By Ericka Kastner
Beloved by locals as one of the quickest routes to getting in a skinny ski fix, Fooses Creek Trail affords not only quick access from Salida (about a 15-minute drive by car or hitch by thumb) but also varied terrain and numerous route options, making it a trail with something for everyone in all seasons.
The trailhead approach begins about 9.5 miles west of the intersection of U.S. Hwys. 50 and 285 in Poncha Springs. Traveling west on 50, take a left turn onto C.R. 225 and drive a snowy, usually plowed road about .7 miles to the parking for Fooses.
Youngsters along for the adventure will appreciate seeing Fooses Lake at the start of the trail (elevation 8,920 feet) and likely will be curious as to whether it’s frozen enough to skate on during the colder months. It’s actually a small reservoir and the water flowing out of it to the east to a hydroelectric plant at lower elevations tends to keep the lake soft just beneath the surface all winter.