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Galena Gulch to Colorado Trail - West Ridge

 39 votes

15.1 Miles 24.3 Kilometers


80%

Singletrack

2,251' 686 m

Ascent

-2,254' -687 m

Descent

11,162' 3,402 m

High

9,407' 2,867 m

Low

5%

Avg Grade (3°)

19%

Max Grade (11°)

Unknown

Update

Excellent singletrack riding with a balance of contoured flume riding, climbing and sweet descents!

Mike Ahnemann

Overview

Easily accessed from the Dredge parking lot, the Galena Ditch Trail provides a great start to this singletrack adventure and minimizes road riding to the Colorado Trail (CT). A steady climb up the CT peaks with full views of the 10 mile range and gives way to a ripping descent!
Dogs: Leashed

Description

Cross Tiger Road from the Dredge parking lot and ride up dirt Summit Gulch Road approximately one mile passing the more primitive Galena Gulch Road on the right, then a home and another drive on the right. You'll pass several confusing Private Property signs. Rest assured that you have every right to be here.

At a timber chicane on the left of the road, begin the Galena Ditch Trail. Contour along the historic flume for several miles. Crossing Rock Island Road and Rock Island Trail enroute to Georgia Pass Rd.

You ride along the top of the retaining bank (not in the ditch bottom), mostly along sharp mining rocks, and some packed dirt. Although dead level, there are steep slopes on both sides on the skinny trail, and a couple places require decent balance, so it's not really a beginner trail.

Go left and northeast on Georgia Pass Rd (South Fork Swan Road) back to Tiger Road. Turn left and descend to CR 354 after 1/2 mile. Here, you'll find yourself at an open spot along the Swan River. If you've brought a water filter, this is a great place to use it. Otherwise, it's a nice place to eat a snack and cool off. You'll want to catch your breath here, because the next 3.5 miles bring a big uphill grind with over 1000' of climbing. This section gets quite a bit of sun, and it's granny gear climbing in spots, making this a real grunt.

Turn right up CR 354 for just less than 1 mile to the Colorado Trail. Climb steadily for a good 45 minutes to an hour to "West Ridge". The climb levels off before passing a junction on the right leading down to Keystone Gulch Road ( West Ridge Loop - South Connector ). After a bit of descending and contouring climbing, there is a second junction to Keystone Gulch Road.

The next descent is beautiful riding - less technical than the first descent, and flowy enough to let it rip. It's good enough to restore your energy, which is good because you're not done yet.

Much of the rest of the trail trends downhill; however, after passing a final junction on the right with Red Trail, there is a short and sharp climb which you can see on the elevation profile below.

Keep an eye on the MTB Project mobile app for this one, because it's possible to get yourself headed in the wrong direction.

At the bottom of the descent there is a four-way intersection with the Horseshoe Gulch Trail. Take a left and head back to the Dredge Parking Lot and trailhead.

History & Background

In the early 1900's, water was diverted through Galena Ditch to be used by Stanley Revette's mines. 100 years later, it makes a pretty cool bike ride!

Contacts

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4.5 from 39 votes


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Oct 23, 2017
Brian Eifert
15.1mi
Oct 7, 2017
Matt Newman
Oct 4, 2017
Elias Lehnert
Sep 24, 2017
Paul Cormier
Sep 12, 2017
caren villaroman
Sep 9, 2017
Stephen Bock
Aug 30, 2017
Nick Val
Mild
Aug 26, 2017
Peter Jasch

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Trail Ratings

  4.5 from 39 votes

#1

in Breckenridge

#114

Overall
  4.5 from 39 votes
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62%
4 Star
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8%
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Rankings

#1

in Breckenridge

#43

in Colorado

#114

Overall
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13,254 Since Oct 1, 2013
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Brian Buccellato
Colorado Springs, Colorado
Brian Buccellato   Colorado Springs, Colorado
YES. Excellent trail. Start just barely downhill from the parking lot up a road. Ride up the road for a ways, pass some houses and enter the trail on the left. It's a mild and fun climb from here on top of a short and narrow ridge (not dangerous if you fall off). You end up back to tiger road, climb up it and take the first road on the left up. The climb gets steeper. Enter Colorado Trail on the left. Yes, the climb is a grunt, and yes it is excellent. It goes for a while. The downhill is one of the best downhill's I have ever done. Many very fast switchbacks. You'll enter an open grassy area, which is beautiful. Soon you'll come to an intersection, take the left turn. A short climb and you're almost home. There will be one more opportunity to lengthen your ride if you turn right, although I've always called it good and stayed left to go home. GREAT RIDE! Aug 7, 2014
Stephanie Ogburn
Arvada, CO
Stephanie Ogburn   Arvada, CO
Did this including the extra Middle Fork section today. The 3.5-mile, 1000-foot gain climb up the Colorado Trail from the CR 354 intersection was a bear -- it seemed to never end. I had to take quite a few breathers, and I'm in pretty good shape. It was a decently fun trail -- I wouldn't drive to Breck just to do it, but since we were in the area we had fun. I was on a hardtail 29er; if I had a full suspension I think I'd have enjoyed it more as it's pretty rocky in a lot of spots. Not huge rocks, just lots of rocks. The flume section at the beginning is really cool -- not very technical and pretty flat, but it is really narrow and you can feel like you're going to fall off the edge. Plus seeing the old mine site is neat. Aug 16, 2014

 
Since this review was written, the Galena ditch trail has been extended to the Rock Island Gulch trail and now comes out at the Good Times tours at Parkville road. By the end of 2016, the trail will extend all the way to the South Fork of the Swan road which will enable folks to make loops with the Great Flume trail using less road. Jul 7, 2016

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