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Picture Rock/Wild Turkey Loop

Intermediate/Difficult

Trail

14.6 mile 23.5 kilometer loop
100% Singletrack
Intermediate/Difficult

Elevation

Ascent: 1,324' 403 m
Descent: -1,325' -404 m
High: 6,666' 2,032 m
Low: 5,394' 1,644 m

Grade

Avg Grade: 3% (2°)
Max Grade: 13% (7°)

Dogs

No Dogs
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Map Key

Trail shared by Peter Wills

A combination of a few of the best intermediate trails in the Boulder/Lyons area.

Peter Wills

Electric Mountain Bikes Unknown

Features -none-

Overview

Buttery smooth on the bottom half, and rocky and technical on the top, this trail has it all. The hard work on the way up is paid back with a beautiful, flowing descent. There's a spectacular viewpoint on the Wild Turkey Trail. You can also continue on the Ponderosa Loop and add Wapiti Trail for a full tour of Heil Ranch.

Description

From the Boulder Mountain Bike Alliance: "This first time you ride this trail, it's gonna feel all jumbled and funky like trying to force conversation on a first date in high school. But, after a couple of runs on this, you'll get your groove on, and it's a flowing pump track of silliness."

All the turns, berms, and rocks mix together for a grand adventure that's quickly become one of the area's most popular trails. Start at the Picture Rock trailhead, and head up. The climb starts out pretty mellow and continues that way for the first two-and-a-half miles or so, but make sure to save your energy through this section.

As you continue, you'll eventually pass a large grain silo. This is where the climbing starts to get rocky. Make sure to carry your momentum through the rock gardens as you'll need it to get over some of the larger obstacles.

After another three miles or so, you'll reach the end of Picture Rock where it intersects the Wild Turkey Trail. Head left to start a clockwise loop. The rocky climbing continues, but will soon flatten out where you turn right onto the Ponderosa Loop. There are some ups and down ahead, but the trend from here is downwards.

Halfway through the Ponderosa Loop, you'll arrive at a beautiful lookout. Stop and enjoy the view, then double back a short distance to take the right back onto the Wild Turkey Trail. When you return to the intersection for Picture Rock, turn left and begin back down.

The descent starts out rocky, but smooths out past the silo. Enjoy the flow on this section; it's some of the best in the Boulder area. Soon you'll be back to the parking lot where you began.

On the way down Picture Rock it's tempting to rip, especially after things smooth out after the silo. Just be aware of sections with low visibility and watch out for other trail users.

Biked this trail?

We need help with the following missing trail information:

Family Friendly, ADA Accessible, Need to Know, Features, Electic Mountain Bikes Allowed, History & Background

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Check-Ins

Jun 4, 2020
Zach Renshaw
13.9mi — 2h 46m
Jun 2, 2020
Zach Renshaw
11.3mi — 2h 09m
May 24, 2020
Andrew McCullough
May 18, 2020
Joe Frydenlund
Apr 10, 2020
Maribeth Olsen
14.6mi
Oct 19, 2019
Craig Voellmicke
Sep 28, 2019
Travis G
Sep 28, 2019
Peter Byrne

Trail Ratings

  4.0 from 72 votes

#130

Overall
  4.0 from 72 votes
5 Star
28%
4 Star
49%
3 Star
18%
2 Star
6%
1 Star
0%
Ride Rankings

#46

in Colorado

#130

Overall
756 Views Last Month
16,237 Since Apr 13, 2017
Intermediate/Difficult

0%
0%
75%
0%
24%
1%

Photos

Looking out over Heil Valley.
Jun 17, 2016 near Lyons, CO
One of the landmarks of Picture Rock Trail.
Jun 12, 2019 near Lyons, CO
I love the forest canopy of Heil Ranch.
Aug 25, 2016 near Lyons, CO
A sign warning of an aggressive grouse and the aggressive grouse
Apr 18, 2015 near Lyons, CO
A nice resting spot with a bench and a view.
May 25, 2013 near Lyons, CO
Overlook on Ponderosa Trail is incredible!
Sep 19, 2017 near Lyons, CO

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