Mule Deer Trail

Consensus:    (details)
  4.1 from 7 votes
blue  Intermediate from 7 votes
Rank: #1 in the Golden Gate State Park area
#216 in CO, #2,323 Overall
Views: 2,488. Last 30 days: 232
Condition Details | Update
May 23 Yellow - Snow & mud. Still a lot of snow a...
Trail in the area near Central City,
“This trail has it all - some technical climbs and fast flowing descents.”
Justin Eldridge on Jun 21, 2014
Getting There     GPX File     Print
9.014.5 milesKilometers 1,198’365 m Ascent 9,484’2,891 m High 5% Avg Grade (3°)
Singletrack Type -1,246’-380 m Descent 8,553’2,607 m Low 21% Max Grade (12°)
You'll need a CO Parks and Wildlife pass to park a vehicle. Day passes are self-pay and cost $7 (cash-only).
3:30 average time for 10.1 miles. Details

Make sure to check out the Golden Gate State Park - Mule Deer Loop for the ride using this trail.

You can access this trail from MANY points, but if starting at the bottom, from just above Kriley Pond, take Blue Grouse 0.7 mi where you'll join Mule Deer. I recommend doing Mule Deer counter-clockwise from this point, saving the fast singletrack to later, though people prefer both directions, so it probably doesn't matter.

Climb up Mule Deer with a few challenging switchbacks and generally rocky trail. There are some nice views of the mountains looking W/SW from the top.

The trail flattens out somewhat across the Rim Meadow and Frazier Meadow. Nice easy riding through aspen and ponderosa forest.

Leaving the meadows, you'll start climbing towards Gap road. You'll pass Snowshoe Hare on the right keep going.

The trail parallels gap road on the high side and has some nice features in with a mellow descent.

Crossing Gap road to Racoon trail the fun is about to begin. It's a nice descent which opens out to singletrack in aspen meadow. Trail steepens here and becomes rocky and rooted. Open it up and enjoy.

Once at the bottom its over to quick so take the side trail up to the Reverends Ridge campground. This trail is short but a lot of fun coming back down (fast and rooted).

Once you rejoin Racoon Trail, start the climb back up to Gap Road and Mule Deer trail. You could take Panorama Point Trail for some nice views of the Indian Peaks.

If not, keep climbing up on Mule Deer trail to where it crosses Gap Road.

Now the sweet singletrack though open meadows starts (just after a short climb from Gap Road). Go as fast as you dare but note that trail is narrow.

You'll come to Ole Barn Knoll an then have a short climb back up to to complete the loop with the intersection of Blue Grouse Trail. Enjoy the last descent back to the car park.
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PHOTOS of Mule Deer Trail
  4.4 from 5 votes
A little chunk in Golden Gate Canyon SP (Coal Creek, CO)
  4.3 from 3 votes
Big meadows and aspens in September (Coal Creek, CO)
  4.0 from 2 votes
Great scenery on great trail. Love the Mule! (Coal Creek, CO)
  4.0 from 2 votes
It's a nice climb on smooth trail, to say nothing of the aspens! (Central City, CO)
  4.0 from 2 votes
View from Panorama Point (Coal Creek, CO)
  3.7 from 3 votes
Slightly below Panorama point. (Coal Creek, CO)
  3.7 from 3 votes
Pretty little bridge crossing. (Coal Creek, CO)
  3.7 from 3 votes
Rippin' through the aspens at 9,000 feet in Golden Gate Canyon State Park (Coal Creek, CO)
  3.7 from 3 votes
An early settler's cabin from the mid 1800's. He chose a nice spot. (Coal Creek, CO)
  3.7 from 3 votes
Climbing through a wide open meadow on the Mule Deer Loop (Central City, CO)
  3.7 from 3 votes
Mule Deer Trail (Coal Creek, CO)
  3.3 from 3 votes
Raccoon trail starts off nice and easy like this, but has a steep ending. (Coal Creek, CO)
  3.3 from 3 votes
Winding singletrack on the Raccoon Trail at Golden Gate State Park. (Coal Creek, CO)
  3.3 from 3 votes
Now that is singletrack! (Coal Creek, CO)
  3.0 from 2 votes
More climbing, more aspens... (Coal Creek, CO)
  2.7 from 3 votes
Rocky but fast (Central City, CO)
  2.7 from 3 votes
Start of decent on N side of Gap Road (Coal Creek, CO)
  2.7 from 3 votes
Climb up Mule Deer Trail just before intersection with Blue Grouse (Central City, CO)
  2.7 from 3 votes
Nice section following gap road (Coal Creek, CO)