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Yankee Boy Basin Trailhead
Added by BillMiddlebrook

Location:  San Juan Mountains
14ers Served:  Mt. Sneffels
Road Type:  Easy 4WD, good clearance recommended. 3   (0=Paved, 6=Very Difficult 4WD)
Easy 4WD to the restrooms. 4WD to the upper TH.
Directions:  Take US 550 to Ouray. 1/4 mile south of town, turn west onto Country Road (CR) 361 (2WD, Dirt) toward Yankee Boy Basin. Start measuring mileage from the start of this road. Your mileage may vary slightly, but the following list describes the turns and milestones:
- At 3 miles: The road has some shelf sections with exposure to the left.
- 4.7 miles: Stay right on CR 26.
- 5.3 miles: The road is cut into the cliffs like a "C" so there is rock hanging over the road.
- 6.1 miles: Stay right on CR 26 at the junction for Imogene Pass.
- 6.3 miles: Pass through the empty Sneffels townsite.
- 6.8 miles: Stay right and pass a Yankee Boy Basin info sign.
- 6.9 miles: Stay right onto the "853 1B" road. The remaining drive is 4WD and 2WD cars should park below this junction.
- 7.7 miles: Reach the lower "trailhead" where many people park. There is a restroom here.
Driving beyond this point requires 4WD
- 100 yards after the restroom parking area, pass a large rock and stay right at a junction.
- 8.2 miles: Stay right.
- 8.5 miles: The road gets much worse after this point and there’s a sign that recommends only 4WD, high-clearance, short-wheelbase.
- 4WD vehicles (short wheelbase, good clearance, 4WD low) can continue another mile to the signed, upper trailhead at 12,460’.
Winter Access:  Usually closed low on the road.
14er Trailheads on Google Maps
Date Status Information Posted By  Photos  Comments Likes Dislikes    
2009-05-12 2wd cars can make it 6.8 miles up the road to the Yankee Boy Basin sign, beyond that high clearance and 4wd (preferably low gear) are necessary. The road is snowed in at the outhouse 7.7 miles up the road. When we arrived on 5/6/09, the road was in far better shape than when we left on 5/11/09 because the road was rapidly eroding due to snowmelt. We were driving a stock Tacoma and occasionally scraped lightly when crossing the waterbars. realhillboarding         
2008-10-17 Two large trees have fallen and completely block the road about 1/2 mile below the restroom. Each tree is 18-24 inches in diameter so moving them is not an option. Another large tree is also down and across the road less than 1/2 mile above the restroom. thetoddman         
2008-09-07 I Drove my ‘07 Toyota Yaris up to the 2wd Restroom TH on 3 SEP 08. Everyone kept asking if it was a rental. I had to stop and stack rocks at one point, but I made it with zero frame bumps, but did smack a wheel rim once, (it‘s fine). No other cars there, but a bunch of jeeps, and SUV and the 4x4 tours joined me the next day. It‘s a hell of a road for a 2wd car. It was dry, otherwise I‘d been walking. MUni Rider         
2008-07-24 On Tuesday 7/22 a couple of jeeps had plowed through (and beat the hell out of) the remaining snow that was blocking the road to the upper trailhead. However, on our hike out, we also watched as one Jeep got stuck. This should speed the melting and it should be fully open soon. E-dorvs         
2008-07-17 The road is clear to maybe 0.2 miles of the end, where snow blocks the way. We only had to walk a few switchbacks and maybe 100 ft of vertical. Matt         
2008-07-07 Road is closed at the parking area a little above 11,400ft as of July 4th. Snow shortly after the gate would block passage anyway. Carl         
2008-06-14 Road is plowed to the outhouse and is in pretty decent condition. Lots of snow in the basin after that. roozers42         
2008-05-26 The road is now nearly open to the outhouse. gb         
2008-05-16 The road is open to the Ruby mine at the intersection of County Rd 26 and County Rd 26a. (About 10,300) The plowing is ongoing. s_tuning         
2008-05-05 Road is closed at or around 9700 ft due to snow. It might be a while if they dont plow it. This is 4 mi below the top. Jcwhite         
2007-08-26 Road is open all the way to the high trail head. Road is in decent shape. kyle_doughty         
2007-07-14 The road is now open and clear of snow all the way to the TH. Hawkeye         
2007-05-19 I did Sneffels today (5.19.07) and the road is open to the solar outhouse, which I believe is 11,400'. A 4x4 is recommended as there is a lot of water running on the road. WillyGoat         
2006-07-19 Passable with high-clearance vehicle all the way to the top of the basin; Snow completely gone. ADKben         
2006-06-21 On 06-20-06 the road is clear slightly past the Blue Lakes TH, about one mile before the Sneffels TH. You may make it thru the one patch on snow blocking the road to the TH in the mornig, but wouldn't suggest trying to get thru after the sun has been on it. Hawkeye         
2006-05-21 Sorry, mest up, its open til 11,400 where the restroom is. Jcwhite         
2006-05-21 I busted down the last couple snowbanks a couple nights ago, and with decent clearance you can get all the way to the top of the road. Jcwhite         
2005-10-13 Road closed (temporarily?) by the Forest Service due to the recent storms. s_tuning         
2005-06-20 6-17-05: Road is clear to the outhouse just above 11,000 feet. Just beyond the outhouse, the road has raging torrents of water, and in some places, the road is totally under water. Snow begins about 1/2 mile from the outhouse, and at least one jeep made it this far to park. sisyphus         
2005-06-07 Still open to 11,200 (solar powered outhouse). High clearance is needed to get further than a few miles up CR361. doumall         
2005-05-30 Open to solar powered outhouse, ~11,200 cjw         
2005-05-29 The road to Yankee Boy is open to the Ruby mine, about one mile from the trailhead. s_tuning         
2005-05-18 Road is passable by 2WD to about 3 miles. I made it to 6.2 with my 4WD. Forest Service is plowing the last 2 miles and says that the road will be open all the way to Yankee Boy Basin by Firday, 5-20-05. s_tuning         

The outhouse at the Yankee Boy Basin. (Added by: warg on 2008-06-06)Driving down Yankee Boy Basin, just below the "road closed" sign (7/3/ (Added by: Aubrey on 2009-07-07)

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