Friday, October 14, 2011

Trail Running Jones Pass and the Continental Divide Trail

Trail Running Jones Pass And The Continental Divide Trail

There are a lot of good loops that one can run in the mountains, such as the Ruby Creek loop. Right across the valley is the Jones Pass/Continental Divide Loop. Although the first 3.5 miles are on the Jones Pass 4x4 road, if you get an early start there will not be any traffic to worry about. Then, once you are on the Divide, the running becomes spectacular, with open views in all directions and not a person in sight. The loop is around 9+ miles and follows the Continental Divide trail from Jones Pass north over several minor 12,000 foot humps until turning east and dropping down to a saddle at the base of Vasquez Peak. From here, it turns south and skirts Vasquez Peak, until it drops you back down at the URAD Mine/Jones Pass/Butler Gulch parking area. An excellent high-altitude loop for trail running. We banged it out one day a couple weeks ago in under 2 hours. The fall colors were just at their peak.
Tara running along the Continental Divide trail