Set against the rugged backdrop of Cheyenne Canyon Park in Colorado Springs, Colorado, the Columbine Trail provides a 7-mile cycling route that promises a good deal of excitement and scenery. Classified as an intermediate-level trail, Columbine has been described as a trail with "a ton of potential" and a "great workout ride." Whether you're eager to grind up steep climbs or test your skill on gravelly descents, this trail offers a bit of everything.
From I-25, head west on US-24. Turn left onto 21st Street and continue for about 4 miles. Turn right at the light onto Cheyenne Blvd. Shortly thereafter, make another right into N. Cheyenne Canyon Park. Parking options are available near the entrance to the park. The trail starts at a gate at the rear of a small parking area on the left side of the road.
The trail largely runs parallel to the road leading into Cheyenne Canyon Park, ascending about 600-700 feet over its 7-mile length. At the top, there are options to either join Gold Camp Road or proceed to the paved road near Helen Hunt Falls. The route offers a solid opportunity to loop with another trail, namely The Chutes.
Though the Columbine Trail has its share of critics—mainly due to its loose gravel sections—its redeeming qualities like beautiful vistas, fun switchbacks, and ample opportunities for speed make it a memorable ride for most. As a connector trail, it's versatile, allowing riders to extend their adventures by linking up with other routes like The Chutes. It may not be a smooth sail all the way, but it's definitely a ride to be reckoned with.