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Picture Rock/Wild Turkey Loop

Intermediate
 4.0 (89) RECOMMENDED ROUTE

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


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Map Key

14.6

Miles

23.5

KM

100%

Singletrack

6,666' 2,032 m

High

5,394' 1,644 m

Low

1,324' 403 m

Up

1,325' 404 m

Down

3%

Avg Grade (2°)

13%

Max Grade (7°)

Dogs No Dogs

E-Bikes Unknown

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.

Contacts

Shared By:

Peter Wills

Trail Ratings

  4.0 from 89 votes

#135

Overall
  4.0 from 89 votes
5 Star
28%
4 Star
48%
3 Star
18%
2 Star
4%
1 Star
1%
Recommended Route Rankings

#44

in Colorado

#135

Overall
402 Views Last Month
20,024 Since Apr 13, 2017
Intermediate

0%
1%
72%
6%
20%
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
A sign warning of an aggressive grouse and the aggressive grouse
Apr 18, 2015 near Lyons, CO
I love the forest canopy of Heil Ranch.
Aug 25, 2016 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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Weather


Current Trail Conditions

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Bad / Closed 3 days ago See History
Add Your Check-In

Check-Ins

Apr 11, 2021
Cara Hubbell
With Zac, Josh, Chad, and Beau. 14.4mi — 2h 04m
Apr 10, 2021
Kearse George
Oct 17, 2020
Chris S
Oct 10, 2020
Du Tran
13.9mi — 2h 09m
Oct 4, 2020
Chris S
Oct 4, 2020
Matthew Koenig
Oct 3, 2020
Hayden Hough
Oct 3, 2020
Patrick Holt
14.2mi — 2h 40m