Miles: 3.6 Round trip
Time: 1.5 hours
Trailhead GPS Coordinates: 39° 18.615′N , 108° 42.346′W
Click Here for a BLM North Fruita Desert Map
View Vegetarian_DownUppity in a larger map
The The Vegetarian and Down Uppity trail is located in the North Fruita Desert at the end of 18 road and is actually a culmination of a few different trails. The area is similar to the Tabaguache Trail system located south of Grand Junction due to the fact that you usually have to traverse numerous different trails in order to access any given trail. You can download a map of the North Fruita desert area here.
To access the trail head from 1st and Grand Ave. in Grand Junction you need to travel west on hwy50 for approximately 8.5 miles until you come to 19 road which is on your right. Once on 19 road, travel north for about 7.3 miles until you see O road on your left. Turn here and travel for one mile and turn right onto 18 road. You have to take this round about approach because 18 road does not connect to highway 50. Once on 18 road continue north for about 6.3 miles until you see the first main parking area on your left. The trail head described here is located on the east side of the road.
The trail follows a smaller dry wash as it crosses a sage brush flat area and heads towards a small valley. The beginning portion of the trail is slightly bland in the immediate vicinity but as it continues it gets better.
After about 1.25 miles or so you come to an intersection with the Down_Uppity trail. At this point you need to turn right and begin the slight ascent towards the top of the ridge. I thought this was the best part of the trail due to the opportunity for nice views and the way the trail wove through the trees.
The next 1.5 miles or so finds the trail following along the ridge top and then along the edge of a small canyon or ravine and eventually drops down and connects to the Edge Loop trail. From this point on the trail follows the Edge Loop trail back to the trailhead.