CCC Trail

Round Trip Distance: 1.6 miles
Difficulty: Moderate
Elevation: 6133 - 6546 feet
Cellphone: 3-5 bars
Time: 1 hr.
Trailhead: Monument Canyon
Fee: $5 individual - $15 vehicle - $40 annual pass
Attractions: Scenic views, historic trail, wildlife, wildflowers

The CCC trail is located on the Colorado National Monument across Rim Rock Drive from the Monument Canyon trailhead. The trail stretches from Rim Rock Drive, for about 3/4 of a mile, to the Black Ridge trail. The CCC trail was built by and named after the workers of the Civilian Conservation Corp. There are many great projects that were completed by the CCC between 1930 and 1942 that are still being enjoyed by millions of people today.

The CCC trail is pretty much all uphill from Rim Rock drive to the Black Ridge trail. With an elevation gain of just over 400 feet compacted into 3/4 of a mile you can look forward to getting a nice workout in a short period of time. If you like trail running then the CCC trail might be a good option to through into your normal mix of trails. You can, of course, add more distance by including any length of the Black Ridge trail to get just the workout you are looking for.

The amount of labor put into the creation of the trail becomes apparent once you begin climbing the rock steps that form several sections of the trail.

The trail levels off in a few places.

There are two sections of the trail that are steeper than the rest.

Both steep sections are pretty short and don't seem to take much of a toll on the body. They might be enough to make a person break a sweat though.

The CCC trail meets the Black Ridge trail where there is a sign indicating that the Liberty Cap trail is 2 miles to the left and the Visitor Center is 3.5 miles to the right. I have stirred up big horn sheep that were lounging beneath the trees during the summer in this area. Elk can be spotted at times most often in the colder months.

It's all downhill for the return trip. The views of the monument and the surrounding area are a nice treat for all the effort.

There are a variety of wildflowers that are best enjoyed between March and June with some varieties occurring throughout the summer. Besides these Easter Daisies we were treated with bouquets of Indian Paintbrush, Golden Draba, Prairie Phlox and Astragalus.

Back near the trailhead you can see the Coke Ovens rock formation in the upper area of Monument Canyon.

The CCC trail is a key connecting route if you would like to put together a mondo loop by combining the Monument Canyon, CCC, Black Ridge, Liberty Cap and Gold Star trails to make one continuous hike, or run, of about 19 miles. The best direction would probably be counter clockwise starting at the Wildwood trailhead, ascending Liberty Cap to Rim Rock Drive, follow Black Ridge to the CCC trail, descend the Monument Canyon trail, and take the lower section of the Gold Star trail back to the Wildwood trailhead. Sounds like a blast! As far as the CCC trail goes if you would like to see it for yourself then all you have to do is 'Take a hike'.