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New Santa Fe Trail

We love the New Santa Fe trail on days when we want to get in some distance, but we don't want steep hills or a technically difficult trail. A great choice for recovery runs, the trail runs a little over 15 miles north from the Air Force Academy through the town of Monument to Palmer Lake. Get on the trail at one of four trailheads: at Baptist Road and I-25, on 3rd Street in Monument, just north of Monument from Highway 105, or at Palmer Lake.

The trail itself is a wide gravel path that averages a gentle 2% grade, mostly uphill as you go north.  Plan on sharing it with mountain bikers, equestrians, and families out for a hike.

Water and restroom facilities are available at the Baptist Road, Monument, and Palmer Lake trailheads during the warmer months. When there's snow on the ground, these amenities are closed.

The well-groomed trail does not offer the same challenges as a more natural mountain trail, but the trail runs through pine and scrub oak, and offers views of red sandstone Elephant Rock a mile or so south of Palmer Lake.

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