West Mamm Creek Trailhead
Length: 12 miles out-and-back (shorter hikes on this trail are still worthwhile)
Elevation gain: 2,700 feet (7,840 feet to 10,500 feet)
The West Mamm Creek Trail is a hiking trail that climbs into the Mamm Peaks region (also called Battlement Mesa) from the east. Only a 15 minute drive from Rifle, it begins in aspen trees and ends in the alpine highlands near 11,123-foot North Mamm Peak.
Directions:From I-70 in Rifle, take exit 90. Go south a short distance to the second roundabout. Exit the roundabout heading east on Airport Road. Go about 3.5 miles past Colorado Mountain College to West Mamm Road (CR 319). Turn right, and head south several miles, where the road makes a sharp right turn. Continue heading generally southwest up the road. The pavement ends after 7 miles, and turns into a good gravel road. Stay left at 9.5 miles. The trailhead can be found by turning right onto Forest Road 653 after 10.2 miles, located at 39.4129 N/107.7990 W. This is a more rutted road but generally passable. Drive just a quarter mile to the end of the road. This is the trailhead at an elevation 7,820’. A passenger car can easily make the trip.
The Trail:From the parking lot the trail switchbacks through aspen trees for a mile, reaching a ridge at 9,100 feet. Here it appears that several trails converge. To stay on the West Mamm Trail take the one that heads left (south) following the top of the ridge towards the mountain. The trail soon crosses a dirt road and continues into a fir and spruce forest, contouring the slope of the mountainside for a few miles. The trail reaches Beaver Creek at 9,600 feet. It follows this drainage southwest, climbing to the alpine meadows of the Mamm Peak highlands. The trail continues through the highlands at an elevation of 10,500 feet with the Mamm Peaks coming into view at about 5 miles from the trailhead. After several more miles the West Mamm Trail eventually meet the Battlement Trail, but if your goal is North Mamm Peak or just to dwell in lovely fields of alpine wildflowers, you need not go that far.