The trail offers some scenic views as you pass through the area and ends in a beautiful meadow along the creek. Combine this with Phantom Sale 1 (FS 363.B)and its a quick hop from Rule Ridge (FS 357) to Manchester. This combo takes you to the Phantom Creek & Signal Butte Loop and that part of the trail system in the South Platte Ranger District area. The trail offers some scenic views as you pass travel through it.
It’s highly recommended that you go all the way to the end of this trail and check out the views. It's never fun to have to turn around, but the views are nice there and worth the short detour on your way through this area.
Turn left at the intersection of Rule Ridge (FS 357) and Rankin (FS 355) just before Manchester (FS 364). Dispersed camping starts 0.2 miles. At 0.5 Miles there is what almost looks like a spur but is not. If you crane your neck just a little and look down the trail you will see a fire ring, as it's just a campsite.
Go north on Manchester Creek Road. After 4.2 Miles of housing, the road turns into forest and trail, you'll see the official trailhead on the left just before Rule Ridge (FS 357)'s entrance further ahead on the right..
Land Use Issues
This area is part of Pike-San Isabel National Forest, and as such is part of the 2011 Lawsuit where a coalition of conservation and recreation groups were suing the U.S. Forest Service over what they say is an illegal addition of 500 miles of motorized roads and trails. A settlement was reached in late 2015 that is requiring the U.S. Forest Service to re-evaluate the roads and create a new travel management plan. 30 roads have been partially or completely closed while this evaluation takes place over the next few years. Those trails affected have been noted here at trailsoffroad.com.
It is imperative that the OHV community makes their voices be heard on this issue. If we do nothing, those 500 miles will be shut down, some already have. Contact the local ranger districts and let them know why the area is important to you and the history you have there. Contact your Congressperson and Senator as well. They know how important the OHV community is to the economy of the state.
First time on this today and it was good. This is one of the more notable trails in this area. It also has more climbs and descents compared to most of the trails in this immediate area. Lots of loose gravel on here, and tight in some spots because of trees very close to the road on both sides. A few areas were very rutted out from side by side traffic. Worked great for me though, my tires fit in the grooves perfectly! No obstacles, just dirt/gravel and rutted out sections.
Jen & JD moved to Colorado from Chicago in May of 2015 for work and brought with them a 2001 stock Jeep Wrangler that had been garage bound for two years. Within a month of arrival, all rusty 170,000 miles of it was shaking on Colorado trails and they've never stopped. As time as gone on, their 2001 TJ has been upgraded and a 2015 Jeep JK has been added to the family.
JD works as a Systems Engineer for a cable company and Jen runs a business from their home during the week to pay the bills. When the weekend hits, they're almost always hitting the trail. When Sunday night rolls around, the question turns to, 'so what's next week?!'.