Restrooms at the trailhead. This parking lot gets very busy on weekends and this area is multi-use, so be prepared to encounter lots of hikers, runners, and other bikers.
Starting from the Rooney trailhead, leave the parking lot and cross the bridge to the start of the trail on your right. At the first fork, choose either trail as they both take you to the same place. After a few rolling hills, you'll come to another junction - stay straight here to continue riding on the Green Mountain Loop
Trail around to the south side.
After about three miles, you'll hit the intersection for the Hayden Trail
... your climb begins here! It starts off steep but eases up a bit soon enough. Stay right at the first intersection to cut across on the Hayden Connector
and meet back up with the Green Mountain Trail
(hint: you can also stay on Green Mountain Trail
the entire time and climb up that trail instead of the Hayden Trail
, but I find this climb to be just slightly easier.)
Turn left on Green Mountain Trail
and finish the short climb up to the top. Just shy of the fire road on the top of the mountain, you'll see a sign for the Summit Loop Trail
off to your right. Take this and wind your way around the mountain. This trail - while relatively easy - is a much better alternative to the steep fire road climb on the main part of the mountain.
Stay on the Summit Loop Trail
for about 2.3 miles until you run into Box o' Rox
. Here is where the real fun begins!
Take a sharp right and begin heading downhill. The upper portion of the trail is rocky, fast, and sometimes a bit loose. The visibility on this part of the trail is great, though, so don't be afraid to let it rip. This is not a directional trail - the preferred direction is downhill - and you'll still encounter uphill riders, so be cautious.
The lower portion of the trail is a bit tighter and has some sharper turns, but is still just as fun. Most of the lower section of the trail is very smooth and well-groomed. There's a fun somewhat-technical section built right into the side of a hill that takes you right alongside 470 before spitting you out into the final rock garden obstacle.
Here, there are several line choices that change occasionally when new features are added. Go for the black diamond line to the left, or take the easier line down on the right and you'll find yourself right back where you started. It's a short cruise back to the TH from here.