Outer Edge

Round Trip Distance: 0.48 km
Difficulty: Moderate
MTB Skill level:
Elevation: 9576 - 9610 feet
Cellphone: 0-3 bars
Time: 30 mins.
Trailhead: Priest Lake Nordic Trails
Fee: $15 donation
Attractions: Groomed trail

The Outer Edge is located in the Priest Lake Nordic Trails area near Telluride, Colorado. The unmarked trail begins and ends off of the Inside Loop on the west side of Priest Lake. Whether the trail is simply an alternate route for the also currently unmarked Inside Loop or a separate trail all by itself is something that we aren't sure of. We calling the trail the Outside Edge in order to describe it separately from the Inside Loop.

This post begins at the north end of the trail where it branches off of the Inside Loop.

The trail has a slight uphill pitch to it as it heads away from the Inside Loop.

As the trail enters the forest the grade increases slightly.

The climb continues to be relatively gentle but it is steep enough and long enough to make you realize that it is probably a whole lot funner going in the opposite direction.

After passing a makeshift brush shelter a few turns come up and before long the trail reaches the crest of the hill. Looking at the downhill stretch that lies ahead it becomes apparent that the trail has uphill stretches in both directions.

A short spur trail comes up on the left that takes a shortcut to the Inside Loop as the trail starts down the hill.

The downhill continues after passing the spur although the slope is less than it was when the trail first popped over the hill.

It all comes to an end at a bend in the Inside Loop trail.

Since the storm was letting up and the sun was trying to shine we opted to turn around and hit the trail again in the other direction.

The downhill section of the trail heading back didn't seem as steep going in this direction. The groomed trail beneath the fresh snow had a thin layer of ice on it which made it easier to speed down the classic tracks.

This was only our second trip to the Priest Lake Nordic Trails area. We were working off a map that we printed out from their website that had the Inside Loop trail labeled on it. Their map is well made and supplements the trail maps that you will find at most of the major intersection quite well. As habit dictates we went ahead and made our own map using the GPS files that we recorded while doing the trails. If you download the GPS file at the top of this page you will find that it is a combination of all the trails in one file. That way you can load it onto your device and always know right where you are at all times in comparison to the other trails in the area. If you would like to see it for yourself then all you have to do is 'Take a hike'.