K Trails 1 Through 10

McInnis Canyons Hiking

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 K Trails 1 Through 10

Date: 1/26/2015
Difficulty: Moderate
Miles: 4.4 Round Trip
Rating: 3halfstar
Type: Loop
Time: 2 hrs
Trailhead GPS Coordinates:  39° 8.110’N , 108° 44.317’W
TrailSpecs
DevilsCanyonTrail Map
VirtualHike


 

KTrails1Thru10_1The “K” Trails System is a labyrinth of spider webbed trails that are located in the McInnis Canyons Conservation Area just south of Fruita Colorado. With the exception of the Rattlesnake Arches Trail there are four different trail systems located in this area. Each system is labeled according to which canyon they are closest to. The “K” trails as in this post are for Kodels Canyon, the “D” trails are Devils Canyon, “F” trails are Flume Canyon and then the “P” trails are Pollock Bench. I have yet to decode the rhyme or reason for the labeling of the routes in this area, especially the “K” trails. It is almost like someone put a bunch a numbers in a can, shook it then dumped them out on a map and labeled each trail according to where the number fell. You can download a map of the Devils Canyon Trail System Here.

There are two ways to access the “K” trails, one is starting from the Devils Canyon trailhead and KTrails1Thru10_2the other is from the trailhead about 1.5 miles south of Fruita and just off of Hwy 340 or Broadway on the west side. The Hwy 340 trailhead is just a small pull off with just a few places to park.

The trail begins by climbing the small hill then dropping off the other side into a little ravine area. The trail crosses a small usually dry creek bed but there was evidence of some pretty strong and deep water running through it not too long ago.

KTrails1Thru10_4As you climb out of the ravine the trail meanders through a good size open area with grass and short weeds. Once you reach the trail marker I turned right and followed the trail as it made its way towards the Opal Hill area. The trail drops down into another wash with a K2 marker in the bottom, I continued straight until I came to a small information sign and the K6 marker.

Once on the K6 trail the route follows the base of the hill as it dips and climbs out of a number of small gullies and heads towards the K8 trail section.

Turn left on the K8 trail and follow it as it climbs once again and follows the edge of the ridge. KTrails1Thru10_24This was my favorite section of the trail due to the red sandstone features and the nice views all around. To the west and below you can see the maze of trails that make up the “D” trail system along with a slight view of Devils Canyon. The K8 section of the trail contains the highest point of the hike.

Once at the top the trail makes a slight u-turn and follows the rim of a small canyon as it makes its way down to the K4 section of the trail. Stay on the K4 trail as it crosses the meadow of weeds and grass again and ultimately drops down into a shallow ravine.

KTrails1Thru10_36Shortly after the trail drops down into the ravine keep an eye out on your left and you’ll spot what looks like some sort of old hunting blind or lookout under a little overhang. I don’t know if it’s a legitimate indian blind or something that was built later on in time but it’s still pretty cool nonetheless.

The trail continues following the creek bed as it makes its way back towards the trailhead. Once again keep an eye out on your right this time and you will see a round rock structure just a few yards up the side of the hill. I’m not sure what it originally was but have heard or read that it is the remains of Mr. Kodels kiln. It would be awesome to know for sure so if anyone has any ideas feel free to contact me via the contact form.

From here the trail continues following the wash for a ways then climbs out and travels to the KTrails1Thru10_40top of the hill where it is just a short jaunt back to the trailhead.

This is a pretty neat area that gets used pretty heavily all year around. There is some great scenery but I have never seen much wildlife. Even though there are so many trails in so many directions they all basically lead back to one of the two trailheads so the possibilities of mixing the routes around are nearly endless offering a different hike each time.

 

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