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Crescent, Colorado, United States

Walker Ranch Mountain Bike Ride

Classic ride west of Boulder, CO

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Length: 7.5 miles / 12.1 km
Family Friendly • Dog Friendly
 
Overview: This is a classic ride west of Boulder, CO. It is mostly intermediate with some advanced sections. Follow Flagstaff Road for about 7.5 miles from Boulder and you will come to the Walker Ranch Loop Trailhead. But since I am based in Denver, I will describe the directions from the Crescent Meadows Trailhead off of Gross Dam Road.

To get to the trailhead from Denver, you have to drive a lot further. Drive I-70 west for about 12 miles. Take Highway 58 West for about 5 miles until you get to the intersection with 6th Ave and Highway 93. Turn right onto Highway 93, going north for about 12 miles until you get to the intersection with Highway 72 (Coal Creek Canyon Road). Turn left onto Coal Creek Canyon Road. going west for about 7.4 miles until you get to the intersection with Crescent Park Drive on your right. Turn right onto Crescent Park Drive and go about 1 mile until the road T's into Gross Dam Road. Turn right onto Gross Dam Road and descend for about 2 miles. The trailhead will be obvious on your right, shortly after crossing some railroad tracks.


Points of Interest

Parking
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Crescent Meadows Parking Lot

Since I am based in Denver, I started this ride at the parking lot closest to Denver, the Crescent Meadows Parking lot.

If you are coming from Boulder, most people will start at the Walker Ranch Loop trailhead (POI #9)off of Flagstaff Road, about 8 miles from Boulder.
Junction
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Less vs More

You are about 1.8 miles from the start. Take the higher route (left) for less technical. Lower for more technical.
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Cliffs ahead

You are about 2.1 miles from the start. Time for the hike-a-bike section. Dismount at this sign and start hiking. Be careful for the stairs are very steep.
Landmark
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Stairway

View of how steep the stairs are. Obviously you have to hike your bike down the stairway. Be careful. A fall here could be disastrous.
Viewpoint
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Another view from the stairway

View overlooking South Boulder Creek. Feel free to cool down here.
Landmark
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Bridge over South Boulder Creek

You are about 2.3 miles from the start. Enjoy the view of South Boulder Creek before you start your next climb.
Junction
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Sign for Eldorado Canyon

Obviously, don't go into Eldorado Canyon. Hiking only trail.
Junction
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Ethel Harrold intersection

You are about 3.3 miles from the start. Turn left at this intersection and continue on the Walker Ranch Loop trail. Going straight will bring you to the Ethel Harrold Trailhead in 1/4 mile.
Parking
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Walker Ranch Loop Trailhead

You are about 4.9 miles from the start. This is the trailhead most people start at if you are coming from Boulder. If you want more mileage, you could start at the Meyer's Homestead trailhead and do the Walker Link trail, about 3/4 mile one way.
Landmark
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Another bridge over South Boulder Creek

You are about 6.4 miles from the start. Cross over this bridge and begin your final steep climb back to where you started.
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7.2 miles

Almost there. Sign says 1/4 mile to the parking lot. Total mileage for the ride is about 7.5 miles.
Parking
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Meyer's Homestead Trailhead

For the adventurous who want more miles to ride, start from here and do the Walker Ranch Link. For the even more adventurous, add on the Meyer's Homestead trail, a 2.6 mile jeep road one way.
Parking
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Ethel Harrold Picnic Area and Trailhead

This is another trailhead where you can start/finish the ride. Not as many people start/finish here.
Viewpoint
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View toward Eldorado Canyon State Park

Take a rest after the climb and enjoy the view.
Pictures in this guide taken by: MooniakRides

Walker Ranch Mountain Bike Ride Trail Map


POIs: numbers | icons View large Trail Map

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