|My Time||1hr 54min|
|Closest Town||Idaho Springs|
|Food Nearby||Parkside Cafe|
Floyd Hill was a nice short and quick trail just off the highway. There are some quick elevation gains which lead to some really nice views coupled with the surrounding mountains.
The first part of this hike is walking up a mostly barren field with the highway noise fully in ear shot. It takes .8 miles to get into an area that is more wooded and a little more like a hike. The first field does have a trail that is well defined. It is hard packed dirt from all of the bikes that usually use this trail.
Two Tenth’s of a mile in there is a trail junction where you have an option to take a couple of different trails. The middle trail is a hiker only but I think the far left trail is a bit of a better hike and would suggest that way to go.
The Woods and Floyd Hill
After the walk through the open space you will find yourself in some woods that help knock down the traffic noise a bit but you can still hear it. The trail now starts to switchback up the rest of the hill. The switchbacks are a bit unique in that they are more rounded and some have banked corners for all the bikers on the trail.
The views start to improve a lot as you get higher and higher up. While you have to look through the trees to see the best of the views, you will be able to see the mountains to the west on one side of the switch and the foothills while traveling to the east.
There are a couple of junctions once you get higher up on the hill. The first one will take you back down the hill on that hiker only path you passed and you want to stay to the left. The second one will continue the loop to the top of Floyd Hill or around the backside of the hill before going to the top.
I took the trail that went straight and up to the top of the hill first. At the top of Floyd Hill there is a warning sign that the descent called the “Sluice” is for bikes only and dangerous. When you get to this spot you are at the top and you have two options. AllTrails will tell you to turn around and head back down to finish the hike. If you take the trail to the left you will complete a figure 8 loop around the backside of the hill that I really liked.
The backside of the hill is a more heavily wooded area and the trail gets much narrower, to about a foot. It is mostly bikers on this section but it is OK to hike. I really enjoyed it as this is the only spot that you are pretty much clear of the traffic noise from the highway.
The loop will meander around the backside of the hill before coming back to the west side where you can see the mountains again before connecting back to the trail you took up. It is the rockiest part of the trail and you will have to walk over some large ones.
Once you connect you follow the trail back own the hill. This time when you come to the junction go ahead and take the eastern trail that looks like 2 ruts for car wheels to complete a small figure 8. This is the hiking only trail that connects back to the bottom of the hill. I really liked this one. It gave good views of the foothills that were shrouded in a wildfire haze of smoke on this day.
This will take you back to the parking area and complete this short little hike.
Distance and Elevation
If you don’t have the AllTrails app you might want to check it out, I really love mine. It records your progress and is a great way to search for hikes that are nearby and gives you difficulty measurements. According to AllTrails today’s hike was around 4.36 miles and had a total elevation gain of about 748 feet including undulations. That put the high point at around 8,576 feet. I was also moving for a total of 1 hours and 54 minutes.
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This hike is pretty straight forward. Even though there are some steep sections they are mostly quick and followed by some flatter land. Here is the step count from my Fitbit.
The trail was a pretty even mix of hard packed dirt trail and larger rocks to walk on. There were a ton of mountain bike riders and you could tell this was a big biking trail. Because of that the dirt is really packed down nicely and the trail is a little narrower. Keep an eye out for the bikes as you go. I would suggest a good pair of hiking shoes as it helps with the inclines.
There is a dirt parking lot just off of I-70 on US 40 that has room for about 20 cars. The nearest exit coming from Denver is the Floyd Hill exit. There are no restroom facilities available at the trailhead.
For a short nearby hike the Loyd Hill loop was OK. My biggest problem was that you never really got to a point where you didn’t hear the highway noise around you. There are some nice views of the mountains and the foothills periodically on the hill as well that makes for a nice walk.
This is very popular for mountain bikers. While never mountain biking myself, it looked like it might be fun to do there. There are banked corners on most of the switchbacks and some cool rock elements to bike around.
As far as a hike, if you are looking for quicker and shorter hike to just get in a quick workout it is passable. I suggest taking the backside of the mountain. It seemed better than the out and back that shows up on Alltrails.
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