Updated October 2004.
It is quite possible to hike the entire western edge of the Dolly Sods area using the following route.
The closed FR 80 continues as a jeep trail traveling level to the east of the Timberline Ski area, until it reaches the trail heads of the Blackbird Knob Trail, Breathed Mountain, and Big Stonecoal Run Trails. Breathed Mountain and Big Stonecoal Run trails lead into the Red Creek canyon area. Blackbird Knob Trail continues on the old road leading north. There are two, very large, informational signs at the trailhead.
As you proceed north from Blackbird Knob Trail, Rocky Ridge Trail moves out into the open and passes Harmon Trail (No. 525) which is a boulder strewn path. The jeep road crests Harmon Knob and then continues down to a saddle where Dobbin Grade (No. 526) continues on what appears to be the main path.
Rocky Ridge Trail turns to the left along a minor jeep road and cuts left off the old jeep road shortly thereafter becoming a narrow path with plentiful cairns. The trail generally remains on the ridge, but moves back and forth from one side of the ridge to the other several times. Remember the cairns may or may not be on the actual trail or where needed for corners or points of confusion. Rocky Ridge Trail continues to the northern edge of the Forest Service property. As of October 2004, continue onto the jeep road on private property to connect with Raven Ridge Trail (No. 521). The Forest Service will be building a extension to Raven Ridge Trail on FS property paralleling the jeep road. This will generally follow the FS pink/red boundary markers along Raven Ridge.
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