This is a beautiful segment of the Colorado Trail that winds throughout ponderosa forests. This portion maintains a somewhat steady elevation profile, especially in comparison to other segments that reach into the high alpine. This is a mostly non-technical section, and is enjoyable throughout.
The trail is smooth and rolling and consists of small gravel, while mostly remaining single track. The trail is shared by bikers and day hikers but is quiet in general. In the area there are some small creeks but along this section things remain pretty dry. The gravel soil dries out pretty quickly so when other areas are muddy this area can be dry. It's very runnable and pleasant and not very steep or technical. With its proximity to Denver, it does get some moderate use.
This section of the Colorado Trail is pretty level and rolling, with the exception of a dip/climb into and out of a valley approximately 9 miles into the route. It winds its way through pleasant ponderosa pine forests, making for an enjoyable outing on easier terrain. The largely shaded trail is smooth and gravelly and stays mostly singletrack in this section. The trail is shared by bikers and foot traffic but remains pretty quiet and secluded in general.
The trail is not overly steep, rocky or technical. Visitors will have plenty of access to scenic areas and views along the way, and can easily connect this trail to many other trails within Buffalo Creek, and surrounding wilderness areas. The trail does provide a nice, remote getaway. In the area you'll find interesting rock and boulder outcroppings, meadows and trails winding through areas where previous fires have exposed unique terrain to create an interesting landscape of downed trees, rocks and open grassy meadows mixed with pine forest.
This particular section does stay mostly wooded and is level at about 7,800 feet, until the end, where you'll climb to more like 8,000 feet. This trail is best in the spring and fall when temperatures are cooler as the area can be warm in the summer months.
Once you leave the confines of Buffalo Creek, passing the Meadows Group Campground, the trail stays nestled in the pine-filled woods, but begins a grueling climb to its terminus at CT - Segment 4
Deer, wildflowers, pines, birds, and butterflies, all call this area home.