With the clouds in Boulder starting to brew and darken, the skies to the north were clearing. I drove north from Boulder and found blue skies in Lyons so decided to hike the Eagle Wind Trail at Rabbit Mountain Open Space. The strong winds were blowing west, keeping the clouds at bay, in fact, aside from the wind, the weather was beautiful. As was the view of the storm engulfing Boulder, glad I finished my earlier hike when I did. Adding to the beauty was a dramatic view of Longs and Meeker with snow blowing off the peaks, the photos do not do it justice, wish I had a telephoto lens...
I was able to fit in a 4 mile hike and successfully avoided the snow and rain. Not bad for a March afternoon that I thought was going to be a wash. It just goes to show that in Colorado, you never know how the winds will blow.
Eagle Wind Trail, Rabbit Mountain Open Space
Boulder County Open Space
Date Hiked: March 15, 2014
Distance: 4 mi (RT)
Elevation Gain: 513 ft
Rabbit Mountain Trail Map (Boulder County)
Eagle Wind Trail Map (Google Maps)
Directions: Rabbit Mountain OS is located just east of Lyons. Coming north from Boulder on Hwy 36 make a right on Hwy 66. Look for the Rabbit Mountain sign and make a left (north) on North 55th Street. The trailhead and parking area is at the end of the road. There is no parking fee.
Start the hike by heading up the only trail for about .5 mi. At the trail junction you have three options, follow the dirt road, aka Indian Mesa Trail, turn left onto the Little Thompson Overlook Trail, or turn right onto the Eagle Wind Trail. Although the Little Thompson Overlook is a wonderful hike, this hike describes only the Eagle Wind Trail.
The Eagle Wind Trail skirts the ridge with terrific views of Longs Peak, the north Indian Peaks, and the plains down to Boulder. There are various viewpoints to the right of the trail. The trail itself is relatively flat and traverses the top of the ridge until it loops back in on itself. The loop itself is about 2.5 miles. This hike is a great option for all seasons, especially when you want some elevation gain while still staying east of the foothills.