kids snowshoeing compressed

After the ice climbing and the snowmobiling and the ice fishing, people are often not surprised to learn Lake City is also a cross-country skiing and snowshoeing paradise.

Not only are there trails close to town, but there are also more than 100 miles of groomed trails on Slumgullion Pass and the Spring Creek Pass Area. Some cross-country skiers also head to Lake San Cristobal, where a snow-covered frozen lake beckons those seeking a ski with a jaw-dropping background.

Whatever kind of cross-country ski or snowshoe adventure you’re looking for, Lake City has it. Check out some the awesome destination listed below. We promise you will not be disappointed.

Lake City Area

#1 - Henson Creek

You can count on the locals to lay a track right up Henson Creek. Start at the south end on Bluff Street and travel on the frozen surface of the creek past the ice climbing park until the boulders are too tight to navigate. Then, return on the Creekside trail or on the road for a change of terrain.

#2 - Alpine Gulch

Alpine Gulch is best suited for snowshoeing. The parking area is about 2 ½ miles up CR 20 (access at the south end of Bluff St) on the west side. The trailhead is on the east side and is marked with signage. This route is steep, narrow, and fun. Locals trek it regularly and keep the trail packed.

snowshoeingCompressed#3 - Water Dog Lake

This steep climb is better suited for snowshoeing than for skiing. To get to the Water Dog Lake trailhead, turn east off Hwy 149 and cross the bridge next to Lake City Auto. Turn left on Water St., then right on to Ninth, and then left on to Hotchkiss where you’ll find the parking area. Travel up the road, then turn right just before the house and ascend the steep trail, continuing on to more level terrain on Horse Park.

Slumgullion Pass Area

There are two access points on Slumgullion Pass. You can ski or snowshoe westward from Highway 149 into the mountainous area above Lake San Cristobal and onward to the Continental Divide. Or, you can travel eastward to Deer Lake and continue southward along the edge of the La Garita Wilderness.

#4 - Deer Lakes

The Deer Lakes trailhead is on the east side of Highway 149 at the turnoff for FS Rd 788 toward Deer Lake Campground between mile markers 62 and 63. Travel eastward along the groomed multi-use trail about 4 miles then take the left turn and travel ½ mile to Deer Lakes.

#5 - Multi-Use Trail #8, Sawmill Park

The large parking area is in on the east side of Highway 149 at mile marker 66 and includes interpretive signage overlooking the Slumgullion Slide. Cross the highway to get onto the trail. This trail climbs through the trees to the Sawmill Park and continues up to Trail #3 in Rambouillet Park and further up to the Continental Divide.

Spring Creek Pass Area

There are trails headed off from both sides of the highway where the Continental Divide crosses Highway 149. Traveling westward, you’ll access the huge, open mountaintop of Jarosa Mesa and an extensive network of trails taking you to remote places including Rio Hondo Reservoir State Wildlife Area and Horsethief Mountain. Or, head southward to connect with the trails on Slumgullion Pass.

#6 - Multi-Use Trail #3, Westbound

This trail starts where the Continental Divide Trail crosses Highway 149 at mile marker 55. There is a large parking lot on the west side of the highway well marked by signage and including a toilet and information signs. Travel westward along the groomed trail to a big, open mountaintop—Jarosa Mesa. This trail accesses many branches and loops marked as Trails #7, #7A, #9, #10A, #10, #11, and #3A.

#6 - Multi-Use Trail #3, Eastbound

Park in the same lot as described for #3, Westbound. You’ll access the trail directly across Highway 149. After a short climb through the trees, you’ll be on aptly named Snow Mesa following the Continental Divide Trail. This trail is groomed by the Creede Snowmobile Club, and you can continue to access Bristol Head or travel all the way to Creede.

Equipment Rental and Guides

The Sportsman Outdoor and Fly Shop

Ski Hill and Terrain Park

SkiHillCompressedIn the wake of the mega ski resort boom, it’s a comfort to know Colorado still has a few local ski hills that remain treasures of their communities.

Lake City’s Ski Hill and Terrain Park is such a place, a ski hill representing what skiing used to be, where prices are low, rentals are free, and a strong sense of community permeates everyone on the snow.

