September 14, 2018 Slideshows » Columns

The new Dixon Trail 

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Although still closed to the public at the time of our trip, park officials expect the Dixon Trail in Cheyenne Mountain State Park to open to the public September 2018, with a formal ribbon-cutting slated for October. In the meantime, please heed the "No Trespassing" signs at the entrance to the trail. Park Rangers are issuing tickets to people found on the trail.

I was recently given permission to hike the still under construction trail to get a preview of what users can expect. 
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Bob Falcone
The Dixon Trail begins at the farthest point on the North Talon Trail loop. If you go there and still see these no trespassing signs, stay off the trail.
Bob Falcone
Trail markers for the Dixon Trail are similar to others in Cheyenne Mountain.
Bob Falcone
The trail is home to a lot of wildlife, including this deer we shared the trail with.
Bob Falcone
An addition to the trail markers on the Dixon Trails are mileage markers — every half mile — that tell you how far you've gone. The other side of the marker gives the distance coming from the other direction, which will also tell you how far to go.
Bob Falcone
There are some great views of rock formations on the mountain along the trail.
Bob Falcone
The trail is easy to follow. If you're not used to doing long hikes — time and/or distance — mile marker 2 is a good turn-around point on the trail. It's far enough up to give you a good view of the surrounding area, and at about 10 miles round trip from the Limekiln trailhead, it's a decent length hike. The trail also gets more difficult after mile marker 2.
Bob Falcone
A little over 7 miles into the hike, the remnants of a military T-33 crash from the 1960's are near the trail. Respect the site and don't disturb anything. It's also illegal to remove the remains of a crash.
Bob Falcone
After the crash site the trail winds through a meadow of high grasses and wildflowers. About half-way through the meadow, the Mountain Loop Trail cuts off to the right as the Dixon Trail curves left. On this hike we did not explore the side trails.
Bob Falcone
The trail re-enters a wooded area after the meadow.
Bob Falcone
There is a nice aspen grove right after the trail re-enters the woods.
Bob Falcone
The route of the Dixon Trail gives it views mostly to the south and southwest, so don't expect much in the way of views of Colorado Springs. But the views to the south are of areas that tend to be inaccessible and not seen by many.
Bob Falcone
After ascending a short rocky section, the trail then descends, and comes to an end at an old dirt road. Across the road from this sign is the beginning of a new loop trail, but it was unsigned and appeared to be in the early stages of construction.
Bob Falcone
A few of the many antennas on the mountain are visible from the end of the trail.
Bob Falcone
The track from the hike, starting with the Limekiln Trailhead on the right side of the map, going to end of the Dixon Trail near the upper left corner of the map. Our hike was 16.3 miles round trip with 3210' of elevation gain.
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Bob Falcone
The Dixon Trail begins at the farthest point on the North Talon Trail loop. If you go there and still see these no trespassing signs, stay off the trail.

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