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Royal Arch Trail

Intermediate/Difficult

Trail

0.9 mile 1.4 kilometer point to point
Intermediate/Difficult

Elevation

Ascent: 905' 276 m
Descent: -105' -32 m
High: 6,896' 2,102 m
Low: 6,096' 1,858 m

Grade

Avg Grade: 22% (12°)
Max Grade: 60% (31°)

Dogs

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Trail shared by Brian Smith

A technical trail that rewards with great views and a natural arch.

Brian Smith

Features Birding · Cave · Fall Colors · River/Creek · Views · Wildflowers · Wildlife

Description

From its inception at the end of Bluebell Road, Royal Arch Trail starts climbing to the southwest at the bottom of a drainage. This trail is rocky and becomes steadily more technical as it ascends. Soon after starting out, the Flatirons Loop will branch off to the right. At about the halfway point, things get a little steeper and more difficult. Loose rocks, tight switchbacks and areas of built steps will have your legs working hard.

Eventually, you'll reach a sort of false summit just to the south of the third flatiron. Take in the views of boulder and the surrounding sandstone formations for a moment and then start the short, somewhat scrambling descent. The trail will level out momentarily as it passes through another drainage before it turns upward once more. This is the final approach to the arch.

Be prepared for more tight switchbacks and big steps. You'll have no doubt in your mind that you've made it once you do - the arch is a spectacular sight. From below the arch, there are great views of Boulder as well as the backside of the third flatiron. This is the terminus of the trail and it must be retraced back down as there are no other trails from this point.

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We need help with the following missing trail information:

Family Friendly, ADA Accessible, Need to Know, Flora & Fauna

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Check-Ins

Sep 7, 2019
Matt Gee
12h 29m
Aug 23, 2019
Xavier Moisant
Aug 18, 2019
John Bliss
With M a and some other trails too — 1h 48m
Aug 15, 2019
Miles Luning
6mi — 3h 00m
Jul 10, 2019
Brittany Perry
0.9mi
Jul 5, 2019
Isabel Robinson
May 12, 2019
Edgar Villeda
Jul 11, 2018
Josh Beute
Amazing walk down 3.3mi

Trail Ratings

  4.4 from 14 votes

#1734

Overall
  4.4 from 14 votes
5 Star
50%
4 Star
43%
3 Star
7%
2 Star
0%
1 Star
0%
Trail Rankings

#205

in Colorado

#1,734

Overall
78 Views Last Month
1,805 Since Jan 11, 2015
Intermediate/Difficult

0%
0%
31%
46%
23%
0%

Photos

Colorado is THIS AWESOME!
Nov 7, 2016 near Boulder, CO
Hiking back down the many steps to the Royal Arch.
Nov 7, 2016 near Boulder, CO
One of the finest “end of the trail” views!
Jan 28, 2018 near Boulder, CO
Royal Arch Trail can be an icy, slippery, awesome adventure after a decent snowstorm.
Jan 2, 2015 near Boulder, CO
Someone thinks this is a great hike.
Nov 7, 2016 near Boulder, CO
One of the best picnic spots in Boulder!
Nov 7, 2016 near Boulder, CO

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