Located near Centura Health in Avon right off of I-70. An innovative natural science learning campus for residents and visitors of the Eagle Valley. Free and open to the public.

318 Walking Mountains Lane, Avon, CO 81620

Located at the top of the Eagle Bahn Gondola on Vail Mountain out of Lionshead Village, Vail. All visitors must have a pass to ride the gondola. Free and open to the public with valid gondola pass.
Nestled along Gore Creek near the Betty Ford Alpine Garden and Gerald R. Ford Amphitheater in Vail Village.
601 Vail Valley Drive, Vail, CO 81657

Walking Mountains Blog

Hike Of The Week: Mackenzie Gulch Sylvan Lake

Posted by Peter Suneson on Oct 23, 2018 9:59:40 AM
Peter Suneson

McKenzie-Gulch-Brush-Creek-Road-Eagle-Colorado-HikeTrail Name: Mackenzie Gulch Sylvan Lake West Brush Creek Road

Walking Mountains' weekly hikes are hand picked by our hiking guides and environmental educators to get you out on the most beautiful trails at the most scenic time of year. Whether it's wildflower blooms or beating the crowds, Walking Mountains' team of nature nerds is out there to show you the best experience on our vast public lands and wild environments. Check back next week for another timely and beautiful, Hike of the Week.


Just under 3 miles to Powerline Road.

Subjective rating:
Moderate. Few inclines to climb roughly 1,700’ of elevation.

What to Expect:

The trailhead for McKenzie Gulch is off of West Brush Creek Road, towards Sylvan Lake State Park. Look for a turnout on the left a few miles after the fork in Brush Creek Road for parking, and the trailhead is on the right side of the road. The trail begins winding through a diverse stand of aspen trees, ranging from saplings, to patriarchs of the forest. As you pass through the wildlife fences, please remember to close them behind you as this area sees lots of grazing during the summer. 

Once you reach the top and exit through another wildlife fence you’ll find remnants of hunters’ camps along Powerline Road. These make great lunch stops or continue along the road south west to find an overlook of Sylvan Lake.

This is a favorite early, or late season hike as the Eagle area tends to stay warmer longer and lose it snow earlier! The drive to the trailhead is another great opportunity for wildlife viewing as beavers, moose, and elk all call the Brush Creek drainage home.

Stewardship Message:
Please be courteous of other trail users, remember to hike on sustainable and durable surfaces (no muddy footprints), and give wildlife their space to raise their young in our amazing local forests.

Hike with Walking Mountains:
Walking Mountains Science Center leads guided hikes year round for people of all ages and abilities. To see a schedule, visit www.walkingmountains.org or stop by one of their Eagle Valley Locations:

In Avon at the Buck Creek Campus behind the hospital
On Vail Mountain at the Nature Discovery Center
At the Vail Nature Center near the Betty Ford Alpine Gardens 





Topics: Hike Of The Week

Peter Suneson

Written by Peter Suneson

Peter Suneson is the Community Outreach Coordinator and manages the backcountry hiking and snowshoeing programs at Walking Mountains Science Center. He invites you out on the trail with him to experience the sights, sounds, and smells of our local trails (just not his boots!).