Crystal Mountain  
Maps:      
USGS 7.5' Map: Crystal Mountain
Statistics:
Difficulty: Number: Miles: Altitude: Obstacles: Time:
Moderate 5 FR 344A 2.00 8,480 to 9,900 ft. Rock - 2 2-3 hours
County: Larimer
Adopted by: Horsetooth 4 Wheelers
(970)663-1474
Managed by: Arapaho/Roosevelt National Forest,
Canyon Lakes Ranger District
2150 Centre Ave. Bldg. E
Fort Collins, CO 80526
(970)295-6700
Summary: Crystal Mountain is a short road to the saddle just below the peak of Crystal Mountain. It has two rock obstacles. One is a notched rock step, the other is a large rock slab with multiple routes of varying challenge
Attractions: Obstacles, Scenic Views
Seasonal
Closure:
Agency - December 1 to June 14
Best Time: June - May still be snowed in at the top
August - Best
September - Best
October - May have snow
Summer
Activities:
Hiking -

Equestrian -

Mountain Bike -

ATV -

Motorcycle -
Donner Pass FT 934
Camping: There are no dispersed campsites on the part of Crystal Mountain that crosses public lands. The lower section of 4WD road is on State Land and does not permit camping.
Base Camp: Not a good area to base camp. Private property and State lands.
Fall Colors: Good - There are some aspen in the area.
Winter
Activities:
Snowshoeing -

Cross Country Skiing-

Snowmobile -

Navigation: From Fort Collins, CO. head north on U.S. 287 N. Continue to follow U.S. 287 N for 3.7 miles. Continue onto County Rd 54G/U.S. 287 B for 2.7 miles. Take a slight left onto West County Rd 52E/Tobe Miller Lane. Continue to follow West County Rd 52E for 6.5 miles. Turn right onto West County Rd 52E/Rist Canyon Road. Continue to follow Rist Canyon Road for 6.8 miles. Turn left onto North County Rd 27/Stove Prairie Road and go 3.7 miles. Turn right onto Buckhorn Rd/West County Road 44H and go 8.5 miles. Turn left onto North Crystal Mountain Road for 0.2 miles. Take a slight left onto Fire Route 344 and go 1.0 mile. Take a slight left onto North Crystal Mountain Road and go 0.3 miles. Turn left onto North Crystal Mountain Road/Fire Route 344 and go 1.0 mile. Take the first right onto North Crystal Mountain Road and go 1.8 miles. Turn right onto a dirt road. This is the start of the Crystal Mountain 4WD road.

From Loveland, CO. head west on U.S. 34/West Eisenhower for 4.9 miles. Turn right onto North County Rd 27 and go 5.2 miles. Turn left onto Buckhorn Rd/North County Rd 27 and go 19.1 miles. Turn left onto North Crystal Mountain Road for 0.2 miles. Take a slight left onto Fire Route 344 and go 1.0 mile. Take a slight left onto North Crystal Mountain Road and go 0.3 miles. Turn left onto North Crystal Mountain Road/Fire Route 344 and go 1.0 mile. Take the first right onto North Crystal Mountain Road and go 1.8 miles. Turn right onto a dirt road. This is the start of the Crystal Mountain 4WD road.
History:
Description:
Crystal Mountain is a short 4WD road that climbs almost to the top of Crystal Mountain. The road begins as you leave the Crystal Mountain Road and follow a two track along Sheep Creek. Within a quarter of a mile you will come to the first obstacle.
Craig K

Obstacle 1

photo by:
Rachel K

Paula K

Obstacle 1

photo by:
Adam M

It is a rock slab with a notch in it. Once through this obstacle you will come into an open area with multiple routes. Straight ahead is a larger exposed rock slab with three different routes up it. Choose the one that meets your ability.
Adam M

Obstacle 2

photo by:
Kris

Ben

Obstacle 2

photo by:
Kris

Craig K

Obstacle

photo by:
Rachel K

After making it to the top of this obstacle you will follow along the rock uplift and head into the trees. The road will work its way uphill through the trees with a few tight spots to navigate. There are also a couple of small rock steps to climb.
Craig K

Upper section

photo by:
Paula K

Adam M

Upper section

photo by:
Kris

You will come to a saddle with a right turn that continues to climb north. This is a short section of the Crystal Mountain 4WD road that goes to the very top. You will come to another Y in the road that is a loop that comes back onto itself. At the top of the loop you will be as far up Crystal Mountain as you can drive.
Parking

photo by:
Kris

Parking is really limited, in fact you just have to stop in the road. From here you can climb up to the top of Crystal Mountain to take in the views.
View

photo by:
Rachel K

Head back the way you came to get to the graded Crystal Mountain Road.
Data updated: February 25, 2013        4WD Road driven: July 9, 2009        Copyright 4X4Explore.com - 2000-2013