Newlin Creek is a much loved destination for hikers and rock climbers. It offers a different terrain and feel from the more high-desert hikes found at other destinations in and around Fremont County. Depending on the time of year, the creek itself is not overly impressive, but does offer some small waterfalls and cascades during rainy seasons. The real attractions, at least for me, are the rock outcroppings found along the trail. In many places the trail leads around, sometimes over, sometimes between, these beautiful rock formations. If you go all the way to the end (3.6 miles one way), you'll come to an old 1887 sawmill, complete with abandoned equipment.
Getting there can be a challenge. I strongly recommend a high-clearance vehicle. My Outback did fine, but I'm glad I had the extra clearance. To my surprise, I did see some sedans in the parking area, but I wouldn't recommend trying it. From the looks of it, the road seldom gets attention from the scrapper. All that said, Newlin is worth the effort to get there -- and you'll be rewarded with a fun and beautiful hike in the woods. Be prepared for creek crossings.
Directions: From downtown Florence, CO, turn south on Rt67 toward Westcliffe. Drive 4.2 miles, turn right on County Road 15 and drive 6.3 miles to a large parking area. On your way, the road will fork twice, keep right each time. As you enter the park, you'll have options to split off to the right and left, just keep straight on the main road.
|Sign at entrance of park|
|Large parking area at the end of County Road 15|
|Sign at trail head with map giving a good overview of the area.|