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Date: 11/12/2012
Difficulty: Moderate
Miles: Approx 4.4 Round Trip
Rating: 3halfstar
Time: 2 hrs 15min
Trail Head GPS Coordinates: 39° 0.089’N , 108° 36.335’W
Third Flats

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The Twist-N-Shout trail is located South of Grand Junction and is part of the “Third Flats ATV Trail System” located along the East side of Little Park Road. To access the trailhead from 1st and Grand in Grand Junction travel West on Broadway for approximately .87 miles until you reach Monument Road. Turn left and travel another .17 miles to D Road, turn left here and follow D Road until it turns into Rosevale Road. Continue on Rosevale Road for another 1.2 miles until you reach Little Park Road on your right. Turn onto Little Park road and follow it for about 4.1 miles. The trail head is located at the second actual road on your left. If you pull into the area you will notice signs indicating that there is no parking. There is a pull off shortly before the trailhead on your right where I parked and it was a short walk up Little Park Road to the trail. If you have a higher clearance vehicle you can drive past the Kiosk and park along the road a little farther in.

The trail begins by passing through the metal poles and follows a gradual descent towards town. Basically the trail circles around the small hill that is persistently on your right. There are very few steep climbs but the trail does cross a few washes and gullies which makes it a little interesting.

If you begin tracking your miles from the parking area on the west side of Little Park Road you will come to your first “Y” in the trail around .8 miles. You want to bear to the left at this point; the right hand trail is the “Short Shot” trail that connects into the Nut-N-2-It trail. If you want a short hike you can take this route which brings you back to the Third Flats Road. I of course took the left fork.

At this point the trail slowly begins winding its way towards the east. Right around the 1.6 mile mark you will come to the second fork in the trail. At this point you want to continue on the left trail, if you turn right you will be on the “Nut-N-2-It” trail which leads back to the Third Flats Road also. You can take it for a slightly longer hike if you don’t do the entire Twist-N-Shout loop. Once again I continued left.

This area of the trail follows along the ridge line as it passes through some small meadow type areas and some great views of the valley, Bookcliffs and Grand Mesa. At this point the trail turns back towards a south easterly direction until you come to the “Butterknife” trail on your left. This trail is approximately 2.25 miles from the start. You can take that trail if you want a REALLY long hike, I didn’t.

Immediately after the Butterknife trail you will pass through a small slickrock area. The trail is easy to follow through here due to the rock cairns and you can also tell easily where the traffic goes. Shortly after the slickrock area the trail drops a little and you come to the fourth and final branch in the trail. At about 2.45 mile mark you will see the Rocky Stumble trail on your left. This is a short little trail that drops down a little farther and connects to the Third Flats Road a little farther down. This was the area that I ran across some fresh cat tracks. I’m not sure if they were bobcat or mountain lion but my “point man” heeler decided to follow close on my heels in this area, once past this spot she took her role again and headed out front. It’s always good if you hike alone to carry some type of protection, I have my walking stick and a heavy duty can of bear spray that will deter most anything. Depending on the area I often carry a little more protection.

At about the 2.65 mile mark the trail connects back with the Third Flats Road and begins its long steady climb back to the trail head. There are numerous offshoots along the road that takes you to other trails but as long as you stay on the main road and follow the signs you will have no problems finding the way back. This section of the trail was probably the most strenuous due to the consistently gradual and some not so gradual uphill sections.

Overall I really enjoyed this trail; it was just about the right length for a morning hike and wasn’t so strenuous that I was worn out but offered some decent exercise. I would surely recommend this trail.


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