Barbour Fork  
Maps:    
USGS 7.5' Map: Idaho Springs
Statistics:
Difficulty: Number: Miles: Altitude: Obstacles: Time:
Easy - 4 FR194.2, FR733.2B 9.4 8,500 to 10,370 ft. Hill - 2 2-3 hours
County: Clear Creek
Adopted by: Front Range 4x4    
Managed by: Arapaho and Roosevelt National Forest,
Clear Creek Ranger District
101 Chicago Creek Road
P.O. Box 3307
Idaho Springs, CO 80452
303-567-3000
Summary: Barbour Fork is a loop road that contains a few moderate obstacles and some scenic views. The upper section is a narrow dead end spur with lots of trees that brush your vehicle.
Attractions: One short rocky hill climb and a long loose hill climb. There are also two nice scenic views. Most of the 4WD road runs through the trees with little opportunity for views.
Seasonal
Closure:
Agnecy - December 2 to June 16 to minimize disturbances during the elk calving season.
Best Time: June - Upper section may still be snowed in
July - Best
August - Best
September - Best
October - Possible early snows
Trail Heads
Accessed:

Camping: There are quite a few dispersed camp sites on both sides of the loop, most on the west side.
Base Camp: This area would not be a good base camp as this is the only 4WD road that can be done here. You will have to drive out to Idaho Springs to access other 4WD roads.
Fall Colors: Poor - The upper parts of Barbour Fork are all pine. The lower sections around the meadows have some aspen.
Navigation: From I-70, take exit 240 north into Idaho Springs. Follow Miner Street to Soda Creek Road, which goes under the interstate and past Indian Springs Resort. Follow Soda Creek Road for approximately 3 miles to a large turn out. This is the parking area for Barbour Fork, the 4WD road continues up the creek.
History:
Description:
There is a large parking area just before the entrance to Barbour Fork, FR194.2. There are a few small obstacles to climb as you head up the road following the creek. You will come to an intersection with FR194.2A to the left and FR194.2 to the right. Either direction will run the loop. Following the right will take you to a meadow with a short rocky hill climb. At the top is a flat area that is nice for camping or a lunch stop.

Continuing on FR194.2 you will pass a camp site with a nice scenic view, after which the road will climb through the trees. The next intersection is with FR194.2D to the left and then shortly after is another left, FR733.2B. The road to the right at these intersections is FR194.2 continuing into the forest. The road is narrow with lots of trees that brush the side of your vehicle. After about 1 mile FR194.2 will dead end at a small turnaround.

At either of the previous intersections going left will continue the loop and start to head down toward the long rocky hill. It is mostly loose rock with a few steps. There are a few switchbacks before you come out in a large meadow.

This area is private property, stay on the 4WD road. You will pass a pair of old outhouses before coming to a pavilion. The road continues along the edge of the meadow before leaving private property and dropping down a narrow section with large rock outcroppings on the other side of the creek. There are a few dispersed camp sites at the top of the outcroppings.

Shortly you will come to an intersection. To the right is FR194.2A, which runs on the other side of the creek from FR194.2 taking you back to the entrance, and to the left is a short section that connects you back into FR194.2 near the first hill climb.
Data updated: August 3, 2011        4WD Road driven: July 11, 2011        Copyright 4X4Explore.com - 2000-2012