South Valley Park in Littleton, Colorado, offers a tranquil escape with its 909-acre landscape featuring approximately 6.8 miles of natural surface trails and 1.2 miles of hard surface trails. With striking red stone Fountain/Lyon geological formations as your backdrop, the park presents a beginner-friendly trail network perfect for short spins. Here's what to expect if you're thinking of riding through this panoramic locale.
Accessibility: How to Get There
- From the Metro Area: Travel west on C-470 and exit southbound on Ken Caryl Avenue. Turn left onto South Valley Road to the park's north parking area.
- Alternate Route: From South Platte Canyon Road (S. Wadsworth and C-470), take Deer Creek Canyon Road west to the smaller, south parking area.
The Trails: A Snapshot
- Coyote Song: A 10-foot wide hard pack, great for speed.
- Cathy Johnson: Essentially a dirt road, good for non-technical rides.
- Columbine Trail: A short but pleasant singletrack.
- Grazing Elk Loop: Offers a nice flow but tends to get overgrown in the summer.
- Lyons Back/Pass Connector: A good short climb.
- Rattlesnake Gulch: Well-constructed, best for connecting to Deer Creek Canyon trails.
Who Should Ride Here?
Perfect for beginners – The park is predominantly flat, non-technical, and offers excellent scenery.
Local riders – If you live nearby, it's an accessible spot for short, frequent rides.
Families – Given the trail's lack of technical difficulty, it's ideal for introducing kids to mountain biking.
Time-pressed riders – If you're strapped for time, a round through this network will take just about an hour.
Experience Shared: What Cyclists Say
- Scenery over Difficulty: The trail offers stunning views, but don't expect a thrilling technical challenge. Most find it more suitable for adding a few extra miles to a more demanding ride from Deer Creek Canyon.
- Heat Advisory: The trail is exposed and can get uncomfortably hot during mid-summer.
- Sandy Spots: A few segments of the trail have loose sand, adding a minor challenge to climbs.
- Connection to Deer Creek: It's highly recommended to connect with Deer Creek Canyon's trail network for a more extensive and varied experience.
- Distance: 6 miles
- Level: Very Easy
- Route Type: Network
South Valley Park provides a pleasant, albeit short and easy ride. While it may not be a destination trail, its accessibility and stunning landscape make it a worthwhile local option, especially for those new to the world of mountain biking.