Horse Canyon  
Maps:    
USGS 7.5' Map: Elk Park, Saguache Park
Statistics:
Difficulty: Number: Miles: Altitude: Obstacles: Time:
Easy 2 FR745 7.02 10,070 to 10,600 ft. NA 1-2 hours
County: Saguache
Adopted by:      
Managed by: Rio Grande National Forest
Saguache Ranger District
46525 State Highway 114
Saguache, CO 81149
(719)655-2547
Summary: Horse Canyon road runs between Sony Pass and South Pass through Saguache Park.
Attractions: Passes
Seasonal
Closure:
Agency - Closed March 15 to May 15.
Best Time: June - Best
July - Best
August - Best
September - Best
October - Early snows may close the higher sections
Trail Heads
Accessed:
None
Camping: There are no dispersed camp sites along the Horse Canyon road.
Base Camp: This would be a good area to base camp and explore the roads around Saguache Park.
Fall Colors: Poor - Large open meadows and pine forest.
Navigation: From Gunnison, CO. head east on US-50 E/E Tomichi Ave toward N Iowa Street. Continue to follow US-50 E for 8.1 miles. Turn right onto CO-114 E and go 25.9 miles. Turn right onto County Rd 17 GG and go 5.3 miles. Turn left onto County Rd NN 14 and go 1.1 miles. Turn right onto County Rd 17FF and go 8.5 miles. At the Y take the right road off of the graded county road to start Horse Canyon.

From Saguache, CO head west on CO-114 W/Gunnison Ave toward 9th Street. Continue to follow CO-114 W for 35.7 miles. Turn left onto County Rd 17 GG and go 5.3 miles. Turn left onto County Rd NN 14 and go 1.1 miles. Turn right onto County Rd 17FF and go 8.5 miles. At the Y take the right road off of the graded county road to start Horse Canyon.
History:  
Description:
The Horse Canyon road starts just south of South Pass and the Salt House. The road is a two track that leaves the graded Saguache Park, FR787, road heading south across the large sloping Saguache Park. Keep and eye out for heards of antelope that frequent the area. The road will continue down the gradual slope of Saguache Park and come to an intersection in about a mile. The sharp turn back up hill to your left is FR787.3A, which ties back in with the Saguache Park road. Continuing down hill you will head toward the lower part of this wide valley below a pine covered ridge. This low gully along the ridge is Horse Canyon.

Open slope of Saguache Park from Horse Canyon

photo by:
Adam M

As you get down by the creek that flows along the ridge you will cross a cattle guard and then come to another intersection. The road to the left is Chimney, FR777, which goes up the cut in the ridge to the other side. Staying to the right, the road will head up Horse Canyon. The road follows along the creek below the ridge covered with pine trees, with the large sloping meadow of Saguache Park to your right. You will cross over to the south side of the small creek and climb up to run along the pine trees for a short distance. Along here you will come to another intersection. The road to the right is FR787.3D, which heads back to South Pass through the forest to the north. Staying with the left, you will come to another intersection, the right being FR745.1A, which is a spur road that climbs to the top of the Continental Divde to connect with the Van Tassel, FR597, road.

Head of Horse Canyon

photo by:
Adam M

Stay to the left again as the road turns to the south around a grove of pine trees. Just past the trees you will come to another intersection near a barricade blocking an old road to the right. The left road is FR777.1A, which heads south down the Little North Fork of Saguache Creek to connect with FR777. Continue straight ahead to stay on the Horse Canyon road. The road will cross a low saddle and then cross a faint creek. Here you will come to another intersection with a road to the left that is not a legal route. Stay to the right and head toward a grove of pine trees.

Upper part of North Fork of Saguache Creek

photo by:
Adam M

The road will turn and head west again along a long meadow. As you get close to the top of the climb you will come to another intersection. The road to the left, heading back down, is FR776.1D. Continu up to the narrow gap in the trees. At the top you will be at Sony Pass.

Sony Pass looking west

photo by:
Adam M


Sony Pass looking east

photo by:
Adam M

Continuing west of Sony Pass you will come to an intersection with the Van Tassel, FR597, road, where the Horse Canyon road ends.
Data updated - December 3, 2019     4WD Road driven - September 2, 2019     Copyright 4X4Explore.com - 2000-2020