Climbing the Chimney
With warm weather on the rise (minus the recent snow storm), race season is kicking off. My first race of the season is on Saturday. This is a short run with a high intensity climb for the first two miles in Colorado Springs. Because of the incline my normal training routine was not going to work. So I researched trails close to me with an incline. I found what I was looking for in Golden, CO and my training trail quickly became Chimney Gulch Trail.
Chimney Gulch Trail starts in Golden and climbs 2.5 miles up Lookout Mountain. During that 2.5 miles, be prepared to ascent 2000 ft. The trail is hiker, biker, and dog friendly. It is considered a moderate to advanced hike due to the incline and the obstacles. Throughout the hike, you will cross streams, have nice pockets of shade, and see gorgeous views of Golden.
Upon reaching the top, you can continue hiking on Lookout Mountain Trail or Beaver Brook Trail or you could visit Buffalo Bill’s Grave or the Nature Center. No matter what you decide to do, make sure you take a break to check out the view. You will have breathtaking views of Golden- North Table Mesa, South Table Mesa, Coors Brewery right between them, Colorado School of Mines.
When you are finished hiking, head into Golden for some lunch. Bob’s Atomic Burger is a great choice for a burger or go to Golden’s second largest brewery, Golden City Brewery, for a beer and whatever the food truck has to offer.
Enjoying the great outdoors is fun; however, remember you are not the only one enjoying them. With this in mind, it is important to remember trail etiquette as you hike, run, or bike. As a friendly reminder, below are a few common things to remember:
- Bikers yield to all other trail traffic– horses and hikers.
- Downhill yields to uphill– people going uphill generally have a smaller field of vision and could be in a rhythm.
- Be vocal about passing– let people know you are coming up behind them.
- Stay on the trail– help preserve the environment.
By following these rules, you will likely meet some interesting people and have some great conversations. You are also doing your part to keep the trails and yourself safe!
So have a great hike, be courteous to others, and enjoy the great outdoors!