Trailhead:  American Basin
San Juan Mountains
 Posted By:  roaringriz
 Date of Info:  09/03/2012
 Date Posted:  09/05/2012
We came over from Ouray, turned onto CR18 from Hwy 550. This route starts out with 7 miles of very rough 4WD. We have a stock Jeep Wrangler Sahara Unlimited-4D. Do Not attempt this route if you do not have 4WD experience. The road is very narrow and exposed to sheer cliffs. I would recommend taking an ATV instead. We left early in the morning and did not encounter anyone on the road, but we would have had to back up as there is no way to pass on long sections of this route. There are many tight switchbacks and big rocks to drive over, and a few blind corners. After 7 miles we turned south on CR2 to the turn off for Cinnamon Pass. This section was rough 4WD with a few points where you must go over large rocks, but its much easier than the first 7 miles on CR18. It took 2 hours to reach American Basin from Ouray. The final 0.9 mile to the trail head is easy with a 4WD vehicle.

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