Introduction to the Intemann Trail
Previously in this series, we’ve profiled almost the entire Intemann Trail, stretching about 7 miles one way from Manitou Springs to the popular Section 16 trailhead. Mountain bikers and runners alike revel in the round trip distance. – a magnificent tour of the forests, meadows and red rocks of the west side of Colorado Springs – while others opt to take the trailer trip, leaving a car parked at a terminus.
If you don’t have the fitness and / or the time, or want to do without the hassle of the car, here we offer a fine and abbreviated introduction to the trail – the westernmost stretch of Manitou.
For this trip we start from the Intemann Trailhead off Ruxton Avenue near Iron Spring (which we don’t recommend tasting, by the way, the clue is in the name). The path begins in serene woods next to the running stream. It soon reaches an access road that goes up to the marked path, which climbs sharply but briefly to a flat ridge.
At the rear is the Manitou slope and unmistakable rock masses called Gog and Magog. The picturesque town lay below, nestled under the Waldo and Williams canyons. A new show seems to be waiting for you at every turn, the first notably being Red Mountain. After a meadow you will come to the trail to this modest summit – a short but strenuous detour if you wish.
Ahead of Intemann, the trees emerge for a magnificent view of the Garden of the Gods. The eastern plains seem to mingle with the sky. Further on, Iron Mountain dominates the view.
Intemann ends at Pawnee Avenue; look to the right and you will see the start of the Iron Mountain trailhead just upstream. The Intemann Trail continues like this. This trip ends by going down the avenue towards the city.
Logbook : 1.1 miles round trip (one way), 250 feet above sea level
Getting There : Try parking at Hiawatha Gardens ($ 1 an hour) in downtown Manitou at 10 Old Man’s Trail, where a free shuttle runs up Ruxton Avenue and descends near Iron Spring.
FOR YOUR INFORMATION: Hiking and mountain biking. Dogs on a leash.
SETH BOSTER, THE GAZETTE