Palmer Trail is a lovely, pine-strewn singletrack trail that offers sweeping views of Colorado Springs and the eastern plains. From High Park Road, the trail climbs into the mountains and above the city where you can enjoy beautiful views. In the spring you’ll find pasque flowers blooming, and in the summer a bevy of colorful wildflowers dot the hillsides. In any season, crossing Hunter Run creek is a welcome addition to the beauty of the environment, which features towering pine trees and imposing granite outcroppings. After 2.2 miles, Palmer Trail abuts the Section 16 trail and travels downhill.
Section 16 is an intermediate to advanced trail that will lead you down rocky portions, some of which will require careful riding and navigating. You’ll see wonderful views of Red Rock Canyon Open Space and even as far as Garden of the Gods. Toward the bottom, Section 16 intersects with Intemann Trail, allowing hikers to extend their journey. Bikers and other trail users can continue downward into the Red Rock Canyon Open Space trail system to explore the network of trails there. For a roughly 5.5-mile loop, continue on Section 16 until it reaches High Drive, and take the road back to the parking lot. This loop provides over 1,200 feet of elevation gain.