• Author: rexnipper
  • Created: September 14, 2019
  • Updated: September 22, 2019
Route type: Singletrack
Difficulty grade: Black

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  • Distance Instructions
  • Distance 12.28 miles
  • Time 0 s
  • Speed 4 mph
  • Min altitude 6,289 ft
  • Peak 11,814 ft
  • Climb 531 ft
  • Descent 6,050 ft

Trail 652 to Barr Trail aka (Elk Park Downhill)

If you like riding downhill, here's one for the record books.  This is around a 12 mile downhill along the northern face of Pike's Peak.  You can do the trail as an up and back, but you also have the option of riding from the Pike's Peak Highway.  It is 5 dollars per person, or 35 dollars per car to drive up the highway.

Elk Park Downhill on my ASR5 and 52 year old legs


Getting There (as a downhill)

  • Take the Pike's Peak Highway about a mile past Glen Cove.
  • Look for the turnoff on your left. If you get to Devils Playground you have gone too far.
  • Park anywhere.

Getting There (as an Up and Back)

  • Drive to Manitou Springs and follow the signs for the Cog Railway.
  • Drive past the train station and take a right at the Power Station.  The parking area is at the top of the hill.

Trail Description

If starting at the top, there is a sign at the trailhead that states Severy Creek is closed.  However, that is not Severy Creek Trail.  They need to move the sign.  The trailhead is actually for Trail 652.  This will take you down to Barr Camp, and eventually down to Manitou Springs.   The trail is very easy to follow.  When you get to the fork, to left.  If you take the right you will end up at the Ghost Town Hollow, and Oil Creek Tunnel.  But it will be an out and back.  Stay on trail 652 until you see Barr Camp on your left.  Take the left onto the main trail, and follow it down to the bottom.  This is a killer downhill with lots of rocks, technical sections, and fast, fast downhill.  Keep in mind that once you get on Barr Trail, there will be a lot of hikers.  Ride with CAUTION!


If you decide to ride this trail as an out and back, head up Barr Trail to Barr Camp, and go right at the camp.  It is a doable climb, but it is a climb almost the whole way.  Plan for all kinds of weather, and be prepared for mechanicals.  It's a long way from anywhere once you get up there.

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