Level: Advanced
Length: 6 mi (9.7 km)
Surface: Singletrack
Configuration: Out & Back
Elevation: -
Total: 9 riders
 

Mountain Biking Pancake Rocks

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#387 of 1,344 mountain bike trails in Colorado
#4340 in the world

This trail has a couple forks that offer multiple route options--up to three separate out-and-back's are possible on one ride. The trail climbs sharply on gravelly singletrack. At 0.8 miles, a fork left goes through Horsethief Park, a pleasant subalpine meadow flanked by pines on one side and aspens on the other. For Pancake Rocks, continue straight. At one mile, take the right turn for Pancake Rocks. Straight is a nice side trip, especially on the return, a mere half mile to the lovely Horsethief Falls. Once you make the right turn, get ready to push--the trail climbs 600' in under a half mile up an eroded washout before relenting only slightly up some still brutal switchbacks. As the trail tops out after about two miles, look for a small opening on the right--this is the path to the Pancake Rocks, a cool rock formation with a fantastic million-mile view beyond. You can continue on straight on the main trail for another half mile or so for some great forest cruising after which the trail will plummet downhill, ultimately ending at private property.

First added by John Fisch on May 1, 2020. Last updated May 1, 2020. → add an update
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Getting there
From Hwy 24 in Divide, take Hwy 67 south toward Cripple Creek. About 9.3 miles south of Divide, you will go around an abandoned tunne. The trailhead is immediately after the south tunnel entrance.
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Reviews

  • vbeckman74
    ****

    You WILL walk your bike. The top is cool and the air is thin. We swore we'd never come back when we got to the top, but after we rode the very doable, fast, semi-scary downhill, we reconsidered.

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  • John Fisch
    ****

    The grade of this trail makes it a real challenge and most people will walk a full mile of it. The stretch after the second fork and the ensuing switchbacks are beyond challenging, especially since you're starting at 9,700'. However, the view from the top is spectacular and the plummet back down the way you came will put a huge grin on your face. Well worth it. For additional miles, you can head out through Horsethief Park for a few more miles of high altitude singletrack. This is a very popular hiking route, so go off-peak if you can to maximize your fun.

    EDIT: The clearing at the top mentioned in my description is not the actual Pancake Rocks--you've got another mile of significant drops and climbs before you get there--the trail dead ends on the pancake rocks--you'll know when you're there. This is beyond fantastic when the aspens are at their peak, but don't even think of going on a weekend in aspen season.* Review edited 9/27/2012

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