If you’re lucky enough to be in the mountains, you’re lucky enough!

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Stunning Rampart Reservoir Trail

One of the key links in the Colorado Springs water supply chain, Rampart Reservoir sits at 9000' elevation in the Rampart Range approximately 17 miles up the mountain from town and has approximately 500 surface acres. From the eastern shores of the reservoir there is an awesome perspective of the grandeur of Pikes Peak. While we have enjoyed this trail by mountain bike in the past, today would be the maiden voyage as a trail run. Traffic was light today for a summer day, however fishing is limited and boating prohibited right now because of problems caused by growing numbers of Zebra Mussel. These thumbnail-sized critters like to clog water lines and water pumps in the system that brings water to town - not good!
Above is a nice shot of Kathleen running on the western shore of the reservoir. We started at the eastern end of the dam wall and headed west, so the western shores were our first trails of the day. We don't get much water time aside from small streams, so this was a good "water-day" for us!
Found a nice ledge for a group photo which always helps - this was right past the foot bridge where traffic merges in from the mountain bike trailhead off of Rampart Range Road. This is also the spot where water comes in from the pipeline off the Continental Divide, many miles to the west.
Steve enjoys the nice flow of trails and the great sunny day we had!
One of the many inlets that the trail follows along the shoreline. While there are no major climbs, this trail is a continual flow of short ups and downs (see profile below) that begin to sap a little from the legs. The 11.5 loop gains an accumulated 2250' elevation, and when combined with a base elevation exceeding 9000', this is a challenging (but extremely fun!) run.

Tomorrow is forecast for clouds and much cooler, so we were very thankful for such great trails on which to spend a sunny day in the mountains - good times!
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