Lunch Line / Eagles ConnectorDate: 11/18/2013
Miles: 3.3 miles
Time: 2 hours
Elevation gain: 887ft
Trailhead GPS Coordinates: 39° 1.531′N , 108° 36.334′W
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The Lunch Line / Eagles Connector combination trails are located within the Lunch Loops portion of the Tabaguache Trail system and is located just south of Grand Junction Colorado. To reach the Eagles Connector Trail I started at the Little Park road trail head and began on the Lunch Line trail, connected up with the Eagles Wing trail then traversed the Eagles Connector trail. The return route had me follow the Tabaguache trail back up to the Eagles Wing trail and back to Little Park Road.
To reach the trail head from 1st and Grand in Grand Junction you need to travel west on Grand Ave. also known as highway 340 for just under 1 mile until you come to Monument Road. From here you will need to turn left onto Monument Road and travel about ¼ miles until you come to Rosevale Road which will be on your left. Follow Rosevale road for about 1.2 miles until you reach Little Park Road. Once on Little Park Road, follow it for about 2.4 miles until you come to a pull off located on your left. The trail head is just across Little Park Road to your west.
The trail begins by gently climbing towards the top where a large outcropping of rock continually watches over you as you climb. If you look across the small valley to your right you will see a shallow cave that looks like it use to be an old campsite. There are a couple old fire pits and some old pallets strewn around.
Once you reach the large rocks at the top the views are amazing. Looking south you can see the Andy’s Loop trail below you and the Ribbon Trial winding up the hill across the way. At this point there is the “Y” in the trail where going right will take you onto the Free Lunch trail and left along the edge is Eagles Wing. The Free Lunch trail is a mountain bike only trail and hiking and horses are not allowed, so you need to bear to the left and continue climbing.
Once at the very top, the trail drops down and back up a small valley then very gradually begins it descent down. Just shortly before you reach the Eagles Connector exit the trail drops of the small ridge at a very steep rate. It’s not bad if you’re walking but I would imagine it would be quite the ride on a bike. Along this section there are some great views of Devils Kitchen and Serpents Trail across the valley on the Monument.
After turning onto the Eagles Connector trail you just continue on it as it follows along the bottom of the small canyon and connects up with the Tabaguache trail. At this point you need to turn right and climb the insanely steep hill known as Widow Makers Hill. As you reach the top there are a couple nice rocks to sit on and enjoy the views of the valley below.
Continue following the Tabaguache Trail until you see the Eagles Wing trail marker on your right. You can either turn here or continue on the Tabaguache trail. Both routes can take you back to where you parked. I turned right onto the Eagles Wing trail and followed it back up to the Lunch Line trail and back to Little Park Road.
Overall this is a great area to hike, it is close to town, there are endless routes you can take and it’s difficult to get lost. I only rated it a 3 ½ star due to the lack of wildlife and/or archeological sites.
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