Just west of downtown Breckenridge, Colorado, the Sawmill Reservoir is a 10-acre lake resting at 9,938 feet in elevation. The reservoir is located in Summit County and is surrounded by White River National Forest land. It is open to the public year-round and best accessed near the Breckenridge Ski Resort Snowflake lift.
Hiking to the Sawmill Reservoir is extremely popular in peak tourist seasons, as it is very easy to access close to the center of town. The area is extremely scenic, offering mountain views, shady pine trees, and seasonal wildflowers.
Hiking: The most popular route used to view the Sawmill Reservoir is the 1.3-mile loop trail around the water. The path is well-maintained and suited for both beginners and families. There are several benches to rest along the trail, which takes approximately 45 minutes to an hour to complete.
Boating: Non-motorized boats are permitted on the Sawmill Reservoir. The lake is popular for standup paddleboards, canoes, and kayaks. Rentals and classes may be available at the Breckenridge Outdoor Education Center, which overlooks the reservoir.
Fishing: Visitors 16 and older may fish in the Sawmill Reservoir with a valid Colorado fishing license. The lake’s clear waters are great for catching rainbow, brown, and other trout species. Wading, boat fishing, and shore fishing are permitted.
Wildlife: Sawmill Reservoir is a popular location for moose sightings, among many other small wildlife species such as deer, squirrels, and foxes. Visitors should be prepared for a wildlife encounter and keep a safe distance from the animals.
The Sawmill Reservoir is also known as the Old Town Reservoir. To reach the water, visitors are invited to hike from the Snowflake Trailhead, located on 4 O’clock Road. The unchallenging terrain features a walk along a stream and around the perimeter of the lake, with connections to adjacent trails.
Trailhead Address: Snowflake Lift, Breckenridge, CO 80424