Round Trip Distance: 4.3 miles
Elevation: 4692 - 4899 feet
Cellphone: 2-5 bars
Usage: Hiking - Biking - Dogs
Time: 1 hr. 45 mins.
Facilities: Vault toilet
Fee: none (donations appreciated)
View Miramonte Rim in a larger map
The Miramonte Rim trail is located in the Tabeguache Lunch Loop Trail System just off Monument Road in the Redlands area of Grand Junction. Miramonte is located about 1 mile from the Tabeguache trailhead. While there are several good routes that will get you to the Miramonte Rim trail this hike takes what is probably the shortest and most direct route available.
The Lunch Loop Trail System is located on BLM land and is managed in cooperation with the City of Grand Junction and the Colorado Plateau Mountain Bike Trail Association (COPMOBA). To show your support and appreciation for all the hard work put into building and maintaining these world class trails, and others in the area, you can make a donation at the trailhead or on the COPMOBA website.
There are usually some pretty nice trail maps at the trailhead that you can use if you are unfamiliar with the Lunch Loop Trail System. I started out from the trailhead along the Tabeguache trail and within about a half mile I took the right fork where the Tabeguache trail begins to climb out of the wash. From here you can see Bentonite Hill.
At the top of Bentonite Hill the trail runs into Curt's Lane where I followed it to the right.
Within a short distance Curt's Lane ends. I took the left fork and followed the Ali-Ali trail over to Coyote Ridge.
I followed Coyote Ridge to the left. Going straight and adding Ali-Ali Loop to the hike is another option. Ali-Ali Loop rejoins Coyote Ridge just before the Holy Cross junction.
Once on Coyote Ridge I kept hiking straight past the next Ali-Ali Loop junction and the Holy Cross junction. The Coyote Ridge trail becomes Miramonte after it passes the Holy Cross junction. When the trail got to the hill I followed the right fork and followed the Miramonte Rim trail. Here is a link to another hike that follows the Miramonte trail.
The Miramonte Rim trail traverses around the edge of the east side of the hill for a cool mile. All the time you can look down and watch any activity on sections of a few other trails in the valley below. Near the most easterly end of the hill the Clunker Connector trail ties into the Miramonte Rim trail providing another option for taking a different route.
After hiking around the rim for a mile the trail rejoins the Miramonte trail that came around from the other side of the hill. The easiest route would have been to follow the Miramonte trail back to Coyote Ridge and then retrace my steps to the trailhead. Instead I followed the trail that dropped off the hill into the valley to the west. The trail entered private land near the bottom of the hill. Once the trail bottomed out in the wash I followed it to the left and after about a quarter mile it once again entered public land.
I continued on past the junction of the Left Overs trail and followed the wash as it headed mostly south below the rim of Miramonte. Eventually the trail climbed backup to Coyote Ridge where I retraced my steps back to Bentonite Hill.
From the bottom of Bentonite Hill it is only about a hundred yards back to the Tabeguache trail. I really like the uninhabitable look of the badlands area around Bentonite Hill. It looks like a good place to film a movie of an alien world. Kinda like Galaxy Quest which had scenes that were filmed in Goblin Valley State Park in Utah.
The Miramonte Rim trail is a nice short hike that you can do after work. It can be combined with other trails to make up a hike of whatever length you like. It is also suitable for hiking year round. If you would like to see it for yourself then all you have to do is 'Take a hike'.