Just Trails Map

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The Basics

jt-clearMedicine Bow Peak is open all year but it is difficult to get to from winter to mid summer.

jt-checkIt is open to hiking. Dogs are welcome.

jt-xMountain biking and horseback riding.

jt-clearThere is a fee of $5 per vehicle for each day if you park in the Sugar Loaf Recreation Area (near Lewis and Libby Lake). The Medicine Bow Routt National Forest Day Use Pass is accepted along with all Interagency Recreation Passes. There is no parking or day use fee at Mirror Lake or Lake Marie.

jt-moderateThe are 3 easy trails totaling 2.6 miles.

jt-moderateThere are 3 moderate trails totaling 7.9 miles.

jt-moderateThere are 2 difficult trails totaling 6.1 miles.

Trail Photos

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The Medicine Bow Peak is the highest peak in the Snowy Range at 12,013 feet. It is part of a rugged ridge line that towers over several alpine lakes and forest below.

There are several different trailheads that will take you to the summit. The Lewis Lake Trailhead is very scenic at 1.6 miles offers the shortest route to the summit.

The Lake Marie Trailhead offers a generally more gradual, but longer climb (3.6 miles) which is just as scenic. It will also take you past an old lookout cabin.

No matter your route you will hike through some very steep sections and very rocky sections but there is hardly a spot on the trail that doesn’t offer a stunning view.


If you are looking for a guide to take with you on the around Medicine Bow Peak:


Medicine Bow Peak Trail

The trails range in elevation from 10,480 feet at the Lake Marie Trailhead to 12,013 feet at Medicine Bow Peak.

jt-difficult Medicine Bow Peak Trail (5.2 Miles)

jt-easy Lakes Trail (1.7 Miles)

jt-easy Lake Marie Trail (0.6 Miles)

jt-difficult Dipper Lake Trail (0.9 Miles)

jt-moderate Heart Lake Trail (1.7 Miles)

jt-easy Libby Lake Trail (0.3 Miles)

jt-moderate Gap Lakes Trail (2.8 Miles)

jt-moderate Lost Lake Trail (3.4 Miles)


There are four trailheads you can use to hike Medicine Bow Peak. The shortest and most direct route is from Lewis Lake in the Sugar Loaf Recreation Area 11.2 miles West of Centennial on WY 130. If you continue on WY 130 you’ll come to the Mirror Lake Trailhead in 13.5 miles, the Lake Marie Trailhead in 14.2 miles (this trailhead is more gradual and just as scenic as starting from Lewis Lake) and the turnoff for FS RD 103 in 18 miles which can then lead you to the Dipper Lake Trailhead.

Select the Google Map tab next to the Just Trails Map tab at the top of the page to see a directions map.

You can help other people explore by leaving some comments about the Medicine Bow Peak Area below.

Lake Marie Parking Area

Lewis Lake Trailhead


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User Comments

  1. Chris |

    I cannot figure out what the distances are to Medicine Bow peak from the different trail heads. The sign at Lewis lake says 5 miles to the peak. The article here indicates 1.6 miles. One is obviously incorrect. Also, the guide that the ranger station gave us shows that the Marie Lake trail head to Medicine Bow Peak is 4.77 miles. The article here states it is 3.6 miles. Why is there so much discrepancy? Who is correct?

    • My guess is that they are all incorrect. There is going to be some estimation and rounding in every measurement. Our distances came from hiking the trail with a GPS unit. And then when we split that into parts there is even more estimation and rounding. Our measurement of the Medicine Bow Peak trail from the Lake Marie Trailhead to the summit is 3.6 miles. Then it’s another 1.6 miles from the summit down to the Lewis Lake Trailhead, again by our measure. Adding those two together gives us 5.2 miles for the total distance from the Lake Marie Trailhead to the Lewis Lake Trailhead. We can’t speak for the Forest Service and for all we know their tools and techniques are better than ours. All we can say is that our information is based on the measurements we made ourselves.

  2. We thought we’d head up to Medicine Bow Peak this morning but the road into Sugar Loaf Recreation Area is still closed. So we just parked at the gate and walked up to Lewis Lake and back. It was a good morning. We saw quite a few people doing the same thing.

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