Added by Kyle Aiton
Beautiful 360 degree views of the Sawatch and Gore Mountain RangesIf camping, low light pollution for amazing night sky views and photographyGreat opportunity for wildlife viewing and huntingNo designated trail, so you can make the hike as long or as short as you like
Depending where you choose to access the Hardscrabble area from, this can be a fairly easy day hike or an overnight camping trip. If looking for a shorter day hike, access the Hardscrabble area by way of Hardscrabble Mountain Rd. From the town of Eagle, head South on Sylvan Lake Rd. In 5 miles, take a right onto Hardscrabble Mt Rd, a dirt road. This road is about 45 miles long and can take you to many different trail access points around the Eagle Open Space, and all the way to Sylvan Lake if you choose to drive it all the way. Stay straight on this road for about 20 minutes, and you will reach near the top of Hardscrabble area, and can park anywhere off the side of the road to access the ridge line.
There is a total elevation gain of about 3,500 ft, going from 6,500 in Eagle to around 10,000 at the top. If hunting, there are many great vantage points from the top to search for deer or elk, as well as a wooded ridge line to walk for stirring up grouse. Late September - early October is the best time to access this area to see the vast array of Aspens changing colors. Don't forget to bring your binoculars. This area is very isolated and has incredible views anywhere you choose to wander.
If looking to do an extended hike or incorporate mountain biking, you can access the same area from the town of Eagle at trail heads located off Fourth of July Rd and Abram's Creek. There are over 40 miles of single track mountain biking trails in the Eagle Open Space. From the Pipeline trail, you can begin to backpack your way up towards Hardscrabble mountain. There are no designated trails from this point on.
Once you are done with your hike or camping trip, treat yourself to a bite to eat and a delicious micro brew in the small mountain town of Eagle at Bonfire Brewery
- Camping gear if staying overnight
- Plenty of water (no water source up top)
- Necessary equipment if hunting
- Binoculars (for viewing vast array of wildlife)
- Hiking boots and brush gear (for walking through dense forest)
- Camera for capturing amazing views and wildlife
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