The Spirit of the Rockies
Hike Profiles for Rocky Mountain National Park and Surrounding Areas
Baker Pass
The trail to Baker Pass leads
to a remote area in the Never
Summer Mountains. This
area is less used by day
hikers, but is fairly popular
with backpackers,
particularly along the Parika
Lake Trail. The trail to
Baker Pass leaves the
Parika Lake Trail, heads
through alpine meadows, and
above timberline to the pass.
Distance: 5.8 miles one-way

Pass elevation: 11,253 feet

Trailhead elevation: 8,864 feet

Net elevation gain: 2,389 feet

Bowen/Baker Trailhead

Rocky Mountain National Park
and Never Summer Wilderness
Bowen Mountain from Baker Pass
Major Trail Landmarks
Junction of Bowen Gulch and Baker Gulch Trails (0.5 miles one-way from trailhead)
Junction of Parika Lake and Baker Gulch Trails (3.7 miles one-way from trailhead)
Principal Destinations Near Baker Pass
Parika Lake (5.1 miles one-way from trailhead) - via Baker Gulch and Parika Lake Trails
Backcountry Campsites Near Baker Pass
Camping in this area is regulated by the USDA Forest Service, which does not use designated campsites in
the same way as Rocky Mountain National Park. Camping information is available by calling 970-887-4100.
The Bowen/Baker Trailhead is on the west side of the Continental Divide between Grand Lake and Milner
Pass. Follow Highway 34 (Trail Ridge Road) either 6.7 miles north of the Kawuneeche Visitor Center
or 10.6 miles south of Milner Pass. The trailhead parking area is on the west side of the highway. Even
though almost all of the trail system accessed from this trailhead is National Forest land, the parking lot is in
Rocky Mountain National Park, and vehicles parked here are subject to overnight parking restrictions.

From the trailhead, hike west using the gravel road across the Kawuneeche Valley. At the west end of the valley,
the road splits; follow the marked trail toward Baker Gulch. This trail soon reaches a gate, and beyond this
point, the trail ascends Baker Gulch. Follow the trail west to the marked junction of the Parika Lake and Baker
Gulch trails. At the junction, head right (north) and continue to Baker Pass on the Continental Divide. This last
part of the trail is unmaintained and may disappear in marshy areas, but is marked with cairns near the pass.
Sample photographs of the hike to Baker Pass
Baker Pass Trail near timberline
Looking south across Baker Gulch
Bowen Mountain and Baker Gulch
Mount Cindy from Baker Pass
Baker Pass topographic map
Principal summer trail marked by solid red line; unmaintained trail or route marked by dashed red line.
Map is oriented with north to the top of the map
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All photographs are property of Mike Amfahr and are protected by copyright laws.
Topographic map is property of and copyrighted by Maps a la carte, Inc., and is used on this site with permission.