The Medicine Bow Rail Trail is open all year.
It is open to hiking, snowshoeing, cross country skiing, mountain biking, and horseback riding. Dogs are welcome.
It is closed to motorized vehicles but don’t be surprised if you see them anyway.
There is a fee of $5 per vehicle for each day at every trailhead except the Dry Park Trailhead which is undeveloped. 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.
There are 2 easy trails totaling 23.6 miles.
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The Medicine Bow Rail Trail is 22 miles long starting from the Dry Park Trailhead a few miles south of Albany and ending at the Pelton Creek Trailhead along the Wyoming Colorado Border.
The trail follows the graded railroad bed of the old Hahns Peak and Pacific Railroad through the Medicine Bow National Forest.
It is common to see wildlife along the trail and Lake Owen is a popular fishing spot.
The six trailheads allow you to explore any section without traveling the entire length.
You will see a lot of evidence of the old railroad in the railroad ties along the trail but none of the historic structures remain.
If you are looking for a guide to take with you on the Medicine Bow Rail Trail:
- You can view, download, and print a PDF version of our free trail guide.
- You can find these trails in our Snowy Range and Pole Mountain Trail Deck sold through our partner, Laramie’s Basecamp.
- The Medicine Bow-Routt National Forest publishes the Medicine Bow National Forest Map – Waterproof.
- These trails are also part of the Hiking Wyoming’s Medicine Bow National Forest – Third Edition book by Marc Smith.
The trail ranges in elevation from 8,760 at the North and South end to 9,040 feet near the Woods Creek Trailhead.
The Medicine Bow Rail Trail can be reached from several trailheads (See the trail map for more detail). For the northern trailheads, take Wyoming Highway 130 from Laramie, turn on Wyoming Highway 11 and follow it to Albany. After Albany follow Forest Road 500, turn left on Forest Road 513 until you reach Forest Road 517 which will take you to the three trailheads. For the southern trailheads travel from Laramie on Wyoming Highway 230. The Woods Creek trailhead will be just past Chimney Park, Vienna will be on Forest Road 549, and Pelton Creek will be on Forest Road 898.
Select the Google Map tab next to the Just Trails Map tab at the top of the page to see a directions map.
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