May 27, 2020 Slideshows » Columns

North Catamount 

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Bob Falcone
Informational kiosk at the trailhead. The pit toilet is just to the right (not pictured). All mileages start here.
Bob Falcone
Follow the Elder-Fehn trail for about .13 miles until you get to this gate at curve in the trail. Go through the gate and turn left on the Limber Pine Trail. Follow the Ring the Peak signs.
Bob Falcone
At a little under .75 miles the Limber Pine Trail meets the Catamount Trail, which is actually a service road. Turn left here.
Bob Falcone
At a little over a mile, turn right onto the Mule Deer Trail. As an alternative, you can go about 500' further down the road and take the Blue River Trail, which is actually a service road.
Bob Falcone
The Mule Deer Trail is actually a trail and more enjoyable route than going down the Blue River Trail.
Bob Falcone
At a little over 1.5 miles the Mule Deer Trail makes a sharp left turn and goes down a short, but steep section before turning right. Trail then meets the bottom of the Blue River Trail/road. Go directly across the road to the start of the Mackinaw Trail. Alternatively, you can turn left and up the Blue River Trail to the Catamount Trail, where you can turn left and return to the trailhead.
Bob Falcone
The Mackinaw Trail follows the north shore of the North Catamount Reservoir for about 2.4 miles, gently rising and falling along the way, and presenting great views of the north face of Pikes Peak. Along the way you'll likely see anglers, kayakers and a variety of birds enjoying the reservoir.
Bob Falcone
At about 4 miles from the trailhead, the Mackinaw Trail meets the Catamount Trail. You can either turn left here and follow the road back, but your better bet is to turn right onto the road. The difference in distance is minimal and you'll miss a nice feature.
Bob Falcone
Follow the road for just a couple hundred feet and look for where the Mackinaw Trail leaves the road again. On my visit a large pile of rock and a piece of construction equipment blocked the view of the trail.
Bob Falcone
Pick up the trail again off the road.
Bob Falcone
At about 4.1 miles, the Mackinaw Trail meets the Catamount Trail at the north end of the dam that is the east end of the reservoir. There are some informational signs here, and the benches provide a great place to take in the view and grab a snack before starting the return leg of the hike.
Bob Falcone
Turn left (away from the dam) and follow the wide Catamount Trail (service road). This is part of the Ring the Peak Trail system.
Bob Falcone
At approx. 6 miles, the Catamount Trail meets the top of the Blue River Trail. Follow the Catamount Trail in the direction indicated. There is a marker down the road, but it was hidden by construction equipment on my visit.
Bob Falcone
Continue along the Catamount Trail, passing the Mule Deer Trail. At about 6.25 miles, the trail meets the Limber Pine Trail. Turn right here.
Bob Falcone
At about 6.8 miles turn right through the gate and then right onto the Elder-Fehn trail to return to the trailhead.
Bob Falcone
The GPS track of this hike, starting on the left and going counter-clockwise on the loop.
Bob Falcone
On Ring the Peak trail markers, the green arrow means you're gong counter-clockwise around Pikes Peak, and the brown indicates you're going in a clockwise direction.
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Bob Falcone
Informational kiosk at the trailhead. The pit toilet is just to the right (not pictured). All mileages start here.

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