Runway Trail

Rating: 
Round Trip Distance: 2 miles
Difficulty: Easy
Elevation: 4552 - 4726 feet
Cellphone: 1-3 bars
Time: 1 hr.
Trailhead: Runway
Fee: none
Attractions: Scenic views




The Runway Trail is located near the Gateway Canyons Resort in Gateway, Colorado. The trail parallels a dirt landing strip that sits on top of a hill above the resort. Extending up a dry wash that drains a portion of Lumsden Canyon the Runway Trail provides a connecting route between the resort and the Lumsden Loop Trail.


The trailhead is easy to drive past as it is a little overgrown with weeds at present. To get there turn west at the entrance to Gateway Canyons Resort and follow the road around the south side of the resort for about 0.6 miles. The trailhead is on the left immediately past the green gate. There is a marker at the beginning of the trail and a parking sign hanging on the fence. Things change quickly around the resort so don't be surprised to find the trailhead has changed significantly upon visiting.


The first section of the trail is very faint to nonexistent but it is well marked with signs like the one in this picture. Don't be dismayed though because after about a hundred feet or so the trail becomes very well established and easy to follow.


Another trail marker is located just across the road leading up to the airstrip.


The trail follows the side of the hill, just below the runway, as it heads into the Lumsden Canyon drainage. During the months of April and May the area becomes a beautiful garden of wildflowers.


We even found a new wildflower to identify and add to our collection here on the website.


It is apparent that a lot of work had been done to make the trail suitable for mountain bikes.


At one point the trail makes a gentle climb up to the level of the runway but eventually it descends back down and crosses the wash.


After almost 1 mile the trail reaches an end at its junction with the Lumsden Loop Trail. The Cutler Rim Trail is also close to this point a short distance to the left.


And here is a picture of the airport just to show where the Runway Trail got its name.


Heading back to the trailhead there are good views of the 'Palisade' that looms high above the town of Gateway.


This picture gives a good view of the current conditions of the parking area. The resort is currently expanding their living quarters near the trailhead. When that project is finished the trailhead might undergo some changes of its own. Once you get past the first 100 feet of the trail it becomes a good candidate for a family hike. Portions of the wash are very scenic and would be fun to explore. If you would like to see it for yourself then all you have to do is 'Take a hike'.