CT - Indian Creek (Waterton Canyon Alt.)

Consensus:    (details)
  4.0 from 5 votes
blueBlack  Intermediate/Difficult from 3 votes
Rank: #5 in the Front Range area
#165 in CO, #1,214 Overall
Views: 6,595. Last 30 days: 316
Condition Details | Update
Featured Ride in the area near Roxborough Park,
“The perfect downhill alternative to the traditional Waterton Canyon dirt road climb.”
Chuck McQuade on Jun 13, 2013
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19.030.6 milesKilometers 2,810’857 m Ascent 7,861’2,396 m High 7% Avg Grade (4°)
85% Singletrack -4,174’-1,272 m Descent 6,103’1,860 m Low 33% Max Grade (18°)
3:32 average time for 16.0 miles. Details

This ride uses the Indian Creek Trailhead and the east leg of the Indian Creek Loop ride as a much better alternative to the Waterton Canyon part (dirt road) of Segment 1 of The Colorado Trail (COT).

The east leg covers 10 fast mostly downhill miles with only a small section of dirt road before joining the Colorado Trail at Lenny's Rest. By using this alternative, you'll have a huge smile on your face knowing that you just skipped 7 miles of dirt road up Waterton Canyon. The remaining 10 miles along the COT includes a few tough climbs, a couple of advanced rock gardens, however it's well worth the effort for the final 2 miles of classic downhill!
Need To Know
**This route is described as a one way ride using a two car shuttle** - leave a car at the Indian Creek Trailhead, then a second on the Platte River Rd. There is a large dirt parking lot at the terminus of COT segment 1 and the start of segment 2. There is a large Iron bridge at the parking lot used for bikers and hikers to cross the South Platte. The car shuttle is 10 miles long, taking about 20 minutes each way. From the Indian Creek Trailhead head west on HW 67 til a fork in the road, take a right at the fork onto W Pine Creek Road (dirt). After a few miles you'll take a right onto Platte River Road. Continue north until you see a large dirt parking lot, pit toilet and the iron bridge.

Parking is available at the Indian Creek Trailhead, though it gets full most every weekend. There is overflow parking at Rampart "Upper" Lot 1/4 mile from Indian Creek Trailhead.

**Fee for parking at the Indian Creek Trialhead is $4.00 per day per vehicle**
The singletrack starts at the NW corner of the Indian Creek Trailhead parking lot, just behind the pit toilet. Look for and follow trail signs reading trail #800 (east leg). Start with a short 1-mile climb to an intersection of a dirt road and the Ringtail Trail.

Congratulations you have just reached the loop's high point. The next 8 miles are all downhill from here. Continue north along the dirt road marked with the #800 trail sign for 3 fast miles. Once you reach a large power line tower, look for the singletrack to start back up to the east. An awesome mile long section of downhill now awaits.

Next you'll reach a crossing trail - turn left or north to continue along trail #800. The next section is made up of a wide singletrack with countless what appears to be man-made jumps. FUN. After reaching a meadow, the trail bends to the west with some more amazing downhill and several big rock and root drops. Continue along the trail #800 passing a trail that turns to the right which heads to the dirt road of Waterton Canyon.

After a few creek crossings and the loop's first steep and challenging climb, you'll reach a "Y" junction. Continue north leaving the Indian Creek Loop. After a short distance you'll meet up with segment 1 of the COT at Lenny's Rest bench. From here, continue west along the COT crossing Bear Creek and the ride's low point.

Now climb for the next 3 miles and 1500 feet of vertical, crossing a few more small creeks while winding your way up along dense forest and wonderful singletrack. This section includes a few rock gardens, one which most riders will likely walk. After the long grind, catch your breath and enjoy a 3.5 miles 1500 foot screaming, smooth downhill, ending at the south fork of the South Platte River.

See Segment 2 --- Colorado Trail: South Platte Canyon to Little Scraggy TH.
View in 3D
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5.0 (1)
The fast, flowy, and fun singletrack course for Ridgeline Rampage, Rocky Moun...
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Meyer Ranch is a great route for a summer or fall loop through the trees.
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4.9 (7)
A life-changing 485 mile ride on the Colorado Trail from Denver to Durango.
near Roxborough Park, CO

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PHOTOS of CT - Indian Creek (Waterton Canyon Alt.)
  4.5 from 4 votes
Rocky Mountain Columbine, the state wildflower of Colorado, lines the tr... (Roxborough Park, CO)
  4.3 from 3 votes
Beautiful meadow. (Roxborough Park, CO)
  3.7 from 3 votes
Riding through a cute valley on the Colorado Trail. (Roxborough Park, CO)
  3.3 from 3 votes
Initial climb out of parking lot. (Roxborough Park, CO)
  3.0 from 4 votes
Take the right trail just past the electrical tower. (Roxborough Park, CO)
  3.0 from 3 votes
Nice section of singletrack. (Roxborough Park, CO)
  2.6 from 5 votes
Lunch spot: and example of the great views and dense forest that makes t... (Roxborough Park, CO)
  2.7 from 3 votes
Pointing the way (Roxborough Park, CO)
  2.7 from 3 votes
At top of first climb. (Roxborough Park, CO)
  2.7 from 3 votes
Nice shady doubletrack for ~3 miles. (Roxborough Park, CO)
  2.7 from 3 votes
Doubletrack with nice shade in the am. 7/3/15 (Roxborough Park, CO)
  2.7 from 3 votes
Electrical lines landmark. (Roxborough Park, CO)
  2.7 from 3 votes
Trail intersection. make the "wrong turn" and you'll make this trip MUC... (Roxborough Park, CO)
  2.7 from 3 votes
More doubletrack through the foliage (Roxborough Park, CO)
  2.7 from 3 votes
Stay to the right (Roxborough Park, CO)
  2.7 from 3 votes
A section of shady singletrack (Roxborough Park, CO)
  2.7 from 3 votes
Heading into a forested area (Roxborough Park, CO)
  2.7 from 3 votes
Follow the pointers for the Indian Creek Loop counterclockwise. You can ... (Roxborough Park, CO)
  2.7 from 3 votes
Bushwhacking on the Colorado Trail on my SC Bronson. (Roxborough Park, CO)
  2.7 from 3 votes
Keep on rolling! (Roxborough Park, CO)
  2.3 from 3 votes
Wide and smooth here (Roxborough Park, CO)
  2.3 from 3 votes
Doubletrack through here (Roxborough Park, CO)
  2.0 from 4 votes
Indian Creek Trail #800 - follow these signs for the first 10 miles of t... (Roxborough Park, CO)
  1.8 from 4 votes
South Platte Trailhead (Pine, CO)