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Ute Trail to Ajax Sundeck



3.1 mile 5.0 kilometer point to point
53% Runnable


Ascent: 3,211' 979 m
Descent: 0' 0 m
High: 11,207' 3,416 m
Low: 7,996' 2,437 m


Avg Grade: 20% (11°)
Max Grade: 47% (25°)


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Trail shared by Jason Smith

Straight up from town to the Sundeck on top of Ajax!

Jason Smith

Features Fall Colors · Views · Wildflowers · Wildlife


This is the quickest way to get the highest directly from town. Ute Trail goes through a beautiful forest and is the most pristine section of this run. Ute is often crowded, so you might need to stop or slow down on the steep switchbacks. Most day-hikers turn back at the end of Ute.

Ajax Trail is a combo of singletrack & resort service road. You'll be running next to lifts / equipment, but the outing has great flow overall & the views just keep getting better.

Need to Know

If the Silver Queen Gondola is running, you can download for free. Dogs are allowed to download, but must be leashed. Bring beer money for a cool one at the Sundeck!


Power up the Ute Trail - the steepest part of the journey. Ute Trail ends at a small overlook. Punch it to the summit on the unsigned, but obvious Ajax Trail.

From the trailhead, punch it up numerous switchbacks. If you can run this whole thing, you are in damn good shape because it's steep!l

Ute Trail delivers full value in just one mile. It ends at an overlook which consists of a break in the dense trees and a small plateau / rocky outcrop. Enjoy a stunning panorama of Aspen.

Continue on the trail after Ute Trail ends. Ute is by far the steepest part of the journey, so get into the flow & punch it to the top of Ajax. Bring beer money for a refreshment at the Sundeck restaurant, soak in the views & take the Silver Queen gondola right back to town.

Note that dogs are allowed to download the gondola, provided they are leashed. Be sure to check operating hours for the gondola in advance if you are looking for a ride down.

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Flora & Fauna, Runner Notes, History & Background


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Jul 5, 2019
Zachary Elgart
I ran from our Airbnb up the river so the mileage is a bit higher than listed. Description of trail minimizes the steepness of the climb after the Ute 4.1mi — 1h 29m
Oct 14, 2016
John Anderson
Aug 29, 2016
Kate Skiba
Hiked this one! 3.1mi — 1h 55m

Trail Ratings

  4.6 from 10 votes


in Aspen


  4.6 from 10 votes
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in Aspen


in Colorado


20 Views Last Month
6,479 Since Jun 30, 2015



Ute Trail descent
Jun 16, 2015 near Aspen, CO
At the top of the Ute Trail
Jun 16, 2015 near Aspen, CO
Recovering on a mellow stretch midway up Ute Trail
Jun 16, 2015 near Aspen, CO
Finish Line at Aspen Mountain!
May 27, 2015 near Aspen, CO
Consistently steep
Jun 16, 2015 near Aspen, CO
Beautiful day on the Ute Trail
Jun 16, 2015 near Aspen, CO


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