Chris Mountain Meadow Loop

  • Rating: Easy

  • Distance: 4.4-mile loop

  • Elevation

    • Trailhead: 8050 feet

    • Max: 8250 feet

    • Min: 7930 feet

    • Gain: 375 feet

  • Trailhead Directions: 12.3 miles northwest of Pagosa Springs)

  • Trail Map

  • Road Status: Turkey Springs Road (FR629) Upper Gate

  • Notes: Hike or mountain bike. Non-technical, rolling forested terrain.  

Chris Mountain Meadow Pagosa Springs

Chris Mountain Meadow Pagosa Springs

Chris Mountain Meadow Pagosa Springs

Chris Mountain Meadow Pagosa Springs

Chris Mountain Meadow Pagosa Springs

Chris Mountain Meadow Pagosa Springs

Chris Mountain Meadow Pagosa Springs

Chris Mountain Meadow Pagosa Springs

Chris Mountain Meadow Pagosa Springs

Chris Mountain Meadow Pagosa Springs

Chris Mountain Meadow Pagosa Springs

Chris Mountain Meadow Pagosa Springs

Chris Mountain Meadow Pagosa Springs

Chris Mountain Meadow Pagosa Springs

Chris Mountain Meadow Pagosa Springs

Chris Mountain Meadow Pagosa Springs

Chris Mountain Meadow Pagosa Springs

Chris Mountain Meadow Pagosa Springs

Chris Mountain Meadow Pagosa Springs

Chris Mountain Meadow Pagosa Springs

Chris Mountain Meadow Pagosa Springs

Chris Mountain Meadow Pagosa Springs

Chris Mountain Meadow Pagosa Springs

Chris Mountain Meadow Pagosa Springs

Chris Mountain Meadow Pagosa Springs

Chris Mountain Meadow Pagosa Springs

Located 12.3 miles northwest of Pagosa Springs, the Chris Mountain Meadow Loop is the newest trail in the Turkey Springs Area.  In fact, it's not officially named and has yet to show up on most maps.  This short loop is gently-sloped and flowy, offering great views as it traverses several open meadows below Chris Mountain.  I consider it a destination trail that can extend and enhance other great loops in the area.  It's also a great stand-alone ride for kids and beginners since the trail is gently-sloped and fairly smooth.  

 

The trail begins as an extension of Turkey Spring Trail (301) as it crosses Turkey Spring Road 3.1 miles from Piedra Road.  There's a trail junction almost immediately so take a left to do the loop clockwise, which is the best direction to ride in order to take advantage of the flowy, banked corners on the big downhill section.  After about 0.2 miles, cross a road that deadends at the Circle T Cabin.  After 1 mile, you'll cross a cattle guard and the forest transitions from ponderosa pine to mixed conifer and aspen due to the shade cast by Chris Mountain.  Ride the old roadbed and gradually climb to the high point at mile 1.9.  There is a short horseshoe trail off to the left that climbs a bit higher and offers some switchbacks, and then re-joins the main trail at the high point.  Once you reach the high point, the fun begins!  You'll enjoy the best flowy downhill section in the area.  It also offers the area's the best view of Pagosa Peak as the trail crosses a couple of open meadows.   

 

You'll pass under some stately ponderosa pines before reaching the valley floor after 3.1 miles and contour toward a stock pond at the base of the scenic Chris Mountain Meadow.  At the pond, the trail joins an old road for about 100 feet.  Climb the short, steep rocky section to the trail sign on your left, which is the terminus of the Turkey Springs Trail. Proceed on the Turkey Springs singletrack and you're less than a mile from completing the loop, but it's mostly uphill with one steep section.     

 
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