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North Trail - Western Section



4.4 mile 7.2 kilometer point to point
79% Runnable


Ascent: 875' 267 m
Descent: -1,390' -424 m
High: 9,202' 2,805 m
Low: 7,911' 2,411 m


Avg Grade: 10% (6°)
Max Grade: 27% (15°)


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The best of the North Trail, with aspens, wildflowers, and jaw-dropping views.

Nick Wilder

Features Fall Colors · Views · Wildflowers

The portion north of the Davos Trail is closed April 15 to June 20


Access the start of this trail from the North Trail - Middle Section or up the short and easy Buffehr Creek Connector. The North Trail - Western Section is also called Trappers Run.

Start up an easy, smooth, gradual ascent up deep aspen forest. It's thick and lush here with lots of wildflowers, and you can't hear the highways, which is a nice bonus. It's a good climb, but relatively easy for this area.

Arrive at the top of the climb to a meadow with expansive views from the Gore Range all the way to the Holy Cross Wilderness. This is one of the better views in the entire Vail Valley.

Start downhill with well over a mile of gradual descending through beautiful aspen forests. The trail then gets quite steep for about a half mile and a little looser.

Arrive at a dirt road. If you're tired, there's a quick escape to West Vail to the left, but to get some more singletrack, go right. Follow this road into and out of a creek and find the last bit of the North Trail singletrack on your left after half a mile. This last section has some smooth, pretty easy switchbacks down to the valley floor.

Definitely a highlight in the area.

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Need to Know, Dogs Allowed, Flora & Fauna, Runner Notes


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Aug 24, 2018
Mandy Robison
Started Middle North TrailHead. O&B 3000’ 11.8 miles 3:30

Trail Ratings

  3.7 from 3 votes


in Vail


  3.7 from 3 votes
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in Vail


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2 Views Last Month
1,141 Since Jul 6, 2015



Heck of a rewarding run!
Jul 6, 2015 near Vail, CO
Bright green aspens!
Jul 6, 2015 near Vail, CO
Flowers up to eye-level!
Jul 6, 2015 near Vail, CO
The summit view on a grey day.
Jul 6, 2015 near Vail, CO
Wide open meadows allow nice panoramas of the surrounding snow-covered peaks
Jul 6, 2015 near Minturn, CO
Be prepared for amazing wildflowers on this trail!
Jul 6, 2015 near Minturn, CO


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