Chimney Gulch Trail and Apex Park
On Wednesday, July 22nd, I rode up Chimney Gulch Trail and down Apex with my boyfriend, Jeff. We started at 2:30 in the afternoon and I was thinking that it was going to be incredibly hot climbing up the mountain at that time especially since there wasn’t much tree coverage in the very beginning. From my house, we take the bike path until the trail starts, which is nice and convenient. As we started climbing, I could feel myself sweating a lot and breathing a little hard, but I had to suck it up. We only saw one guy mountain biking so it was nice that it wasn’t too crowded. When the road of Lookout Mountain and the trail met at an intersection, the clouds came in randomly and the temperature went down. I was thinking, “Wow this is what I was asking for!” It was great. When we kept climbing, it start sprinkling. It was upper 80s all morning and it was so great that the clouds came in. I checked the weather before the ride and it called for no rain. Sometimes, it’s just Colorado being Colorado! All of sudden, it started to pour rain and luckily, we were in the trees just below Windy Saddle and that’s when we decided to stop.
About five minutes later, we began to ride again. I was completely soaked, but it felt great. As we kept climbing passed Windy Saddle, there were quite a bit of people on the trail. There were lots and lots of people hiking with their family. I usually don’t see that many people on trail during the week so it had to have been tourists. Once we climbed to the top, we were at about 7,401 ft. The temperature was nice and cool up there so we were loving it! We then proceeded to go to Apex. The trails were a little muddy and wet, but not too bad. We rode down enchanted forest, which is one of my favorite trails on Apex. We then went up Hardscrabble to Pick-N-Sledge to Grubstake. I started doing this loop a long time ago and still do the same thing pretty much every time I ride Apex. When we got back on the main trail, there were a lot of people climbing up! It was about 5:15 so people were getting off work and it was a beautiful day to ride. We took the bike path all the way to my house and it turned out to be a 16.2 mile loop with 2,543 ft of climbing. I was definitely pooped.
Those are pretty much my favorite trails in Golden and my favorite loop to do. I usually wouldn’t go ride those trails in the heat of the day, but we got lucky with some cloud coverage and rain! I would recommend going in the morning or the evening when it’s a little cooler outside.
By Ariana Dittmer, City of Golden Community Marketing Intern