The United States Congress designated the Lost Creek Wilderness (map
) in 1980 and it now has a total of 119,790 acres
All of this wilderness is located in Colorado
and is managed by the Forest Service.
Lost Creek Wilderness is located approximately 60 miles southwest of Denver. Unlike most of Colorado's jagged Wilderness profiles, Lost Creek is a land of fascinating rounded granite domes and knobs, split boulders, rare granite arches, and tree-lined mountain parks. Its rock formations are among the most spectacular in the entire Rocky Mountains. Wilderness elevations range from 8,000 feet to 12,400 feet. Lost Creek got its name from its habit of repeatedly disappearing underground, later to reappear farther down the valley. Black bear, deer, elk, bighorn sheep, and bobcats share the region. The northern section contains most of the Platte River Mountains and the Kenosha Mountains.
In 1963, the 15,120 acre Lost Creek Scenic Area was created under the precursor of the Wilderness Act, the "U-Regulations" of 1939. In 1966, the Scenic Area was also designated a National Natural Landmark. During the first U.S. Forest Service RARE process, Lost Creek received more comments recommending its wilderness designation than any other Colorado area. In 1980 the 105,000 acre Lost Creek Wilderness was created under the Colorado Wilderness Act of 1980. Approximately 14,700 additional acres were later added to the west end of the Wilderness under the Colorado Wilderness Act of 1993.
Lost Creek is accessed by a 140 mile trail network, 102 miles of which are within the Wilderness boundary. The cross-state Colorado Trail passes through the Wilderness.