Sunshine

Rating: 
One-way Distance: 1.1 miles
Difficulty: Moderate
XC Skill level:
Elevation: 8159 - 8467 feet
Cellphone: 0-1 bars
Time: 45 mins.
Trailhead: Sunlight Mountain Resort
Fee: none
Attractions: Mostly ungroomed trail




The Sunshine trail is located in the Sunlight Mountain Resort Nordic Area near Glenwood Springs, Colorado. The trail begins near the base area in Sunshine Meadow where it travels up the Fourmile Creek drainage for just over a mile before it comes to an end behind the Sunlight Cross Country Skiing cabin near the junction of the Old Four Mile, Babbish and Williams trails.


The Sunlight Mountain Resort is about 10 miles up the 4 Mile Road, Highway 117, from Glenwood Springs. After parking near the north end of the base parking lot go around the front of the Sunlight Stables to the next driveway that leads to the Sunlight Snowmobile Tours area below Sunshine Meadow. Alternatively you could follow the Old Four Mile trail for a few hundred feet where there is a spur trail that crosses the creek and comes up behind the snowmobile kwanset hut.


Continue past the snowmobile kwanset hut and head toward the left side of the meadow where a house can be seen off to the left.


At the upper end of the meadow the trail travels along the private property until it passes the garage and crosses the driveway.


From there the trail levels off quite a bit and begins traveling around the side of the hill.


After a short distance the trail comes out onto a groomed route which it begins following to the right. The route coming up the hill on the left at this point is a branch of the Sunshine Connector which runs between the Sunshine trail and the Old Four Mile trail. Anyone looking for a shorter excursion can take advantage of the Sunshine Connector to loop back to the base trailhead.


The groomed trail has a slight uphill grade as it follows a wide swath through the forest of aspens.


Shortly past another junction with the Sunshine Connector the Sunshine trail branches off of the main groomed trail on the left.


From there the trail becomes a little narrower but remains groomed until it reaches what looks like a pump house.


A few yards past the pump house the Sunshine trail becomes an ungroomed singletrack as it continues pleasantly up the drainage beside Fourmile Creek.


As the trail nears its end it crosses the creek and makes a short climb that leads it past an old outhouse where it finishes up behind the Sunlight Cross Country Ski cabin.



Continuing around to the front of the cabin the route meets up with the Old Four Mile trail. From here it is right at 1 mile to the left to get back down to the base trailhead. To the right it is only a hundred feet or so to the lower end of the Babbish trail which is also where Old Four Mile transitions into the Williams trail. It is just over a quartermile up the Williams trail to the upper trailhead on Forest Road #300. Not all the trails in the Sunlight Mountain Resort Nordic Area are marked so printing out a map to take with you can be very helpful. Guest Services also has free maps that they offer. Sunshine is a fun trail for getting out and kicking around in the snow. It gets less use than the other trails in the area that are 100% groomed. If you would like to see it for yourself then all you have to do is 'Take a hike'.