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Railroad Bed above Manitou Springs

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Hurricane Canyon Natural Area

Railroad Bed above Manitou Springs is a 2.1 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Cascade, Colorado that offers scenic views and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, nature trips, and bird watching and is best used from March until November. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

Distance: 2.1 miles Elevation Gain: 452 feet Route Type: Out & Back

dog friendly

hiking

nature trips

walking

bird watching

rails trails

views

Please note that the parking lot for this trail is closed. Hike along a historic railroad bed through tunnels along a canyon After a brief scramble up some loose tallus to the trail this is a fairly level easy hike. This old railroad bed is falling into disrepair and washouts are beginning to take over. Be sure to hike this before it's gone. It is a wonderful path through history following the abandoned railroad bed above Manitou Springs. Along the way you will pass through 5 tunnels and explore the first half of the sixth. The last half of the sixth tunnel is on private property. A cinderblock wall with a gate will prevent you from going too far. A good flashlight is required for this hike. There is a parking lot right off hwy 24 right before it splits to manitou/Colorado Springs. If you miss it just turn around and go right back around on the hwy- it's a huge parking lot with a creek right next to it (legal) parking and short hike to were you start the journey. You even get to see rainbow falls when you are walking on the side of hwy 24 right off the bridge there is 6 tunnels some so big you need a really high powered light to see.

hiking
off trail
rocky
scramble
washed out
10 days ago

A very hard trail to get to, lots of trash from the homeless community. We slid down the hill closest to the parking lot off of highway 24 at the end of the pass to get back to the car. Very worth it if you appreciate history. I’m a native and I loved seeing the old tunnels for the railroad. Very cool

The trailhead parking has been blocked off with concrete barriers. We will attempt a different entrance

hiking
bridge out
scramble
2 months ago

Difficult to get to. The trailhead parking lot is GONE, so you need to park half a mile down. The trailhead and any access to it is gone. From the lower lot, we hiked up the side of the road to get to where the trail begins, jumped across the water, only getting a little wet, then climbed a scree and weed covered hill that felt like it was straight up. Once on the trail, it was great. Smooth trails, great tunnels, and we went to the end by the homeless camps. My 13 year olds loved it, except for hiking the side of the road. To get back to our car, we slid, and I do mean slid, down the giant scree mountain just above the parking lot. Lots of scrapes and dirt in the shoes, but the kids loved it.

hiking
3 months ago

nice flat trail once you get to it---it's a good steep climb with is loose rock

hiking
off trail
rocky
scramble
10 months ago

such a cool trail with great views over Ute Pass. It can be rather difficult the get to and from the trail but once you get up there it evens out. Right off the bat you will have to cross some shallow rushing water over a large down tree. It's not difficult to get across. It is really neat. However, there's quite a homeless presence, trash, cloths, tents, pee smells, etc. Never came across anyone though.

hiking
11 months ago

I barely started the trail when I walked upon the first tunnel which had a guy pacing back and forth. Does not feel safe even at 2pm. I turned around, because I was by myself.

hiking
Fri May 24 2019

The trail is cool, definitely more trash and homeless campers than beauty. It’s sad to see how this area has been trashed. I don’t think it’s worth the rough climb to start.

hiking
scramble
Sun Feb 03 2019

I wouldn’t recommend this trail. Almost every tunnel had loads of trash and looked like a lot of bums camped out in this area. There was a carcass in the parking lot, the scramble up to the trail is pretty dangerous, and the noise from the highway sucks. We went here looking for something new but it wasn’t worth the time or energy.

hiking
Sat Feb 02 2019

We had to do a few u-turns before we found the trailhead. The climb to the top is lots of loose rock but it’s worth it to walk through all the tunnels. It’s a cool trail that will soon be washed away though. Sections have already slid off, making parts of the trail very sketchy - with a long drop on one side.

