Crested Butte Wildflower Guide

In Play by Kryptonite Creative

What comes with wintry storms, wet springs, and sun soaked summers? An array of flowers that cover the hills of Crested Butte like no other place. With the official title of Wildflower Capital of Colorado, it’s worth a visit to just experience this summer phenomenon. 

Update 7/16 – The best viewing is now on those trails listed as ‘Middle-Late’ on the table below

Etiquette

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  • Do not pick, cut, or walk on wildflowers or other plants.
  • Doing so is Illegal on public land
  • Stay on the trail at all times
  • Keep dogs on leash, under control, and on trail at all times
  • If you see someone doing this, please give them a friendly reminder not to do so, and ask them to pass it along the message to others
Click photos to view gallery

What is blooming and when? As the snow melts and the sun hits, you need to know where and when to hike to see the most colorful displays. Our friends at the Crested Butte Wildflower Festival help to keep you in the loop with this nifty chart.

This guide was created to help you choose the best Crested Butte wildflower trails within a number of categories: Trail, Location, Difficulty, Distance, Time, and Features. Sort the guide by clicking on the category in the table header. It will be continuously updated with additional trails and the latest information. All trail guides are also mobile friendly, so feel free to take some screenshots or print out the directions (there is rarely cell service on the trails):

TrailAreaDifficultyPeak SeasonMinutes from TownMileage from Town
Lily LakeKeblerEasyMiddle-Late157
SnodgrassSnodgrassModerateEarly-Middle155
Rec PathTownEasyEarly-Late10.5
Budd TrailSlate RiverModerateEarly-Middle51.5
Lupine TrailSlate RiverModerateEarly-Middle102
Crested Butte Mountain ResortMt. Crested ButteModerateEarly-Late10 3
Lower LoopSlate RiverEasyEarly-Middle51.5
Lake IrwinIrwinModerateMiddle-Late208
Pioneer Guest Cabins Cement CreekEasyEarly-Middle108
Brush Creek TrailBrush CreekEasyEarly-Middle103
Woods WalkSlate RiverEasyEarly-Middle10.5
Whetstone - Upper Upper LoopBrush CreekModerateEarly-Middle102.7
Caves TrailCement CreekStrenuousEarly-Middle151.7
Green Lake TrailTownStrenuousMiddle-Late11
Walrod GulchCement CreekEasyEarly-Late159
Oh Be JoyfulSlate RiverModerateMiddle-Late105
Meridian Lake Trail (Long Lake)Washington GulchModerateEarly-Late153.5
401GothicStrenuousMiddle-Late20-3015
Scarp RidgeIrwinStrenuousMiddle-Late354.6
Daisy PassSlate River4Very StrenuousMiddle-Late454.6

Looking to enjoy wildflowers close to town? We’ve got 6 hikes for you that always come with some of the best flowers around: Top 6 Easy Crested Butte Hiking Trails Close to Town

The Complete Crested Butte Hiking Guide: Click Here

Click photos to view gallery

Difficulty

Difficulty is subjective, however we incorporate a number of elements into the Crested Butte wildflower trail guide to help distinguish how strenuous each trail will be for you. This includes: total mileage, steepness, trail conditions, altitude, and elevation gain.

Weather

It’s always recommended to check the weather forecast the night before your trip. Keep in mind, much of the wildflower season here is also during the monsoon season, when afternoon thunderstorms occur like clockwork. Many trails take you above the tree line and are very exposed. Lightning is the main concern and if dark storm clouds are brewing, it’s best to head down immediately. Temperatures can fluctuate dramatically, especially with rainfall, so be prepared with proper clothing and layers. A rule of thumb is to be at your high point by noon