Mesa Trail

 11 votes

6.3 Miles 10.1 Kilometers

 

89% 

Runnable

Singletrack

801' 244 m

Ascent

-1,190' -363 m

Descent

6,428' 1,959 m

High

5,623' 1,714 m

Low

6%

Avg Grade (3°)

17%

Max Grade (9°)

All Clear

21 days agoUpdate

A backbone of the south Boulder trail system that hugs the foothills.

Brian Smith

Overview

Features: Birding — River/Creek — Views — Wildflowers — Wildlife
Dogs: Leashed

Runner Notes

This trail makes for a great out and back run that works out to be roughly a half-marathon.

Description

Mesa Trail runs north to south all the way from the top of Bluebell Road in Chautauqua to the South Mesa Trailhead near Eldorado Springs. As a product of its extended nature, Mesa Trail travels up and down through varied terrain and environments. The general pattern the Mesa Trail follows is into and out of drainages and across flatter sections in between.

Mesa trail connects to pretty much every major east-west trail in south Boulder. Trail junctions include the Kohler and Enchanted Mesa trails, the NCAR trails, Bear Canyon Trail, Fern Canyon trail, North and South Fork Shanahan Trail, Upper Big Bluestem Trail, Shadow Canyon, Homestead Trail and Towhee trails.

Trail users can expect to travel through mixed grassland/prairie and ponderosa pine savannah. Looking westward, great views of the Flatirons and frontrange peaks can be had. Simultaneously, vistas of the plains are on offer to the east. Near the junction with Shadow Canyon South Spur, there are great views of devil's thumb, a large rock tower on South Boulder Peak's southern ridge.

The largest and most sustained elevation change is on Mesa Trail's southern end as it descends into Eldorado Canyon. This portion of trail also happens to be mostly exposed so heading up it during the summer can be a scorcher.

Flora & Fauna

Black bears and mountain lions inhabit this area. The area is rich with wildlife including Peregrine Falcons, Red-tailed Hawks, songbirds, mule deer, and coyotes. This trail passes through a mixture mixed grass prairie ponderosa pine savannah.

Rate Trail


   Clear

4.5 from 11 votes


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Your Check-Ins

Check-Ins

Aug 5, 2017
David Fisher Boersma
6mi — 1h 05m
May 2, 2017
Nathan Rilla
Super classic. One of the best trails in the country for sure. 8.1mi
Jan 29, 2017
Noah Price
Oct 3, 2015
Mr Singleton
Jun 28, 2015
Simon Pendleton
Mesa out and back! 12mi — 1h 52m
Jan 12, 2015
JonathanC

Trail Ratings

  4.5 from 11 votes

#66

Overall
  4.5 from 11 votes
5 Star
45%
4 Star
55%
3 Star
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2 Star
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1 Star
0%
Rankings

#18

in Colorado

#66

Overall
294 Views Last Month
1,830 Since Dec 17, 2014
Intermediate/Difficult Intermediate/Difficult

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38%
63%
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Conditions


All Clear 21 days ago
Dry: Check Boulder County closures for South Mesa trailhead.
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