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Echo Canyon Trail

Intermediate
 3.3 (4)

A fun trail into a pretty canyon with large cottonwood trees that provide some much-needed shade.


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Map Key

0.8

Miles

1.3

KM

84%

Runnable

5,077' 1,547 m

High

4,979' 1,518 m

Low

150' 46 m

Up

150' 46 m

Down

7%

Avg Grade (4°)

22%

Max Grade (12°)

Dogs No Dogs

Features Birding · Fall Colors · River/Creek · Views · Wildflowers · Wildlife

The Colorado National Monument is part of the National Park system. There is a fee to enter the park and dogs are not allowed on any trail.

Description

Echo Canyon Trail starts at the Devil's Kitchen parking lot in Colorado National Monument. That is a very popular area and the parking lot is known to fill at times. Instead of waiting for a space to free up, drive into Devil's Kitchen Picnic area and start the run from there. Watch for traffic when walking along the road.

The trail starts at the south end of the parking lot along with three other trails: No Thoroughfare, Devil's Kitchen and Old Gordon. The trail is well marked with signs showing which path to follow for each of these trails. Run Old Gordon Trail for a bit before branching off onto Echo Canyon Trail.

After a short drop downhill from the parking lot, the trail starts to climb steadily upward during the first mile. It climbs about 800ft before turning away from Old Gordon Trail. Much of this uphill part of the run is across bare sandstone. In the spring time, you can see some nice pockets of wildflowers blooming. Cactus flowers are particularly nice to enjoyable with their bright pink, red or yellow flowers.

The trail now heads downhill and then bends right into Echo Canyon. Soon you'll be running through a small forest of cottonwood trees towering overhead. In spring, these trees shed tufts of white seed material that looks just like cotton. At times when the wind blows the falling "cotton" looks like a blizzard of snow. In the fall, these trees turn a pretty yellow. If you are lucky there will be water in the small creek and the sound of water trickling over rocks will add to the appeal of this quiet canyon.

The trail dips and rises over sandy hills then twists and turns through a boulder-strewn canyon.

The trail ends at a magnificent dry pour-off, where cottonwood trees again provide some cooling shade. A perfect spot to sit and enjoy a quiet snack or picnic. Of course, you might also want to give a shout to hear the great echo that bounces back from the high walls around you.

Contacts

Shared By:

Janice Shepherd

Trail Ratings

  3.3 from 4 votes

#24123

Overall
  3.3 from 4 votes
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4 Star
75%
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1 Star
25%
Trail Rankings

#1,981

in Colorado

#24,123

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1,620 Since May 27, 2015
Intermediate

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Photos

A great view across the Grand Junction valley to the Bookcliff Mountains.
May 27, 2015 near Redlands, CO
A prickly pear cactus with a yellow blossom.
May 27, 2015 near Redlands, CO
A 3rd grade class enjoys a spring field trip into Echo Canyon
May 27, 2015 near Redlands, CO
It is hard to capture the huge size of the trees and the towering canyon walls with a single photo
May 27, 2015 near Redlands, CO

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