When the Pikes Peak Greenway Trail was unveiled more than a decade ago, it was called “the mother of all urban trails.” Collaboration among the city of Colorado Springs, the state of Colorado (through Great Outdoors Colorado), private donors, the Colorado Lottery, and non-profit organizations made this trail a reality. Portions of it have existed for decades, but it wasn’t until 2000 that it was connected to the New Santa Fe Trail that goes through the Air Force Academy.
What Makes It Great
Today, it is still the premier urban trail in Colorado Springs, and for those who link it with the New Santa Fe and the Fountain Creek Regional Trail (to the south), it offers dozens of miles of riding on pavement and gravel. As a link to both the American Discovery Trail (which stretches coast to coast, 6,800 miles) and the America the Beautiful Trail, it runs parallel to Monument and Fountain creeks, the two main waterways in Colorado Springs.
It provides access to dozens of other trails, and takes cyclists through surprisingly wooded and riparian areas. Fifteen miles one way on its main section, it’s easy to jump on and off, with side trips for coffee or lunch in and around the downtown. Favorite rest stops include Monument Valley Park, the historic downtown park that provides deep shaded lawns perfect for a quick nap. Start at the south end, accessing the trail at the Gossage Sports Complex. Pack a lunch and stop at one of several city parks along the way.
As you near the north end of this trail (where it intersects with the New Santa Fe Trail), plan a stop at Criterium Bike Shop, right next to the path. Someday, this trail will be part of an ambitious Front Range Trail, a system linking trails from north to south Colorado that’s being supervised by Colorado Parks & Wildlife.
Today, there are nearly 300 miles of this ambitious route completed; when it is done, it will stretch nearly 900 miles from the border with Wyoming to the border with New Mexico.
Who is Going to Love It
Cyclists of all abilities use portions of the Pikes Peak Greenway. Most of it is paved and the numerous exit points make it easy to design a short or longer ride.
Directions, Parking, & Regulations
Parking is available at several trailheads: El Pomar Sports Complex, Dorchester Park, America the Beautiful Park, Roswell Park, Monument Valley Park, Sondermann Park, Gossage Sports Complex, Pulpit Rock trailhead (on N. Nevada Avenue), and Edmondson trailhead (on E. Woodmen Road). There are no fees.
This is a well-used trail; expect runners, cyclists, walkers and dogs (which must be leashed).