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Switzerland Trail

Darby's Favorite Reasons to Love this Hike:

  1. The views from this old railroad route are of the spectacular Boulder peaks, just west of the city. Views of the eastern plains, Indian Peaks Wilderness to the west, and Rocky Mountain National Park to the north.

  2. Relatively flat, until Four Mile Canyon Drive (CR118) where it descends to 7700ft, crosses the road and goes back up to Left Hand Canyon to Gold Hill 9000ft. Total route is 14.3 miles, but you can go out at back to the length you want. We did a total of 3 miles, about 90 minutes, starting at the Switzerland Sugarloaf trail head and going west.

  3. Share the trail with other doggies, runners, all types of bikes, ATVs, and 4x4's. We went on Thanksgiving day and only saw one 4x4 jeep. The weekends are a busier time, so plan your doggy walk accordingly.

  4. Walk to the summit of the Sugarloaf Mountain (1 mile each way) for incredible, unobstructed views. This trail head can be accessed from the right side of the parking lot.

  5. The Switzerland Trail (National Forest System Road 327), once transported people, mining ore, and supplies through the hill towns to the city of Boulder from 1883-1919. The railroad line was previously operated by the Greeley, Salt Lake and Pacific Railway, the Colorado and Northwestern Railroad and the Denver, Boulder and Western Railroad. It is registered to the National Register of Historic Places as the Denver, Boulder and Western Railway Historic District.


Elevation: 7700-9000

Skill level: Easy. It's flat, but rocky

Bathrooms: No

Dog regulations: On leash only

Bikes: yes; Horses: no; ATVs and 4x4s: yes


Directions: I've found 3 places to access a trail head for Switzerland Trail: At the Sugarloaf Mountain Trailhead (we went here); North of Nederland, on Co 72 (38000 CO-72, Nederland, CO 80466), or 2.5 miles outside of Gold Hill, on CO52

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