Lake County is home to the two highest peaks in Colorado, dozens of hiking and Jeep trails, thousands of acres of pristine national forest, and the highest golf course in North America. You will run out of time before you run out of fun summertime activities in Lake County. Visit the Leadville National Fish Hatchery. Take in the Boom Days Rodeo. Camp on the Continental Divide. Drive a golf ball at 10,000 feet. The choices are many—and they are all yours.
Hayden Meadows is a county-owned fishing area just eight miles south of Leadville on Highway 24. With easy access, parking, restroom facilities, and a well-stocked lake, this is an ideal location to dip your line in the water. For information about fishing the Arkansas River, Turquoise Lake, Twin Lakes, or dozens of other high-country lakes and streams, contact the Leadville Ranger District. Fishing licenses can be purchased at many local stores or online at the Colorado Department of Wildlife.
Situated at the foot of its 14,000 foot namesake, Mount Massive Golf Course includes nine of the most scenic holes of golf you will every play. Carts, a driving range, putting green, snack bar and clubhouse are available for your enjoyment. Call 719-486-2176 or visit online for information about greens fees and tee times.
For those seeking a scenic ride through the heart of Colorado mining country, take a spin on the 12-mile Mineral Belt Trail. This paved trail features gentle hills, historic information signs, and stunning vistas across the Arkansas Valley. Visit the Mineral Belt Trail online for maps, news, and information about summertime events. For information about Lake County's spectacular new singletrack network, visit the Cloud City Wheelers home page, or stop by one of our excellent local cycling and sporting goods stores.
There are dozens of trails scattered throughout Lake County. Some are mild and short. Others are strenuous and long. Conditions can change rapidly and can be unforgiving in the mountains. Warm clothing, sunscreen, ample water, food, maps, and a cell phone are indispensable supplies for your hike. Lake County has the finest Search and Rescue organization in Colorado, but we prefer to keep these men and women at their regular daytime jobs. For maps and current trail information, contact the Leadville Ranger District.
Kayaking, Rafting, Sailing and Motor Boating
The Arkansas River is one of North America’s classic whitewater rivers. While most large commercial rafting operations are located to the south of Lake County, there are many local access points. Lake kayaking, sailing and motor boating are all available on Turquoise Lake and Twin Lakes. For information, contact the Leadville Ranger District.
Lake County celebrates its rich Western heritage with a series of summertime rodeo events. The Lake County Rodeo has been cancelled for 2011, but other riding events take place throughout the summer. Make sure to catch the upcoming Balloon Shoot on July 16 and 17! Call the Recreation Department (719-486-7484) for information.
With numerous federally managed campgrounds located throughout Lake County, falling asleep to the sound of howling coyotes or washing your face in an ice-cold mountain stream can be part of your Colorado summertime adventure. For information about developed campgrounds and backcountry permits, contact the Leadville Ranger District. For privately owned campgrounds, contact the Leadville – Twin Lakes Chamber of Commerce.
Three of Colorado’s classic 4x4 passes begin in Lake County. Mosquito Pass (13,186 ft.) and Weston Pass (11,900 ft.) climb to the east over the Mosquito Range, while Hagerman Pass (11,925 ft.) follows an old railroad grade over the Continental Divide toward Ruedi Reservoir and Aspen. This is just a sampling of the great off-road experience that awaits you in Lake County. For information, contact the Leadville Ranger District.
Leadville National Fish Hatchery
Visit one of the oldest fish hatcheries in the United States, and observe the teeming tanks of fish that soon will be released into Colorado’s streams and high alpine lakes. The Hatchery also has a network of beautiful hiking trails. For information, visit the Hatchery online.