About 36 square miles of forested land lying primarily north and east of the North Platte River is included in this Wyoming Wilderness, with a small segment in Colorado's Routt National Forest. On the Colorado side, no Wilderness covers less acreage. The North Platte River enters Routt National Forest about four miles south of the Wyoming state line and flows north through a portion of the Wilderness and North Gate Canyon, a popular white-water rafting section of water. Elevations average 7,700 feet with the wide and relatively flat Platte Ridge rising in the middle of the area between the river and Douglas Creek. Elk and deer winter here. Both the creek and the river are noted for their excellent trout fishing opportunities. The Platte River Trail gently parallels the river on the west bank after a steep descent from the Platte River Trailhead. During high water, the trail dead-ends after five miles. During low water (usually in late July and August), you can ford the river and continue on the east bank. The Douglas Creek Trail follows the creek for 9.5 miles through an open canyon with trailheads at both ends. You can hike a loop from the Pelton Creek Trailhead by exiting the Douglas Creek Trail to return via the Platte River Trail.
Leave No Trace
How to follow the seven standard Leave No Trace principles differs in different parts of the country (desert vs. Rocky Mountains). Click on any of the principles listed below to learn more about how they apply in the Platte River Wilderness.
Digital and paper maps are critical tools for wilderness visitors. Online maps can help you plan and prepare for your visit ahead of time. You can also carry digital maps with you on your GPS unit or other handheld GPS device. Having a paper map with you in the backcountry, as well as solid orienteering skills, however, ensures that you can still route-find in the event that your electronic device fails.
Motorized equipment and equipment used for mechanical transport is generally prohibited in all wilderness areas.
This includes the use of motor vehicles, motorboats, motorized equipment, bicycles, hang gliders, wagons, carts, portage wheels, and the landing of aircraft including helicopters.
Wyoming Wilderness Act of 1984 - Public law 98-550 (10/30/1984) To designate certain lands in the state of Wyoming for inclusion in the National Wilderness Preservation System, to release other forest lands for multiple use management, to withdraw designated wilderness areas in Wyoming from minerals activity, and for other purposes