Corkscrew Trail: A stair-climber’s dream in Grand Junction |

Corkscrew Trail: A stair-climber’s dream in Grand Junction

Caitlin Row
Caitlin Row | Free Press

Warning, folks! Corkscrew Trail Loop, part of Colorado National Monument’s Liberty Cap trail system, is not for the faint-hearted.

Its lung- (and leg-) busting ups, combined with a serpentine descent makes for an eventful 90-plus minutes. For some more interested in a leisurely hike, it may take upward of two hours.

But, it’s quick, gorgeous and covered in cacti. One more big rain and I expect these flowering succulents to be exploding with blooms!

According to the National Park Service, John Otto created Corkscrew in 1909.

I both cursed and thanked Otto vocally throughout this short hike (a little more than three miles), as I was glad for the beautiful views along the upper ridge but was left panting all the way up.

Here’s a tip for the hike: Start the hike counter-clockwise, taking the first part of Liberty Cap uphill for about a mile, and then connect with Corkscrew to go down. It’s a shorter uphill this way.

Support Local Journalism