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Old 04-30-2012, 12:24 PM
 
1,140 posts, read 1,156,155 times
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I've visited Colorado Springs before, and was impressed with the various trails they had for hiking. Everything from the Manitou Incline to the Garden of God was easily accessible.

It also seemed that a large portion of hiking in Colorado Springs was done on Pike's Peak and Cheyenne Mountain which afforded plenty of shade and great views.

Is this also the case with trails around Fort Collins?

Does Fort Collins compare favorably with the Springs?

Thanks in advance.
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Old 04-30-2012, 01:04 PM
 
Location: We_tside PNW (Columbia Gorge) / CO / SA TX / Thailand
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Actually quite similar and extensive local hiking, with the exception that CoS is closer to bigger Mtns, and Ft Collins terrain is more arid.

http://www.co.larimer.co.us/parks/trails.pdf
I spent my first 25 yrs living here (MUCH less hiking pressure in the 1960s...but daily rode my horses here)
Parks and Open Lands - Devil's Backbone
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Old 04-30-2012, 01:32 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by StealthRabbit View Post
Actually quite similar and extensive local hiking, with the exception that CoS is closer to bigger Mtns, and Ft Collins terrain is more arid.

http://www.co.larimer.co.us/parks/trails.pdf
I spent my first 25 yrs living here (MUCH less hiking pressure in the 1960s...but daily rode my horses here)
Parks and Open Lands - Devil's Backbone
I appreciate the response. I'm surprised it's more arid, considering it's further north and appears to have far more reservoirs and lakes. I'm assuming that most of the lakes are man made though.

Last edited by Del Boy; 04-30-2012 at 02:21 PM..
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Old 04-30-2012, 03:34 PM
 
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Colorado Springs has better hiking, hands down. I mean, Pikes Peak is right there in the city's backyeard. The mountains are further west from Ft. Collins and not as big as PIkes Peak.

You're right the reservoirs are manmade, and their presense has no impact on the dryness of the local climate. The reason Colorado Springs has more precipitation is that that it has more terrain which causes winds to travel uphill, which enhances precipitation. Just to the north of Colorado Springs is the east-west oriented Monument Ridge divide between the Arkansas R. and Platte R. basins. This terrain feature is wet enough to have pine trees & forests.
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Old 04-30-2012, 04:28 PM
 
Location: Northern Colorado
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The options directly from town are probably better in the Springs. There are lots of good trails near Fort Collins, but you don't get the elevation gain close to town in Fort Collins like you do in Colorado Springs. Colorado Springs is roughly 1100' higher than Fort Collins, so will be a bit cooler. While the trails in the Fort Collins area are good, I find myself hiking and biking early in the morning during the summer to avoid the heat. Estes Park and Rocky Mountain National Park are only 40 minutes away, so that is another option.

Good luck!
Mike Weber
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Old 05-01-2012, 08:51 AM
 
Location: Nutmeg State
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I've lived in both cities, and I agree that the Springs has better in or next to town hiking. But I really preferred the Fort for easy access to national forest lands. All trails up the Poudre just don't seem as busy as near the Springs, and the options are really endless once you're in the forest.

In reality, I don't think either is a bad choice at all.
Now if you're looking for more than just hiking, that's a whole different debate, as the springs and FoCo are VERY different cities.
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Old 05-01-2012, 09:52 AM
 
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Originally Posted by davemess10 View Post
I've lived in both cities, and I agree that the Springs has better in or next to town hiking. But I really preferred the Fort for easy access to national forest lands. All trails up the Poudre just don't seem as busy as near the Springs, and the options are really endless once you're in the forest.

In reality, I don't think either is a bad choice at all.
Now if you're looking for more than just hiking, that's a whole different debate, as the springs and FoCo are VERY different cities.
I really do appreciate everyone's response. You've all been very helpful and considerate.
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Old 05-04-2012, 09:17 PM
 
Location: Raleigh, NC
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I'm glad I'm not the only one that thinks this way. If I ever move out to CO I'll be judging which large metro area to move to by hiking and biking options above all else! I did a brief visit to both CO Springs and Ft Collins. That route 24 does quickly take you to a lot of trails near Pikes Peak. I do think the larger mountains also offer more climate zones, making hiking more interesting.
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Old 05-05-2012, 12:04 AM
 
Location: Nutmeg State
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Originally Posted by captainbob2 View Post
I'm glad I'm not the only one that thinks this way. If I ever move out to CO I'll be judging which large metro area to move to by hiking and biking options above all else!
I would be careful with this. I moved to Colorado specifically for sports, so I"m not downplaying hiking and biking. But the Fort and the Springs are VERY different towns politically, socially, economically, government-wise. They both have great opportunities for a wide variety of outdoor sports, but you have to remember you're going to be doing more than just ride and hike.

Between the two:
Mountain biking- The Springs (although the trails are further from town due to the sprawl)
Road biking- Toss up, both have great climbs, the Fort is much easier to get out of town fast and onto empty farm roads.
Track cycling- The Springs. Only one of these towns has a velodrome and a world class one at that!
Biking culture- The Fort, hands down! Awesome cycling scene there.
Bike Trails/Paths- The Fort, easily. Great trail system in town linking many of the parks.
Hiking- Toss up
Trail running- Toss up, again closer access in the Fort
Rock Climbing- The Fort. Horsetooth is pretty famous
Kayaking- The Fort, the Poudre is quite solid, and the Springs doesn't have very much comparable
Skiing- Toss Up, both are pretty far from major resorts. I'm more familiar with backcountry near the Fort, and it's pretty good, even though it's a bit of a drive.
Camping- Toss up.
Car Camping- The Fort, better access with more backroads off the Poudre Canyon.
General Scenery- The Springs. Magnificent views.
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Old 05-05-2012, 12:27 AM
 
Location: We_tside PNW (Columbia Gorge) / CO / SA TX / Thailand
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If outdoors plays a big roll, look to options in nearby WY (if looking at FC. and options in SO CO if considering CoS)

I really prefer WY, but they don''t appreciate the 'greenies' (colorado plates) anymore than CO or NM appreciates TX plates.

I agree the two towns are quite different, but both are very nice choices.

Downhill Skiing CoS gets my vote. Much easier / faster to get to the 'usual' CO slopes from CoS (and you avoid DEN traffic that has the same idea)
FC has many XC options nearby, but probably FURTHER mileage than CoS (due to elevation differences)
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