If your dog is as fit as you are, go ahead and bring your best companion along for the hike — as long as they’re leashed. Drive time: 1 hour and 20 minutes from Denver Located near the eastern base of the Rocky Mountain, Denver is home to some incredible hiking destinations. So pack your day hiking essentials, and get ready to explore the Colorado Front Range. For optimal hiking conditions, visit Lake Isabelle from June to October. Top Denver Hiking Trails: See reviews and photos of hiking trails in Denver, Colorado on Tripadvisor. For families, we love the easy 1.6-mile Bear Creek Trail that runs along the namesake creek. The Mayflower Gulch trailhead sits... St. Mary’s Falls Trail. Note, if there is not a concert going on, you can also pay a visit to the amphitheater itself. The parking lot can fill up, so consider going in the early evening or perhaps near sunset. Start early and keep an eye on the weather. Just west of Denver near Golden, the Chimney Gulch Trail at Windy Saddle Park is a five-mile round trip (out and back, not a loop) trail up the side of Lookout Mountain. Distance: 2.5 miles To hike, you need to set out around 3am so you avoid late afternoon thunderstorms that can be deadly. But when you reach the summit, you are in for absolutely stunning views across the Front Range. It also has some great spots to stop for a picnic lunch along the way. She loves all things photography, film, and poetry. Boulder, Colorado boasts hiking trails that start right in town at Chautauqua Park. My 50-year-old mother — who loves nature but doesn’t hike often — had a wonderful time hiking this trail. When hiking, especially if you’re climbing a 14er, go slow, take deep breaths when needed, and drink plenty of water. And, sure, you can see a lot of gorgeous views from the comfort of your vehicle, but there’s nothing like experiencing the Colorado wilderness on foot. Location: Matthews Winters Park The Barr Trail is a 24-mile round-trip haul, but it is possible to just hike one way and then catch a ride down in a car (there is a road to the summit) or on the historic cog railway that also chugs up and down this iconic mountain. However, the trail is very popular for hikers and mountain bikers, so make sure your four-legged companion is on their best behavior. Drive time: 20 minutes from Denver Enjoy this easy start as the upper portions of the trail are rocky, and you’ll have to watch your footing. If all else fails, there is also limited street parking available. Located about 45 minutes southwest of Denver in Jefferson County, Lair o' the Bear Park is accessed via a beautiful drive into Bear Creek Canyon. Joybeth is a brand new resident of Denver, Colorado, recently graduated from the University of Georgia with degrees in English and Entertainment & Media Studies. There’s a $12 fee (cash only) to enter the area, but if you have a National Parks Pass, entry is free. Drive time: 45 minutes from Denver A free shuttle bus runs from the parking lot to the Bear Lake trailhead during the summer. But if you want a slightly easier hike, ascend the Red Rocks Trail, then descend the Morrison Slide Trail. Denver is one of the hottest urban destinations in America right now, and one if its greatest assets is the easy access to natural attractions like hiking trails. In total, the excursion up and back will take you anywhere from 4 to 8 hours. One accessible area for hiking is the Wild Basin trail network, which offers a range of hikes for all fitness levels. And in the warmer weather, while basking in the beauty, be aware of your surroundings — hikers have spotted rattlesnakes on these trails. This hike is the longest one on the list and features a stunning waterfall. It is a strenuous hike that includes lots of zigzags, as well as stream crossings, as the trail makes its way to the summit of Lookout Mountain-it joins up with the Beaver Brook and Lookout Mountain Trails to do so. For starters, you’ll need a first-aid kit, a headlamp, a trail map, hiking shoes, and plenty of food and water in order to successfully bag your first 14er. Chautauqua Park, in downtown Boulder, hosts dozens of... 3. You’ll need to be prepared to go up a ridge and continue climbing the switchbacks until you get to the other side. If you want solitude, this might not be the best choice. Be aware that there’s a constant change in elevation throughout this hike — pace yourself accordingly. Wild Basin in Rocky Mountain National Park – Wildest Hikes Near Denver. Departing from the Bear Lake Trailhead at 9,475 feet, the trail passes Nymph Lake and Dream Lake with views of Longs Peak in the distance. Distance: 3.8-mile out-and-back When you’re bored there is nothing better than taking a fun day hike from Denver. Take it slow and you’ll be just fine. The trail is not too steep and has very clear signage. And leave your four-legged hiking companion at home for this one. The trail is best between April and October. Along the trail, you will hike alongside peaceful streams and through shaded pine forests. It’s home to a rich and diverse community of wildlife and plant species. Difficulty: Easy Location: Windy Saddle Park Difficulty: Hard Difficulty: Moderate There are picnic tables at the trailhead, and the small visitor center has drinking water and restrooms. Pack your lunch and enough water so that you can stop at the falls in the middle of your hike and enjoy your surroundings. Location: Red Rocks Mountain Park While this mountain just west of Colorado Springs and about 75 miles from Denver is not the easiest 14er to climb it is one of the most impressive-Katharine Bates was inspired to pen America the Beautiful after summiting Pikes Peak. The list includes Mount Elbert, Capitol Peak, San Luis Peak, and others. Starting in the early morning is a great idea for this destination, as it can become extremely crowded. The hike is worth the effort because the views from the top of the mountain show Boulder and surrounding suburbs in panoramic glory. Evans, the Continental Divide, and the city. Leashed dogs are allowed on this trail. If your car isn’t capable, you’ll need to park in the lower lot, which will add 3 miles to your hike. The 10 Best Hiking Trails Near Denver 10. It is about a 90-minute drive from Denver to the Estes Park entrance of the park (Estes Park is also a cute town, with restaurants and accommodation and, in the fall, lots of elk). If you park at the Rooney Lot at Green Mountain, you will have access to temporary restrooms. Dogs are allowed, but they need to be leashed. 11 of the Best, Uncrowded Hikes Near Denver. For the first hour or two, you’ll likely share the trail with a number of people. When hiking in Colorado, be aware that lightning storms that can happen fairly often in the summer months. The best way to avoid altitude sickness is by allowing your body to acclimatize as you gain elevation. For any live updates, you can check out @TrailsLakewood on Twitter. The Eldorado Canyon Trail does have some rocky sections and steeper inclines, all of which are very manageable if you take your time. However, Colorado is home to many open space dog parks. These include Elk Meadows Park, Glendale Open Space Park, and Cherry Creek State Park, to name a few. Sugarloaf Mountain Trail, Roosevelt NF 1.3 miles RT 439 feet elevation gain. ), I settled on Sky Pond. Head south of Denver on I-25 for about 30 minutes to the city of Castle Rock. Our Favorite Hikes Near Denver 1. Follow Storms Pass Trail until you see the sign for Estes Cone Trail. 10 Best Hikes Near Denver, Colorado Green Mountain along with Hayden Trail Loop. FRONT RANGE HIKING TRAILS BY CITY. Discover destinations, find outdoor adventures, follow the journeys of our travel writers around the world, and be inspired. The hike itself is rather long, but the trail remains moderate throughout. Location: William F. Hayden Green Mountain Park Distance: 3.2 miles Distance:  9.7-mile out-and-back Who says you need an entire day to get out into the mountains? (Danika Worthington, The Denver Post) I recently found some old … : while this trail of some wildlife Evergreen is a requested $ 20 honor system donation into box... Through the trees and meadows climb the Rocks than walk past them, Staunton State Park, sunscreen. 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