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Sanitas Valley Trail



1.2 mile 1.9 kilometer point to point
83% Runnable


Ascent: 541' 165 m
Descent: 0' 0 m
High: 6,040' 1,841 m
Low: 5,500' 1,676 m


Avg Grade: 8% (5°)
Max Grade: 20% (11°)


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Trail shared by Megan W

A favorite in-town trail enjoyed by the masses.

Megan W

Features Views · Wildflowers · Wildlife

Runner Notes

Gentle, steady gradient makes this trail very run-able. Wide trail and smooth surface make for good footing.


There are multiple trail access points where Mapleton Ave becomes Sunshine Canyon Road but most users start from the official trailhead parking lot just up canyon. This user friendly lot has trash receptacles and toilets but actual parking spots are always scarce.

The Sanitas Valley Trail ascends the broad valley between Mount Sanitas and Dakota Ridge. The smooth, wide, gravel trail makes for easy footing except for a couple short sections damaged by the 2013 flooding. Views to the south include the edges of the iconic Boulder Flatirons. Fields of wildflowers line the exposed, sunny trail. A bench at the top of this trail offers panoramic views of Boulder and beyond.

At almost any time of day you'll share the Sanitas Valley with off-leash dogs, enthusiastic kids, power walkers and trail runners trying to improve their record time. Happily, this trail is wide enough to absorb all users.

Flora & Fauna

Note that mountain lions and bears pass through this area and although rangers do their best to put up warning signs about recent activity, dawn and dusk are the times to be most aware.

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Feb 24, 2020
Erik Funk
Pleasant St -> Sunshine Canyon + Sanitas Valley 7.6mi — 1h 14m
Jan 29, 2020
Erik Funk
6mi — 0h 58m
Mar 18, 2018
Cris Soares
Sat at the top near the bench and enjoyed the view for a while before heading back into civilization. :) 2mi — 1h 00m
Nov 25, 2017
Alicia D
2mi — 0h 45m
Jul 6, 2017
Jen McMurtrey
Jul 5, 2015
Gus Delaporte

Trail Ratings

  3.4 from 7 votes


  3.4 from 7 votes
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in Colorado


57 Views Last Month
2,055 Since Nov 7, 2014



Trail runners enjoy their winter workout
Dec 5, 2014 near Boulder, CO
Late season flowers on the Sanitas Valley Trail
Nov 7, 2014 near Boulder, CO
View from the top of Dakota Ridge
Aug 2, 2015 near Boulder, CO
Steep upper section of Goat Trail can be trecherous
Nov 8, 2014 near Boulder, CO
Beautiful broad valley views to the south
Nov 7, 2014 near Boulder, CO
Looking down the Sanitas Valley from the Dakota Ridge Trail
Nov 7, 2014 near Boulder, CO