This is a popular trail that takes about 2 hours to complete and although there are hills to climb it isn’t all that hard. 7 km return, 213 m/692 ft elevation gain/loss.
Much of it is covered by a canopy of trees through a nice mature forest and there are some nice viewpoints along the way. At the far end a short trail leads to a lookout to Moose Mountain and the Bobcat trail. Much of the south leg runs along a cliff overlooking the Elbow Valley, the foothills, the Ranger Station and the Elbow River. You can also see large tracts of cleacut slopes on the far side of the river.
The flood of 2013 had a significant impact here. There are new bridges and a lot of repairs to the trail have been done. The trailhead used to be at the east end of the Allen Bill Pond parking, but it has been moved across the road to the north side of Hwy 66, adjacent to the Ranger Station. There is parking for about 15 cars there, but you can also park in the Allen Bill parking lot. A plan released in 2016 proposed a significant expansion and upgrade to the trailhead parking lot. The trail begins near the Ranger Station following a new cleared trail through the forest which leads to the river and hooks up with the original trail. This is actually the Elbow Trail which connects to the West Bragg Creek Recreation Area about 7 kilometres to the north.
The trail is wide enough for two to walk side-by-side. There are a lot of gates along the way to keep the cattle away from the southern leg. The cattle leave a fair amount of poop on the trail, so watch where you walk. The Fullerton Loop begins about .5 km from the point where the trail meets the river. There is a Y-junction. To the right is the Elbow Trail, to the left is the Fullerton Loop. Once on the loop, you can climb the stairs and do the loop clockwise or keep to the right and do the loop counter clockwise. I don’t think it matters, you will climb the same elevation gain either way. The best views are on the southern leg (to the left). I’ve always been a “save the best for the last” kind of person so I go right (counter clockwise).
Bikes and horses aren’t allowed on Fullerton Loop.
The Fullertons own a lot of land in Bragg Creek. Ernest “Jake” Fullerton was among the very first pioneers to settle here about the turn of the 20th Century. He opened a ranch here in 1914. They helped build and supply the fire lookout on Moose Mountain. They hauled logs and coal. Tom Fullerton allowed Mary and Catherine Barclay to build the first Youth Hostel building in Canada on his land in 1934. The previous year they setup a tent a Wake Siah Lodge. Wayne Fullerton was a Rocky View Councillor around the turn of the 21st Century. They have a lot of history here. Mt. Fullerton is named after Jake.