Fri Jan 04 2019

Definitely difficult to scramble up the side to the trail. Wouldn’t recommend for children or to do alone. But the tunnels are worth the climb. Sliding down is pretty dangerous coming back.

hiking
Sat Oct 06 2018

I've tried to do this before, but could never find it. With more details I was able to. It was pretty good though it's a bit of a pain to get up to the bed. The point the map suggests requires a 1/2 mile walk along the (VERY NARROW) should of Highway 24. I, instead, scrambled straight up from the parking lot. That was a bit challenging, but I was more afraid of the highway than the loose scree. The tunnels were interesting and some nice views around Manitou.

hiking
Sun Sep 02 2018

accessed the trail from the pull off on Hwy 24. Tough scramble from there to the railroad bed. nice hike along the bed but tons of vehicle noise from Hwy 24 below, hard to even talk over it sometimes. Tunnels were littered with trash, very disappointing. not worth the effort.

hiking
Fri Aug 03 2018

I loved this place. The litter made me sad. But there wasn’t any on the trail just below it in the tent village. And the homeless just stayed to them selves in their tents. The tunnels were amazing. The scramble to the top was awesome. And your HIKING. Just park somewhere in manitou and walk. It’s not bad. One of the tunnels is an obvious place where climbers practice... one of them (Satan’s tunnel) was where satanic temple had secret meetings back in the day supposedly. There were loads of bats in that one. I honestly loved this trail there was adventure- folklore- and scrambling- and a reminder to not take what you have for granted walking past the tent city. And by tent city I mean like a total of 6 or 7 tents.

Sat Apr 07 2018

can someone who has been there message me on how to get there exactly please. cedde5415@homail.com

Thu Feb 08 2018

Also, if you need help getting there feel free to contact me.

hiking
Sat Dec 09 2017

Tunnels alone make this hike worth the trek.

Sat Nov 04 2017

The history of this trail/railroad bed (Colorado Midland Railway) and condition of the tunnels make the scramble up worth it. The hobo camps and disrespectful littering are disheartening, but the mystery of the tunnels and views kept us going. The parking area is to the right just before the first exit to Manitou Springs eastbound on 24. The huge dirt pile is a dead giveaway. Park there, walk east towards the town, cross the creek and scramble up the hill. The path we found was towards our right (west) close to a little hobo town. That landed us in between tunnels 3 and 4. Bring a flashlight!

hiking
Mon May 08 2017

Hello Everyone I was up here March 30th 2017 and it is super easy to access and parking is totally legal if you know we're to park however it is trespassing technically to explore these tunnels but don't be a pussy and just go there is a parking lot right off hwy 24 right before it splits to manitou/Colorado Springs (In 1 Of My Pictures You Can See My Car Where I Parked) if u miss it (like I did) just turn around and go right back around on the hwy it's a huge parking lot with a creek right next to it (legal) parking and short hike to were u start the journey u even get to see rainbow falls when u are walkin on the side of hwy 24 right off the bridge there is 6 tunnels some so big you need a really high powered light to see FYI message me ill take you back there

hiking
Tue May 02 2017

There's no trail head where this map indicates. There's a TINY spot to pull off, but it's not safe. You can't park across the highway in the median, so there's really no way anymore. I'm rather bummed as it looks like a cool place to explore, but you can't get to it. At least with the way this describes to get there. All other ways to get up there look illegal.

Tue Apr 18 2017

For those wondering, this trail is not accessible any more through "legal" means. It used to be possible to park on Highway 24 in the median. This has been changed and it is no longer possible to park there. There are other methods and places to park and access this trail, but you have to be creative and also may risk getting a parking ticket.

hiking
Tue Dec 27 2016

This trail was a complete bust. I searched for about 30 minutes for a trailhead of any short near the stated location and there is NONE. There IS a railroad bed a ways up a steep hill, but there's nowhere nearby to park and no trail. This may be a great hike, but this is definitely NOT where you should start.

Thu Jun 16 2016

This is not a sanctioned trail. It's pretty and has amazing history, but hiking this trail is technically trespassing, so don't expect to see any parking lot or trail maintenance

Sat Jun 11 2016

After doing some research, we found better instructions to the trail head. It seems the parking area has been closed. Probably due to the Waldo canyon fire that shut the other trails up there down. We're going to try walking in maybe next weekend. I'll post again then

Fri Jun 10 2016

The trail head is not marked. The only possible place it could be is behind a locked gate. Very disappointed

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