Several years ago, when my buddy Cathy and I were training for a trail running event, we would run on a trail system at Crosier Mountain. We would access the trail from one of the three trail heads off of Larimer County's Devil's Gulch Road. A couple of weeks ago when a fellow in the COSA conference said he had done a mountain bike ride on Crosier Mountain, accessing the trail from Estes, I was curious about the Estes trail entry.
On Saturday, three of us decided to explore Croiser Mountain to see if we could find the Estes Park entrance. As I'm writing this blog post, I realize I must get better at taking more photos. Experimenting with a new camera aside, I have no photos of the Glen Haven access point, which is directly behind the stables. I have no photos of the single-track sections of trail.
As my mountain bike skills go, I consider this an advanced trail. There are several steep and rocky sections, with generous portions of roots throughout many sections of the trail. I was off the bike a lot on the way out, though I could descend more of the trail than I could ascend. Dennis Anderson and Todd Singiser rode a lot more of the trail than I did and it is fun to see stronger riders ride, or attempt to ride, the tough sections.
We did ride to the Estes Park access point. There is a system of gates via the H-G Ranch. Though it is a private ranch, riders and hikers can access the trail through the ranch, located just off of Dry Gulch Road. The photo below is overlooking the ranch. Estes Park sits in the valley behind the two small hills in the center of the photo below.
I may have to go up to the ranch again to get a photo sequence or video of the pulley system that opens the main gate to the ranch. You can pull on a handle to open and close the gate without leaving your car and it's all mechanical.
Even though it is a tough trail, it's fun go somewhere new. For future rides, I vow to take more photos.