This trail is a 3.5-mile up-and-back to Pancake Rocks. While it is listed as part of Ring the Peak
, the portion after Pancake Rocks is not completed and the trail comes to a stop in an aspen grove. It is best to ride to the rock formations and ride back.
From Hwy 67, the first 0.3 miles of the trail is quite steep. On the northward side, the Horsethief Park Trail
turns off after about a mile. The trail to Horsethief Falls and to Pancake Rocks continues westward for a little bit before climbing 900 feet to about 11,000ft in a series of switchbacks.
These switchbacks are more intimidating on the map, with grades between 10-20%, but are actually not bad to ride with only a few technically challenging areas.
At mile two, the trail levels out, with a few ups and downs before ending at mile 3.5 at the Pike's granite hoodoos that are the Pancake Rock formations. At the top, spectacular views extend southward towards Cripple Creek, and further to the Sangre de Cristo mountain range.
While a trail does descend from the southeastern side of the rocks, it goes only about a half a mile before coming to a dead end in an aspen grove. Bushwhacking skills are necessary to reach the bottom at Hwy 67, and not recommended. Plans for a trail in this area as part of the Ring the Peak
system are still in development.