Barr Trail to Pikes Peak, Manitou Springs

#4 of 11 in Trails in El Paso County
Barr Trail is a 13mi trail in the Pike National Forest that begins in Manitou Springs, Colorado and ends at the Pikes Peak summit. The high elevation trail with a long sustained grade is rated more difficult by the U.S. Forest Service. With a 7,800ft elevation gain to reach the summit, the Colorado Springs Convention & Visitors Bureau states that it is an advanced trail and is the most difficult trail in the Pikes Peak region.
It is used for the Pikes Peak Marathon and the Barr Trail Mountain Race. The Pikes Peak Marathon is a round trip from the trailhead to the Pikes Peak and back to the trailhead. The 12.6-mile course for the Barr Trail Mountain Race course starts at the trailhead to Barr Camp and back to the trailhead.
A trail was first created by a prospector in the mid-1800s, but the trail did not allow for travel by burro from Mount Manitou to the summit of Pikes Peak. Beginning in 1914, Fred Barr built the burro trail, with a maximum 12% grade to the top of the peak for his burro train business. Aside from his work on the major portion of the trail, he supervised a crew of ten men for the U.S. Forest Service in 1917 who built the portion of the trail from the top of the Manitou Incline down to Manitou Springs. He hiked the entire trail and made it to the top of Pikes Peak on Christmas Eve, 1918.
Barr Camp was built by Barr between 1922 and 1924. It was used by Barr and his burro train customers for an overnight stay between Manitou Incline and the summit. Staffed by year-round caretakers, the camp continued to provide overnight accommodations for Barr Trail hikers.
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Barr Trail to Pikes Peak Reviews
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  • One of our favorite trails to hike that isn’t far from Colorado Springs is Barr Trail. The entire trail stretches about 13 miles (about 21 kilometers) and has an elevation gain of close to 8,000 feet....  more »
  • This trail leads from the bottom of the Incline, meets the Incline half way, and then again at the top. Half of us went up the trail to the top of the Incline, the other half took the Incline up and.....  more »

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