South Valley Loop

A quick after-work ride near Littleton, or a fun test for riders trying to step up their skills.

Mountain Biking Easy

Distance
5.9 km
Ascent
187 m
Descent
186 m
Low Point
1.8 km
High Point
1.9 km
Gradient
VIEW ON MAP
South Valley Loop Map

Description

This an excellent little cruise close to town that's perfect for a quick evening ride. The scenery is worth slowing down to look at, though. The valley floor and hillsides are dotted with trees and punctuated with red rock fins. They’re the same type of rock that makes Red Rocks Amphitheater, but here they are shorter and more scattered, making kind of a forest of stone.

South Valley Park can get pretty packed with hikers and bikers, but the most crowded sections are on wide, easy paths. The singletrack sections are less crowded. Be courteous to other users and remember that riders should yield to hikers. Begin on the popular Coyote Song Trail, then turn onto Lyons Back for a short but tricky climb with rock stairs and water bars. On top, you’ll find easier terrain and nice singletrack on Columbine Trail, in a narrow mini-valley between two long ridges. Make a loop with Cathy Johnson Trail, an easy doubletrack, to come back and ride the Lyon down.

For a longer ride, use Coyote Song to link with Grazing Elk Trail or Rattlesnake Gulch. Grazing Elk is good for beginners and Coyote Gulch for more experienced riders. Those extensions aren’t mapped here, but the park is not hard to navigate. The trails are rideable year-round if they are dry, but they're usually muddy in winter and early spring.

Sources: https://www.jeffco.us/1431/South-Valley-Park https://dayhikesneardenver.com/south-valley-park-ken-caryl/ https://www.jeffco.us/DocumentCenter/View/9384/South-Valley-Park-Map https://ken-carylranch.org/wp-content/uploads/2011/08/KCR-Open-Space-MapRevOct2015.pdf

Difficulty

Easy

Mostly smooth and non-technical singletrack with unavoidable obstacles 2in/5cm tall or less. Avoidable obstacles may be present. Ideal for beginner riders.

Medium Exposure

2 out of 4

The trail contains some obstacles such as outcroppings and rock which could cause injury.

Remoteness

1 out of 4

Close to help in case of emergency.

Best time to visit

April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November, December

Features

  • Flow
  • Technical
  • Picturesque
  • Singletrack
  • Roots
  • Rock Rolls
  • Wooden Feature

Similar routes nearby

Guidebooks in this area