County Road 386 along US 24 is the access to the Frenchman Creek TH. The turnoff for this road is either 7.8 miles north of Buena Vista measured from the light at the main intersection in town, or 27.1 miles south on US 24 from the main downtown area of Leadville. Coordinates for the intersection are: N 38° 56' 15.33" W 106° 11' 16.35 at an elevation of 8,385 ft. On our last visit in 2004, CR386 was clearly marked as was getting to the lower and upper trailheads. Just after turning off from US 24, a road heads off to the right. Go straight here. Next, CR386 will make a sharp turn to the south (left). Right after that is another intersection where you must turn right or you'll end up in private property. From the highway, follow CR386 for a total of 1.5 miles to the trailhead parking for 2WD vehicles. There's not much room here. If you have 4WD with good clearance, bear left at the intersection here to remain on the Frenchman Creek access road. The right fork is CR387. Continue on CR386 for an additional 1.6 miles to the upper trailhead. In years past, this road was rumored to be hideously bad, however, we did not find it to be that much of a challenge in our Toyota T-100 in 2004. The single-track road weaves through dense, lodgepole forest. We encountered only one short, moderately rocky, difficult stretch. The remainder of the road was narrow but never problematic.


We were able to camp at the upper trailhead, though there is not room for a number of campers. It may also be possible to camp or at least, car-camp at the lower TH unless posted for No Camping. Other than that, there are National Forest campgrounds in the Twin Lakes area off US 24 and a few private campgrounds scattered at various places along US 24.

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