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  1. #1
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    pikes peak trails?

    anybody familiar with any bike legal trails that go around or to the top of pikes peak. thanks for any help.

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    To the top, Barr trail. You will hike-a-bike up the last 3 miles (at least) though.

    No complate trail around it (yet). You can ride at the North Slope Recreation area accessed off the Pikes Peak Toll road. Not much there, but you could connect those trails to the road to the Crags Campground. From the Crags Campground there is an excellent 8-9 mile ride over to Horsetheif Park. There is a trail from Horsetheif up to the Pancake Rocks that takes you down to HWY 67 several miles North of Cripple Creek.Or just ride down from Horsetheif to HWY 67.

    If you then road HWY67/Lazy S Ranch Road over to Gold Camp you could connect with the Jones Park Bear Creek system down to the Palmer Trail/Section 16 trails. Take Section 16 to Entman (sp?) trail back to Manitou Springs. This is part of the in progress Ring the Peak system.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by dirtdonk
    anybody familiar with any bike legal trails that go around or to the top of pikes peak. thanks for any help.
    There is the "Ring the Peak" trail system that goes around the mountain and is 66 miles long. I don't know anyone who had ridden the whole thing. I know there are signs on some of the trails I ride that note that the trail is part of the ring, but I don't know if it is listed on any guide books yet as the ring is fairly new.

    There is also Barr Trail that is bike legal and goes from Manitou Springs to the top of the Peak. I've ridden up as far as timberline (11ish thousand feet) which was quite a gruleing ride. After timberline, the trail becomes extremely rocky and is 50%+ hike-a-bike. I have also shuttled down the trail and would not recommend it. The top part is too technical to ride on several sections and below timberline is a smooth, unsatisfying downhill. Adding insult to injury, there is a lot of hiker traffic on the weekends so you really need to keep your speed in check. It's worth the ride down if you've earned it by climbing up, but not worth it just for the downhill itself...

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    Quote Originally Posted by teleken
    To the top, Barr trail. You will hike-a-bike up the last 3 miles (at least) though.

    No complate trail around it (yet). You can ride at the North Slope Recreation area accessed off the Pikes Peak Toll road. Not much there, but you could connect those trails to the road to the Crags Campground. From the Crags Campground there is an excellent 8-9 mile ride over to Horsetheif Park. There is a trail from Horsetheif up to the Pancake Rocks that takes you down to HWY 67 several miles North of Cripple Creek.Or just ride down from Horsetheif to HWY 67.

    If you then road HWY67/Lazy S Ranch Road over to Gold Camp you could connect with the Jones Park Bear Creek system down to the Palmer Trail/Section 16 trails. Take Section 16 to Entman (sp?) trail back to Manitou Springs. This is part of the in progress Ring the Peak system.
    Interesting... I didn't realize that the ring wasn't complete yet. Good info to know (as if I would ever have the legs/lungs to ride a 66 mile ring around Pikes Peak).

  5. #5
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    Ring The Peak Trail Ride

    Quote Originally Posted by dirtdonk
    anybody familiar with any bike legal trails that go around or to the top of pikes peak. thanks for any help.
    Just found this 1 week old thread, I have been mulling over doing the Ring the Peak Trail (RTP) for a few days now, so I did a search and found your post.

    Has any one ridden this trail? Yes it has been done (I am sure many have done it)
    Last Sat. I was buying a Pikes Peak Trail map at my local shop and asked the owner if he had ever done RTP. He said no but knew someone who had who just happened to be in the shop. We chatted for a few minutes….can’t remember his name, Gary, Greg?? Anyway he said he and 3 others had done the entire RTP a few years ago when the concept was first laid out on a map. He said 6 guys started, 4 finished, one ran out of time, one ran out of gas. He said it took about 12 + hours for the 4 very fit riders to get it done. They did it counter clock wise.

    Here is the web site that has the basic trail map with trail head to trail head info, including which sections are not 100% signed etc., http://www.trailsandopenspaces.org/ RTP map is in the trail description section.

