Big Creek Cutoff

Rating: 
Round Trip Distance: 2.4 miles
Difficulty: Easy
Elevation: 8720 - 8828 feet
Cellphone: 0-2 bars
Time: 1 hr.
Trailhead: Big Creek Cutoff
Fee: none
Attractions: Forest hike, deer




The Big Creek Cutoff trail is located in the Uncompahgre National Forest near Grand Junction, Colorado. The trail begins at Forest Road #404 and goes for about 1 mile through an aspen and conifer forest where it connects to the Big Creek trail. The Big Creek Cutoff is a multi-use trail that is open to all forms of travel.


Google Maps will get you to the trailhead but what it amounts to is turning onto Highway 141 near Whitewater and driving 14.2 miles to the Divide Road turnoff. Follow the Divide Road for 6.5 miles to the northern border of the Uncompahgre National Forest and then continuing for another 9 miles to Forest Road #404 a.k.a. the Uranium Road. Follow FR #404 1.2 miles to the trailhead which will be on the righthand side of the road. The Uranium Road eventually becomes 19 5/10 Road which comes out near Gateway, Colorado.


Pull off the road and park wherever it looks good. The Big Creek Cutoff trail heads off to the right into the trees.


Very little elevation change makes this hike a very easy one. Once you set out on the right trail route finding is no problem as there are no other trails to take until you reach the Big Creek trail.


In the Uncompahgre National Forest primitive camping is available in any place that isn't posted otherwise. Many people pull their trailers up here and camp in one of the many locations along Divide Road. Others choose to go in on one of the many trails and find a more secluded site.


The Big Creek trail comes up just a smidge over 1 mile. This is the turnaround point for this post.


If you get over to a spot where you can see through the trees on the west side of the trail you can get a glimpse of Big Creek Reservoir. Another very nice hike to take is the Big Creek Scout trail which begins near the reservoir.


Deer are always moving about through the area surrounding the Big Creek Cutoff trail. This doe was trying to keep track of her fawn while we were passing by.


The Big Creek Cutoff serves mostly as a utility route to the Big Creek trail. Some ATV riders like to combine the Big Creek, Big Creek Cutoff, Rim, and the Cabin trails to make a big loop to ride. Hikers, especially the quiet ones, have good chances of seeing deer, elk and wild turkeys in the area. Families looking for an easy hike in the woods for small children will like the Big Creek Cutoff trail. If you would like to see it for yourself then all you have to do is 'Take a hike'.