With 14 skiable acres, six trails, and one terrain park, the ski hill isn’t huge. But what it lacks in size, it makes up for in price. For $20 ($10 for kids 17 and under), you can ski all day—rental gear included! This makes the Lake City Ski Hill ideal for anyone who wants to give skiing a try, young children, or someone who just doesn’t want to spend $100 or more for a day pass elsewhere.

Lake City’s Ski Hill has a single Poma lift that was moved from Arapahoe Basin in 1966. It’s the oldest operation lift in the state, and when it came to Lake City, the ski area was operating under its old name, Lake City Winter Wonderland. Today, the lift carries skiers and snowboarders 1000 feet up the hillside.

 

Lake City Ski Hill represents a fading era of the snow sport. If you’re curious about what skiing used to be and want to have a great day too, look no further than Lake City.

Learn more about the Lake City Ski Hill.

 

Ice Fishing

icefishing2 Compressed

Many locals and visitors can’t wait for things to “ice up” in and around Lake City so they can enjoy their favorite winter sports. Fishing with bait and jigging are common Lake San Cristobal ice fishing tactics either employed from a warm fishing hut or while braving the elements.

Guaranteed ice on nearby Lake San Cristobal makes this natural lake a popular destination for ice fishermen. Not only is Lake San Cristobal close to town and the second largest natural lake in Colorado, but it’s also nestled among the San Juans where gorgeous views drape every corner. As a bonus, Lake San Cristobal is one of only a few lakes in Colorado where you can leave your hut on the ice all season!

In February, Lake San Cristobal's boat dock fills with fishermen vying for top prizes at Lake City's Annual Ice Fishing Derby. Test your ice fishing skills alongside fishermen from all corners of southwestern Colorado, and maybe you'll walk away with the top prize.

Check out our calendar for exact dates.

Explore the following ice fishing spots. Either take an easy drive to Lake San Cristobal or challenge yourself by trekking into the backcountry for ultimate solitude. 

Lake San Cristobal

Ice fishing on Lake San Cristobal, just 4.5 miles from downtown, is super popular. Here, bait and jigging are common tactics that result in lake trout—sometimes one too big to fit through the hole!

To get to Lake San Cristobal, follow Highway 149 south out of Lake City, then turn west at the big Lake San Cristobal sign onto CR 30. The lake is one mile from here. 

Water Dog Lake

The ambitious adventurer can climb 3.8 miles to this remote lake where some locals believe a possible brook trout state record resides. Although the trailhead is right downtown, it’s best traveled using snowshoes. 

To get to the Water Dog Lake trailhead, turn east off Hwy 149 and cross the bridge next to Lake City Auto. Turn left on Water St., then right on to Ninth, and then left on to Hotchkiss where you’ll find the parking area. Travel up the road, then turn right just before the house and ascend the steep trail, continuing on to more level terrain on Horse Park.

Ice Fishing Outfitters:

Alpine Outfitters

The Sportsman Outdoors & Fly Shop

Things to Do in Lake City and Hinsdale County

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  • Explore the well-preserved history in our National Historic District, at our County Museum, and along the Silver Thread and ...
  • Stream and Lake Fishing in the area draws anglers back year after year, as faithfully as brook trout are drawn to dry ...
  • It takes only moments to hit a trail and leave civilization behind. Walking - Hiking - Horseback Riding - ...
  • A tremendous range of experiences - In-town trails for the family - Peaceful intermediate rides on trails and jeep roads - ...
  • From sparkling waterfalls, varied wildlife and vast wilderness areas, Hindsdale County offers up an array of Natural ...

  • With 96% public lands, area hunters are likely to have high harvest rates, quality animals, and a great overall ...

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  • Covered under a blanket of white for four months, Hinsdale County is a winter playground for ...

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Visitor Center Info

970.944.2527  •  info@lakecity.com

Lake City/Hinsdale County Visitor Center
800 Gunnison Avenue
PO Box 430
Lake City, CO 81235
 
Hours:
Mon - Fri  9am - 5pm
Sat-  9am - 3pm
Sun - 12 - 3pm