Total distance: 6.7 miles
Getting there: From Breckenridge, drive south on Highway 9 (heading away from Frisco/I-70). About 2 miles from the last light in town, just past Goose Pasture Tarn, turn right onto Spruce Creek Road (there is a sign on the right that says, “The Crown"). The trailhead is located 1.2 miles from the turn-off. At the first “Y,” veer left. The road “Ts” shortly thereafter; keep left to stay on Spruce Creek Road. Drive approximately one mile on narrow, dirt road to the parking lot and trailhead. As you drive into the parking lot, the trailhead will be in the left-hand corner.
The hike: Start out on the Spruce Creek Trail. This is wooded path that leads gently upwards. Fair warning: In early July there were still a few muddy patches, but hiking shoes were made to get dirty! After a while, you’ll come to a rather large pond – a great place to take a break. Continuing on, you’ll come to a gravel road. Turn left and follow the road around a bend. You’ll see the Spruce Creek Diversion straight ahead. Look for the trail on the right. The trail continues upwards for another half mile before it splits. The trail towards Mohawk Lakes continues to the left; Mayflower Lake is just a short walk down the path to the left. This is another good rest spot. From here, the trail begins its ascent in earnest! There is some fun (and easy) rock scrambling that kids (or your own inner child) will love. Reach the old mining cabin, and turn around for a great view. Keep on keepin’ on as you ascend higher and higher, stop to check out the waterfall, and finally top out at another mining ruin. From here, it’s hard to find the exact trail, but look for cairns (piles of rocks) which act as trail markers. After this point, I ran into a few lingering patches of snow and had to gingerly cross a run-off stream, but you’re almost there! Lower Mohawk Lake is just a few hundred yards away. If you want, follow the trail around the left-hand side of the lake and in another half mile, you’ll reach Upper Mohawk Lake. It’s worth the breathlessness, I promise!