A great loop that climbs to the highest point in the Tabeguache trail network. Mostly technical, rocky and steep singletrack with some packed sand doubletrack on the way back to the trailhead.
Be alert for mountain bikers. While trail etiquette dictates you have the right of way, some sections of trail are technical enough to make it impossible for a biker to change course or stop without serious risk of injury, you'll be happy to take a break on some of the hills anyhow.
Also beware false summits...
From the Tabeguache Trailhead off of Monument Road head right out of the parking lot alongside the bike park following signs for the Tabeguache Trail.
When you reach the Eagle's Tail
/Pet-e-kes junction head right into the wash. At the Pet-e-kes junction, stay right to climb up the Eagle's Tail
. Stay along the ridge following signs for Eagle's Tail
/Eagle's wing. Plenty of climbing will eventually lead you to the base of the hardest climb, bail out here on the Eagle's Connector trail if you are already feeling worked.
Grind up the next hill where you are greeted by amazing views of the Colorado National Monument, Book Cliffs, the Grand Mesa and Serpents Trail
across the valley below. Stay sharp and know that you have a couple of false summits before you get to the highest point.
The top of the loop brings you to a lone tree growing out of the bedrock looking down on Andy's Loop
, the Echo Canyon Trail
and The Ribbon
. Get your downhill technical head on and start the descent over bulbous, rocky and loose trail. Follow the path of least resistance (avoiding the mountain bike only Free Lunch Trail that heads uphill at a junction) and bomb down the hill following signs for the Tabeguache Trail.
Take Tabeguache Trail all the way back to the parking lot.
Lots of bunnies, occasional rattlesnakes.