Northeast of Ouray
Trails north and east of Ouray access an area of the San Juan Range dominated by Uncompahgre and Wetterhorn Peaks in the Uncompahgre Wilderness. There are also numerous trails that traverse the forested hillsides drained by Dexter, Cutler, Cow and Cimarron Creeks. Populated by herds of deer, Elk and Mountain Sheep - and the occasional bear or mountain lion – these trails are particular popular during the fall hunting seasons.
It is possible to hike into this vast area by taking the Gold Belt Trail from Ouray to its 10,000’ intersection with the Horsethief Trail. A few miles north of Ouray are the Dexter and Cutler Creek trailheads for a somewhat gentler approach to the western portions of the Uncompahgre Wilderness. A final option is to drive through Ridgway to County Road 10 and over Owl Creek Pass to the three drainages of Cimarron Creek. Many miles of remote and scenic trails are available from here.