What is The Northern Incline Trail?
If you love hiking the Manitou Incline in Colorado Springs or you’re visiting the town looking for the latest hike to conquer, you may want to consider checking out the new Northern Incline Trail. The new trail can be found at step 1,300 of the Manitou Incline. With great scenic views, the Northern Incline Trail is considered moderate in difficulty and ideal for hiking and biking. Pet owners will want to be mindful, as dogs are not permitted on this trail.
Why Build A New Trail?
Construction on the Northern Incline Trail began in May 2020 and lasted roughly 8-10 weeks before finally opening to the public. The Timberline TrailCraft crew worked tirelessly to provide our city a new hiking option, and there are trail-goers eager to start using it. The new Colorado Springs trail serves 3 primary purposes:
- Minimizing “trail wandering.” When users go off the designated trail, they inadvertently speed up unnatural erosion which can result in a lack of water in the soil. This means less nutrients to support plant life. The effects of unnatural erosion over time with the traffic we see trekking this area, would mean a less attractive hike for everyone.
- Limiting traffic on the Barr Trail. The Northern Incline Trail will provide a scenic route with views of the mountains and plains while staying less crowded than the Barr Trail.
- Providing an early bailout of the Manitou Incline. The Northern Incline is located at step 1,300 of the Manitou Incline, which is a total climb of 2,744 steps. This provides a great option for those who are first time hikers of The Incline and find such a difficult climb daunting.
Both the Barr Trail and the Northern Incline Trail connect to the Manitou Incline in Colorado Springs, however, the Barr Trail spans 12.6 miles and ascends to Pikes Peak while the Northern Incline Trail is about 1.1 miles and does not have near the elevation gain. The Northern Incline Trail also connects to the Ute Indian Trail which is a segment of Ute Pass Regional Trail for more picturesque views of the city.
The Down & Dirty of the New Trail
The Incline Friends funded the $36,000 project which included planning, development and building costs. The project faced a few hurdles during the trail construction, including the TrailCraft crew moving large boulders and relocating bedrock. Many hikers are excited to take the new alternate path. “It’s a beautiful trail that is designed to be sustainable,” says Bill Beagle, President of Incline Friends. Timberline TrailCraft is proud to build more Colorado Springs trails and serve its community whenever possible. To view other TrailCraft projects, visit our portfolio page.
See For Yourself
Are you excited to see the trail? Below is an aerial view of the Northern Incline Trail, shot by the City of Colorado Springs.