    I have marked up my map with info from the web site and am about ready to go, maybe on Sunday the 11th if schedule allows or the following weekend? I plan to ride CCW and to work around any unfinished/unmarked sections as best as I can. I am probably going to start at Intermann TH on Gold Camp Rd (or maybe the new open space off of Hwy 24 and ride up to Intermann)

    I plan to do the ride unsupported at my own pace. I am a modest climber at best and plan/hope to take about 13 to 15 hrs. If you (or anyone else) are still looking for a moderate epic ride and would like share info and to start out at the same time post a reply

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by trail717
    Just found this 1 week old thread, I have been mulling over doing the Ring the Peak Trail (RTP) for a few days now, so I did a search and found your post.

    Has any one ridden this trail? Yes it has been done (I am sure many have done it)
    Last Sat. I was buying a Pikes Peak Trail map at my local shop and asked the owner if he had ever done RTP. He said no but knew someone who had who just happened to be in the shop. We chatted for a few minutes….can’t remember his name, Gary, Greg?? Anyway he said he and 3 others had done the entire RTP a few years ago when the concept was first laid out on a map. He said 6 guys started, 4 finished, one ran out of time, one ran out of gas. He said it took about 12 + hours for the 4 very fit riders to get it done. They did it counter clock wise.

    Here is the web site that has the basic trail map with trail head to trail head info, including which sections are not 100% signed etc., http://www.trailsandopenspaces.org/ RTP map is in the trail description section.

    I have marked up my map with info from the web site and am about ready to go, maybe on Sunday the 11th if schedule allows or the following weekend? I plan to ride CCW and to work around any unfinished/unmarked sections as best as I can. I am probably going to start at Intermann TH on Gold Camp Rd (or maybe the new open space off of Hwy 24 and ride up to Intermann)

    I plan to do the ride unsupported at my own pace. I am a modest climber at best and plan/hope to take about 13 to 15 hrs. If you (or anyone else) are still looking for a moderate epic ride and would like share info and to start out at the same time post a reply
    I would recommend just starting at the Barr trailhead over climbing to the Intemann. If you climb to the intemann, then you are adding unnecessary climbing. With a ride of this length, you have plenty of climbing w/o adding more that you do not have to do.

    Off of Gold Camp Rd., you still have to climb section 16 to reach the intemann.

    If for some reason your plans are delayed, I would be up for it on June 25th (Sunday)

    If you do it this Sunday, post the details of your ride. Enjoy!!!

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    Thanks for posting the details. I have to reconsider my previous post. From the map/description it is possible to do, but some roads have to be ridden. It sounds like they have worked out the private property issues. In the past the owner of the drainage below the Pancake Rocks (South of Horsetheif Park) was not too happy about hikers on his land.

    My hat is off to anyone who makes this trip, there are some big hills to climb/push.

  8. #8
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    Ring the Peak Ride (or debacle?)

    Summary:
    Started from Upper Gold Camp Rd Parking lot at Sunday morning, June 11th at 5:40am
    Direction Traveled: CCW
    Arrived back at parking lot at 11:59 pm
    Total elapsed time: 19.32 hrs
    Average Speed: 3.82 mph
    Recorded “ride” Time: 12.24 hrs
    Recorded “ride” Speed: 5.6 mph
    Recorded Trip Distance: 69.22 miles
    Aprox. Hike a Bike Distance: 4.75 miles
    Total round trip Distance: 73.97 miles
    Altitude Gained 7608 ft (seems like a lot more)


    Book Version:
    Section by Section with comments (per the trail segments listed at http://fotp.com/ringthepeak/index.htm )

    Intermann (Bear Creek to Manitou Springs)
    Rode trail 16 to beginning of Intermann trail. Fun Single track to Crystal Park Rd, ride down rd through Manitou to High School, pick up trail at HS, sort of a cool urban single track from here to end of trail at Ruxton Creek.

