Heil Valley Ranch

Perfect day for a ride.  Nice breeze with a temperature in the mid 60’s.  I decided to go to Heil Valley Ranch which is part of the North Foothills Open Space Area in Boulder County.  This area contains an abundance of wildlife including bobcats, black bears and mountain lions.  I didn’t see any of these, however, I’m sure they saw me.   From the parking lot the ride starts with about a half mile of fire road followed by two miles of singletrack climbing the Wapiti Trail.  The climbing is easy with several jagged rock gardens, all very rideable with the right line.  After the initial 2.5 miles a decision is required.  Today I went to the right following the Ponderosa Loop counter-clockwise.  After a very short distance I took another right onto the Wild Turkey Trail.  The flow of the singletrack on this section of the trail is awesome. There are just enough rock obstacles to keep it interesting.  The Picture Rock Trail intersects the Wild Turkey trail.  This can be taken to connect to Hall Ranch another popular trail.  Today I kept going on Wild Turkey which eventually winds around to an overlook.  From this vantage point you can see Hall Ranch.  At the overlook the Wild Turkey Trail intersects the top of the Ponderosa Loop.  Going to the right, counter-clockwise, the trail will be somewhat rockier.  Today I went to the right.  This climbs a short distance passing through multiple rock gardens; again all very rideable.  This will ultimately wind back down to Wapiti Trial (1st decision point).  At this point, I continued riding the Ponderosa Loop back to the overlook at which point I went back down the Wild Turkey trail.  I took this all the back to Wapiti.  I then rode one more loop around Ponderosa before beginning the descent down Wapiti.  The descent down Wapiti is fast and challenging through the rock gardens.  With speed you easily flow over these obstacles.  Although any mistakes can be costly.  See my ride on Strava. 

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