Little Dry Creek Trail

Colorado

Little Dry Creek Trail Facts

States: Colorado
Counties: Adams, Jefferson
Length: 10 miles
Trail end points: Clear Creek Trail at W. 64th Ave. (Westminster) and Alkire St. south of 86th Pkwy. (Arvada)
Trail surfaces: Concrete
Trail category: Greenway/Non-RT
ID: 6505691
Trail activities: Bike, Inline Skating, Wheelchair Accessible, Walking

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Little Dry Creek Trail Description

The Little Dry Creek Trail provides a paved, relatively flat pathway for bikers, walkers and skaters through areas of Westminster and northern Arvada. The tree-lined route follows its namesake, Little Dry Creek, notable for being the site of the first significant gold discovery in Colorado in 1858.

Spanning 10 miles, the trail winds through busy neighborhoods as well as open spaces with some on-street portions. The best views can be found along its northwestern stretch, which passes through several parks, including Little Dry Creek Park, Woodrun Park, Lakecrest Park and Michael Northey Park.

For further exploring, an easy connection to the 20-mile Clear Creek Trail can be made at the trail's eastern tip in Westminster.

Parking and Trail Access

One of the easiest places to park is Wolff Run Park, found midway along the trail, on 76th Avenue at Sheridan Boulevard (1 mile west of the US 287/Federal Boulevard exit off US 36). Parking can also be found at Thompson Elementary School on the Arvada/Westminster border at Harlan Street and 78th Place.

Little Dry Creek Trail Reviews

It's an OK trail with a lot of surface street crossings that link cement paths behind backyards in the Northwest section. Heading east from 76th and Sheridan the path dips down into a concrete channel that carries the creek. The feel is industrial, it's an old urban / housing projects area. You climb back out of the channel around Lowell. This area has been closed for construction for about 4 years, but is nearing completion. You can get through it when they are not actively working, otherwise you will have to detour on surface streets. I recommend it for family walks, only OK for cycling.

I did this trail on a longboard starting at 64th Ave. and Pecos. Not knowing when I started this, from 64th all the way to Powell St. the trail is closed. From 64th to Federal the trail is skateable. Once your at Federal you have to walk through a little construction but once you get through it and navigate through some side streets you'll be good to go to the end of the trail. It does look like most of the construction should be done by summer 2017? Once I was back on the trail I noticed that most of it is slightly up hill which made the return trip nice with minimal pushing. I had an 8-10 mph tail wind all the way back which was great, with no tail wind the ride back to 64th would be pretty slow. The concrete on this path is old but in good shape. That also means the path is not very wide compared to todays standard bike path width. The concrete also has old school expansion joints that were done with a trowel instead of a concrete saw, so it's a little bumpy. If this path had new concrete all the way it would be a great ride and I would give 4 stars. I can't give it 5 stars because once you get to Vance Dr. the path becomes sidewalk skating which totally sucks. Not only that it goes the long way around a big shopping center complex and it can be dangerous. Make life easy, once you get to Vance Dr. head up to 80th Ave. and take 80th all the way to Pomona dr. you'll be happy you did. Once you get through that mess your good to go all the way to the end of the trail. There is one section where you have to walk on a dirt road for about a 1/10 mi. but no big deal. The tail wind is what made this ride super fun. Not sure if I'll ever do it again.

First, as a background, we are not at all familiar with the Denver area but we have enjoyed riding a number of rails-to-trails and greenbelts throughout the country. We started this bike ride near England Park in Westminster near Lowell and 69th Place. Heading towards Arvada, there was an immediate detour due to construction. That wouldn’t be too bad but there were no signs to indicate where to pick up the trail further down the road. We had to stop and ask a local. This lack of signage would hold true for most of the ride.

The trail itself ranged from very narrow in some parts (e.g., 4-5 feet wide), to fairly wide (8-10 feet). The trail winds its way through a number of neighborhoods and parks and crossed a number of low-traffic side streets. Sometimes the transition from trail to street wasn’t very smooth. The trail surface varied from smooth to bumpy with tree roots uplifting the trail in some parts.

We had expected to be able to bike to Standley Lake but probably about a mile from the lake, the trail abruptly ended. We asked locals for directions to the lake but they couldn’t help us. We returned to our start point and had hoped to continue in the opposite direction towards Denver. However, the trail was closed in that direction near England Park due to construction for the light rail.

All in all, the ride was OK but needs more signage and a little TLC.

Accordion

The detour around the closed section of Little Dry Creek Trail's south terminus from the Clear Creek trail is a nightmare. This section of trail has been closed for well over a year and no work appears to be happening. Does anyone know when this is scheduled to reopen?!?

The section closest to Clear Creek for about a mile or two is still under construction. The rest of the trail is pretty good.

I've been exploring different parts of this trail on roller skates while pushing my baby stroller. I did this loop today and really enjoyed it. The hills were gentle and no blind corners, 2 very important things! Though I wouldn't recommend taking the narrow sidewalk (on skates with a stroller) around the lake at Meadow Glen Park.

Currently there are a few sections of this trail under construction probably due to the September 2013 flooding. 4/19/14

Great family outing trail. Gradual uphill as you go west. Scenic and enjoyable. Lots of variety of scenery.

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