Elitches

Rating: 
One-way Distance: 1 mile
Difficulty: Moderate
MTB Skill level:
Elevation: 5797 - 6050 feet
Cellphone: 1-4 bars
Time: 30 mins.
Trailhead: Jumbo Mountain
Fee: none
Attractions: Downhill roller




Elitches is one of the trails in the Jumbo Mountain Trails system in Paonia, Colorado. The lower end of the trail begins at the trailhead where it climbs for just over 1 miles up a rollercoaster like ridge coming to an end at the Powerline Road where there is a junction with the Big Man Climb and Slant-N-Dicular trails. Mountain bikers most often ride the trail in the downhill direction just for the pure fun of it.


To get to the trailhead head east on 3rd Street in Paonia and turn left onto Rio Grande Avenue. Follow Rio Grande as it crosses the creek and turns into Pan American Avenue and begins climbing the hill. The trailhead is at the end of Pan American Avenue. There is only room for a handful of vehicles to park at the trailhead but there is additional parking at the bottom of the hill at the Apple Valley Park where there is also a restroom.


This post is beginning at the top of the Elitches trail where it begins off of the Powerline Road at the Tower of Power and following it in the downhill direction.


As the trail starts out it breaks over the ridge and after going only a little over 300 feet it passes the spot where a short spur coming up from the Gully trail connects to it on the left.


From there the trail continues down the crest of the ridge.


The dirt is adobe clay. It packs into a nice surface when it is dry but when it gets soaked with water it creates 10 pound boots and packs onto bike tires to the point where they will hardly turn. Needless to say the trail should be avoided when it gets that wet.


There are a few humps in the ridge along the way.


The elevation profile shows the occasional swell as the trail rolls down the mountain.


This photo shows a few of the rollers looking down the ridge near the middle stretch of the trail.


It never hurts when there is some nice scenery to enjoy while you're at it.


There are 2 or 3 places where unnamed spur trails connect with the Elitches trail. The spurs get quite a bit of traffic from hikers that are walking their dogs in the area to create shorter loops that lead back to the trailhead.


Elitches seems to be a well suited name for the trail. Currently there aren't any trail signs or markers in the area so unless you have a map you likely will be clueless as to what trail you are on yet alone what its name is. A map is especially helpful for seeing what is going on with the different spur trails. Being close to the trailhead the Elitches trail gets a lot of use from both hikers and mountain bikers. If you would like to see it for yourself then all you have to do is grab your bike or 'Take a hike'.