Starting at the east parking lot of Green Mountain, this route is a mountainous loop entirely on trails.
This run isn’t for the faint of heart. Starting at the parking lot off Alameda Parkway on the east side of Green Mountain, the run first rolls gently for a few miles. You’ll run along the well-groomed Green Mountain Trail for the first mile. At the cross roads of Rooney Valley Trail and Green Mountain Trail, you’ll turn right and head up the mountain for what will be one of many moderate climbs.
This is where the more challenging trail running will begin. Along Rooney Valley Trail, you’ll endure some fairly steep hills, as the route rolls gradually upwards. Near the 2.5 mile marker, you’ll reach a fork in the road at Rooney Valley Trail & Rooney Valley Trail (Sure, this is a little confusing), make sure you hang a right, and continue running uphill. Prepare for your lungs and quads to catch fire, from here the route has its’ first long climb. In the next 1.4 miles, you’ll climb nearly 530 feet to the Green Mountain Peak, at 6,810 feet.
On a clear day on top of Green Mountain, you’ll be able to see Denver, Pikes Peak, Long Peak, the Flatirons of Boulder, and even the Denver Airport.
Now the runs gets easier. Despite being near 7,000 feet, all of the major climbs are behind you now. You’ll head back on the gravel road, heading south towards the tower. In the next mile, you’ll descend 600 feet. After passing 5 miles, you’ll be able to see the parking lot as you scramble down the mountain, as you drop 200 feet in half a mile where the run ends, back in the parking lot.
To watch a fly-over of the course, download the Google Earth plugin if prompted.
What are some of your favorite local runs? Let us know and we will post it up for all to see!