Palmer Lake/Monument is located North-West of Colorado Springs. To find our hike, Palmer Lake Lower and Upper Reservoir, you head north up Interstate 25 to Exit 161 and head West into Palmer Lake. After you pass the town sign, you have about three miles. Continue down the main drag for a while. On your left, you will pass Vail Rd; you are going to take the next left onto South Valley Road. Not to far up, you will turn left again on Old Carriage Road. Head down the hill. You will see parking down on the right.
From the parking lot, you will hike about 3/4 mile up to the Palmer Lake Lower Reservoir. The fence is down for a closer look. As you see in my photos, I waited too long in the afternoon and the sun was against me getting a great shot. But the site is something. Do yourself a favor and go to the west side and face east. You can actually see the small 12-inch trout flopping down the stream you have listened to the whole walk up. Of course, you can not see the stream until the LowerReservoir because it is babbling down in the canyon below.
From this point, it is an easy 1-mile up the hill to the Upper Reservoir. Take the extra 1/4-mile walk up the road once you have spotted the reservoir. It is worth it. The road walkeddown the South West end of the reservoir. I saw a few fishers there. I can see why because the trout at the top were pretty good size and were swimming in schools in the shadow of the afternoon sunlight under the trees. Whole lot of fishing could happenup there.
Now, every trail book I have read has said that a 4x4 could go up this road. I strongly discourage it. The weather has torn the road away. The path is good for bikes and hikers but I would not take a truck up there. I took some shots of the weather wash. Even if you could fit through the narrow areas, my concern is with unstable roadsides. The walk down is on the same trail but gives you a whole new look of Palmer Lake and the rock formations that are shadowing the Santa Fe Trail miles away. Overall, a great trail that I will do again. Itís a 3.5 mile round trip with pretty good inclines on a nice trail. I would rate this an easy/moderate.
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