Trappers Lake, Colorado

On July 11, 2017 we left Starvation State Park at about noon and drove nearly due east. We drove through Meeker, Colorado and headed up into the Trappers Lake area on Highway 8. We eventually turned right onto Highway 8a. Just after the turn we took a dirt road to the west and found a very nice spot for a few days of camping. This was the first time we had truly boondocked rather than staying in a campground.

We arrived at our private spot about 6pm, cooked dinner, fired up a generator and watched the latest Power Ranger movie as a family. Beautiful drive and an easy to get into spot. For an exact location of the places we have camped see the Where We’ve Been page. I have made my best effort to drop the pins on this page in exactly the spots we’ve camped. While this area had several great spots, we only saw one other car during our stay and they headed down the dirt road to the trailhead. It was quiet, peaceful and beautiful.

The next day we drove up the canyon to Trappers Lake Lodge where they helped us buy two Colorado fishing licenses. It turns out in this Internet age, small stores no longer sell fishing licenses because there is no margin and you can buy them online. They did let us come behind their counter, use their computer and print our temporary licenses. The folks at the lodge were friendly, sold the basics you may need, served food, organized horseback trips, and rented boats, toys and cabins.

From the lodge we drove a short distance to the Trappers Lake Trailhead. There are no roads to the lake because it is in a designated wilderness area. We hiked a quarter of a mile to the lake through sunshine, rain and hail. Yes we experienced all that in just a quarter of a mile. We arrived at Trappers Lake which was stunning. The lake is located at high altitude, in a wilderness area and surrounded by lovely mountains.

Walking around the lake a bit led us to the dock where the lodge’s rental boats were tied up. While at the lake we tried fishing from the shore with no luck. We decided that we’d rent a canoe the following day and try again.

At about 10 am the next day we repeated our trek up the canyon to Trappers Lake Lodge, collected a couple of paddles and life jackets and headed to Trappers Lake. The three of us got in a canoe and I set my fly line out the back trolling while my wife and son fished as I paddled slowly around the entire lake in a counter clockwise direction. I ended the day having caught two fish. My wife had two on and brought one all the way in, but it was the biggest fish of the day, a 16 to 20 inch Colorado Cutthroat. It was not only long, but it was fat and well colored. A beautiful day of fishing.

We returned the canoe at about 3pm after surviving quite a bit of rain, lightning and thunder. I’m always a bit concerned with 10 foot fly poles in a canoe out in a lake with lightning all around, but we survived yet again.

After fishing Trappers Lake we drove to a pretty little lake called Scotts Lake and gave it a try. We had no success at all. We could see lots of small fish jumping, but not even a bite for our efforts.

We returned to our trailer and cleaned up. While washing the dog under the outside shower we found a dead mouse in the wash basin. Later in our trip we found his best friend chewing on stuff inside the trailer and had to buy traps. We’ll keep a few traps on hand in the future. Evidently these little guys like trailer camping as much as we do.

We spent some time in the evening contemplating our next move. We decided to leave this area in the morning and head southeast towards the Pike’s Peak area. We didn’t have any connectivity in this area so we decided to go in that general direction and fine tune our decisions while driving with connectivity and the availability of Google Maps.

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