Top 3 Hikes in EagleVail

2012-08-18 15.08.25

Some of Colorado’s best hikes start in the community of EagleVail, in the heart of the Vail Valley. Paulie’s Plunge (aka Stone Creek Trail), Whiskey Creek Trail, and Paulie’s Little Sister

EagleVail is well known for its many outdoor recreation treasures.  Home to a phenomenal 18-hole golf course, a fast-paced par-3 short course and fabulous new pool complex, EagleVail is a treasure trove of outdoor activity in the Vail Valley. One of our finest and best-kept secrets is an extensive trail system throughout the neighborhood and adjacent wilderness areas. These trails extend from the neighborhood up through the forests and meadows around our perimeter, and connect to Beaver Creek, Meadow Mountain and beyond. These top 3 hikes in EagleVail will get your heart pumping and senses satisfied right in your own backyard!

Paulie’s Plunge (aka Stone Creek Trail)

 Beginning at the cul-de-sac at the top of Eagle Drive, on the east end of EagleVail, this is one of the most beloved of EagleVail’s trails. It is one of several routes by which EagleVail connects to the trails of Beaver Creek; this one in particular lands right on the Cinch mountain bike trail at The Beav. From the trailhead, the trail begins as a meandering, relatively flat path through Aspen trees, conifers and low brush- this first mellow part of the trail, about .75 miles, is popular for dog walking. At this point the trail forks: the right fork leads down to the golf course, and in summer does not allow an exit except onto the golf course itself (which does not allow access for hikers). In winter when the course is closed, this makes for a perfect gentle loop back to the neighborhood. The left fork is the continuation of the trail, which begins a low descent through a heavily wooded area full of wildflowers and fauna. About 2/3 of the way along this 2.3-mile hike, the trail crosses rushing Stone Creek via a foot bridge.  After the creek crossing prepare for a dramatic steep climb up the remaining piece of the trail. In reverse, this trail is also a popular downhill bike ride, so be prepared to come across a mountain bike or two en route.  This lands you at Cinch trail in Beaver Creek, and a clearing that allows for incredible vistas of Beaver Creek Village and the lush green Valleys below.

Click here to view the Recreation Quicksheet for this trail complete with directions, a map and more details.

Whiskey Creek Trail

On the far east end of Eagle Vail is the trailhead for the Whiskey Creek Trail. On foot, Whiskey Creek is a lovely, scenic trail through alternating grassy meadows, aspens and evergreens.  The trail originates behind Homestake Peak School, formerly the old Battle Mountain High School and still identified as such on trail maps, on a mellow grade that parallels I-70. It then takes a sharp right to the south beginning the 3.5 mile jaunt toward the intersection with the Meadow Mountain Trail; this 3.5 mile uphill climb connects with Meadow Mountain, and on a bike makes for a fantastic downhill on a loop originating at the Meadow Mountain trailhead.

Click here to view the map of this trail.

Paulie’s Little Sister

This is one of the more intense hikes in Eagle Vail, but is also one of the most breathtaking (no pun intended!) The hike begins at the end of Elk Lane, adjacent to the 15th tee box.  The first part of the hike intersects the Eagle Vail Trail, which meanders along the south perimeter of the Eagle Vail Golf Course and neighborhood. Then the exhilarating work begins: a steep, straight jaunt of about 1200 vertical feet in a 30-minute climb. It is challenging for sure, but the rewards are waiting at the top. A charming string of prayer flags decorates the apex of this first climb, and it frames a dramatic vista of the Eagle Vail valley below. From here, the trail continues at a more gradual pace, and winds through beautiful meadows and wooded segments on a climb toward Beaver Creek. The top of the climb deposits you on a ridgeline overlooking Beaver Creek Mountain and Village from the northeast providing a dramatic vantage point. The entire climb is 1440 vertical, and lasts about 2.5 miles. From here you can turn around for the descent, or continue to where the trail intersects with Beaver Creek’s trail system; head up Cinch to connect with Paulie’s Plunge for an epic 5+ mile Eagle-Vail loop!

Certain of EagleVail’s hiking trails are closed early season for animal migration’ be sure to obey the trail closures and get ready to enjoy the trails!

The community of EagleVail is located in the heart of the Vail Valley, only 5-10 minutes’ drive from Vail and Beaver Creek resorts.  With nearly 2,000 full and part time residents, EagleVail is home to one of the valley’s favorite golf courses, pool and pavilion.  EagleVail – live, play, relax, ENJOY.

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