    Ute Pass (Ruxton to Chipita Park/Mt Ester TH)
    Let the fun begin, I could not find the Ute Pass TH, rode up and down Ruxton, then up some side roads, finally met a nice local out for a morning walk who pointed out a local side trail that let me get up to the Ute trail, wasted a good 40 min and had to do a tough hike a bike section. Ute trail follows a water line, has some flat and roller section, pleasant little section of trail, dead ends at Hwy 24 across from Waldo Canyon TH. Note the gate says no trespassing from the Hwy side but the trail was not signed anywhere to indicate you can not ride up to the gate from the back side; maybe I missed some closure notice at the Ruxton Creek TH. Anyway I slipped under the gate, on to Hwy 24 and on up to Mt Ester TH.

    Mt Ester (Chipita Park to N Catamount Res.)
    After a steep ride up Picabo Rd (my % gradient showed 25% in spots) I reached the Mt Ester TH. You have to hike a bike up to the ridge line, took about 40 min of steady hiking. More fun, It was during this hike section that I really began to think about coming up with a better way to carry my new FS bike. The rear shock under the top tube is in the way for a traditional cyclo cross carry. I can slip the nose of the seat over my shoulder for most walking sections including all types of down hill walking. However on steep up hill sections like Mt Ester this method does not get the front wheel up high enough. It was awkward and energy intensive hiking my way up. This problem would come back to haunt me big time later in my ride. The trail from the top of the hike a bike section to Catamount is mostly classic single track and finishes with some gravel road.

    Raspberry ( N Catamount Res. to Fourmile Creek/Raspberry)
    The trail follows the gravel service road (Not content with the amount of fun and climbing so far I somehow missed a sign and unnecessarily dropped down to the lake only to have to climb right back up, more lost time and energy) to a fun single track section that eventually drops back down to the top end of the lake and past some neat beaver ponds and on up a mountain valley. At the top of the valley there is a steep climb (I can normally/barely ride this climb as part of a local group ride but was pushing the whole climb today) After you top out the steep climb there is a fun decent down to Fourmile creek, including some new single track!

    Putney (Raspberry portal to Putney Gulch)
    The Ring the Peak signs stop at the end of the prior section. I rode up the road, past Crags Campground, till the road ends. Straight ahead in the most logical direction to Putney Gulch there was a torn down fence and a well defined trail that appears to cross private land. My map shows an other trail that loops to the right and appears to stay on public land. I go right, follow a well defined trail up to a saddle and then follow an old, less well defined trail, (someone has made small rock cairns that allow you to follow the old trail despite the heavy deadfall) down to Putney Gulch. I decided to filter some cold clear stream water before continuing. How I proceed to blow it big time: Up till now everything was going mostly to plan, I was a little behind my preset time to finish in 13-15 hrs but not far off. I was tired but not beat. My map shows trail 704 terminating at Putney Gulch and going to Horsetheif Park. I planed to reach Horsetheif Park and drop down to Hwy 67 to avoid the apparent dead end at pancake rocks. After filtering I scouted a few hundred yards on foot up the trail directly across the creek and decided it was not the right trail (it probably was). So I started down Putney looking for a trail up the very steep far side. After a while I realized I was off track but rather than go back to the known trail at the creek crossing I decided to hike straight up the far side thinking I would intersect trail 704. This basically ended my ‘tough but achievable ride’ and began my survival ride as the effort to push/carry my bike up to the top totally blew any reserves I had been saving. To make matters worse I did not intersect 704 at the top but to my dismay wound up on private land. To my left was a steep rd up to where trail 704 might be, to my right was downhill to Hwy 67. I chose down.

    Off the RTP Trail
    After riding down to Hwy 67 I slowly start towards Gillett/Hwy 81. Even on this easy pavement I am now stopping every few minutes to rest, feeling worse at every stop, no phone service or I would probably bail out. When I reach the intersection of 67 and 81 I see a KOA, I consider using their phone to call for help but decide to rest a second and think it over. I sit in the shade of some type of utility box and think long and hard about quitting. According to my map I can pick up the RTP trail by taking Gold Camp Rd to 376, go up 376 and pick up the trail at the 376/379 intersection (web site shows 379 as 376?). I know much of the route from where I sit is down hill, I also know if I continue on at this point I will finish well after dark. I have lights in my pack, a good ‘walking’ LED light and a medium helmet light, enough to get the job done. I decide to continue and immediately I get sick, puke my guts out and feel a lot better. I suspect the good feeling won’t last but for the moment I feel like riding again. Off I go, your legs always feel so strong going down hill.

