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Rainbow Riding

Intermediate/Difficult
 3.0 (8) RECOMMENDED ROUTE

A nice spread of Rainbow Trail goodness with a climb up the road to a descent on singletrack.


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Map Key

24.4

Miles

39.3

KM

85%

Singletrack

9,041' 2,756 m

High

6,962' 2,122 m

Low

3,078' 938 m

Up

3,080' 939 m

Down

5%

Avg Grade (3°)

20%

Max Grade (11°)

Dogs Unknown

E-Bikes Unknown

Features -none-

Overview

This ride makes for a good way to get a major loop of the area in, with a climb along a dirt road followed by some pedal-y traversing across varied terrain.

Need to Know

You may encounter some moto riders on the upper Rainbow section of trail.

Description

Start at the lower TH for the Rainbows and jump on HWY 50 heading south for a quick (1.7-mile) jaunt along the road until you see the turnoff for CR 49. Turn right onto Bear Creek Road (CR101/CR49) and climb the steady road grade for about four miles until you see the cutoff for the Columbine Trail.

Take this heading uphill and keep climbing until you reach the first intersection with Rainbow Trail #1336: Bear Creek to Mears Junction (Methodist Mountain Section). Take this trail right/north and you'll be ascending and descending some punchy ups and downs for another five-mile stretch. When you reach the road (CR108) at mile 9.7, head downhill for a minor stretch and you'll see the trail off to your left again after the second switchback.

Continue on Rainbow here until you reach the next intersection, the uphill to your left will lead you out to HWY 285, whereas the downhill trail (Sand Gulch USFS 124) to your right will take you on one of the highlights of this ride. Take this right and descend for a long ways (2.3 miles) through a mix of single and doubletrack with plenty of rocks thrown in for good measure. At mile 15.3, you should see a righthand turn that will take you onto Double Rainbow Trail.

At the end of Double Rainbow is the trailhead and the start of Little Rainbow. Stay right as you continue out along Little Rainbow with its flowy ups-and-downs. Continue staying right and you'll end out on the top of Race Track. Enjoy this incredible fast and smooth descent back to the car!

Contacts

Shared By:

Dave Reed with improvements by Marcel S

Trail Ratings

  3.3 from 7 votes

#2864

Overall
  3.3 from 7 votes
5 Star
14%
4 Star
29%
3 Star
43%
2 Star
0%
1 Star
14%
Recommended Route Rankings

#364

in Colorado

#2,864

Overall
354 Views Last Month
4,767 Since Jun 5, 2018
Intermediate/Difficult

0%
0%
22%
11%
67%
0%

Photos

Soak up the good views on Double Rainbow.
Apr 2, 2017 near Salida, CO
Swoopy singletrack snakes through a snowy Little Rainbow.
Apr 2, 2017 near Salida, CO
Little Rainbow makes for a great winter ride.
Jan 27, 2017 near Salida, CO
Little Rainbow on an early winter day
Oct 10, 2017 near Salida, CO
Little Rainbow shortly after a spring winter storm.
May 1, 2016 near Salida, CO
Double Rainbow!
Nov 7, 2016 near Salida, CO

Weather


Current Trail Conditions

Update Conditions
All Clear 50 days ago See History
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Check-Ins

Jun 16, 2020
Compton Donohue
Rainbow trail was horrible, the whole ridge line is destroyed by dirt bikes, it was chunky, loose, sandy, narrow. the desents were sketchy and the…
Aug 3, 2019
mike reade
Jun 15, 2019
CJ O'Reilly
hot, and rushed before storm rolled in 27.4mi
Jan 4, 2019
Arthur Philipson
B I’m
Jun 2, 2018
Dave Reed
Perfect tacky conditions on Columbine, a little loose everywhere else. 25mi — 3h 00m