    Almagre (376/9 to Frosty Park)
    It took way to long, but I finally reach the RTP trail again, I am now very tired and no longer able to eat, still drinking but also still getting sick and puking. Its good to see the RTP signs again, however this section of trail starts with nasty hike a bike section straight up a tore up/rocky jeep road. At the top, I think this is highest point on the trail, I take another rest and get my lights out. The trail from here to Frosty Park is fun jeep road, mostly down or flat, however I am now so beat I have to walk a lot of the mild uphill sections. Just before I reach Frosty Park I have to turn on my helmet light. Somewhere along here I come around a corner and can see the lights of Colorado Spring, stop to call my wife, let her know every thing is ok but still have a ways to go.

    Jones Park (Frosty Park to Bear Creek)
    The trail is now single track and soon gets to technical for me to ride. I suspect the ‘long travel’ crowd like this trail (668/Pipeline) alot. However having never been on this trail, with a modest light, tired body, being by myself, and full dark no way am I going to ride it. I do ride a few sections but walk most of it, all down hill so the walking is easy on my tired body. Once I reach the intersection of Pipeline and Seven Bridges trails I have an other decision to make, stay on the RTP trail or walk down Seven Bridges to Gold Camp Rd. I sit at the intersection and debate the best route. I have never ridden bear creek either and think if it is half as technical as 668 it will take longer than my lights will last.

    Off the RTP Trail again
    I decide to walk down Seven Bridges using my walking light, when I finally come out at Gold Camp Rd I switch on the helmet light, ride past some startled teenagers, fly through the tunnels as fast as I can, this is kind of cool with lights, soon hit the pavement and coast on back to my truck. Quite a ride for this old man. All I can think at this point is where’s the nearest 24hr store and some cold chocolate milk.
    Last edited by trail717; 06-13-2006 at 12:36 AM.

  9. #9
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    Wow! Sounds like a debacle to me, but it made for a good read! Congratulations on your accomplishment!

  10. #10
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    Nice ride report, sounds like a good long day in the saddle.
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  11. #11
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    Whoa! That's hardcore. It's been a long, long, time since I've been on a death ride like that. Good on you for finishing when you could of bailed!
    A man must have enemies and places he is not welcome. In the end we are not only defined by our friends but those against us.

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    Damn! I'll say it again- my hat is off to you. That is an excellent write up of a hellish day. That is why my earlier post stated the "trail" does not really exist (in a practical manner). Too many sections are still not clear enough to navigate.

    You are one tough Hombre, I could not imagine trying that.

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    Holy crap, thats crazy....

  14. #14
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    Dude, that was an awesome write-up; I especially like the puking parts. Can you do us all a favor and go ride kokopelli or white rim in a day and give a detailed write-up?

  15. #15
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    Kokopelli Trail Race

    Quote Originally Posted by Fat Elvis
    Dude, that was an awesome write-up; I especially like the puking parts. Can you do us all a favor and go ride kokopelli or white rim in a day and give a detailed write-up?
    Actually I tried the KTR in May, I wimped out way to soon and bailed at 87 miles. I plan to re-do the KT in Sept., the White Rim is also on the list when the temps drop back down later in the yr! (you can look up my KTR (trail717 member) posts if you really want to, however there are a lot better/great KTR posts by others in the endurance racing section)

    Riding the RTP trail was sort of a training ride to teach myself to not quit so easily and to learn more about nutrition on long endurance rides. Maybe someday I will figure it out. I am thinking about a re-do of the RTP trail for more fun training and to see if I can do it with out getting side-tracked off the trail at Putney Gulch and with out getting quite so sick. However my wife told me in no uncertain terms I have to get someone to go with me next time.

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