The Best Hiking Trails in Colorado: A Complete Hiking Trail Guide

Colorado has some of the best hiking trails in the world. For beginners to the most expert trails on the planet. Our county open space parks, city parks, state and federal parks span an unbelievable amount of land in Colorado.

  • Outdoor Colorado
  • Hikes Near Denver
  • Hikes Near Boulder
  • Hikes Near Fort Collins

The Importance of Hiking

  • You can’t live without good hiking!

Really? You can’t? Well, I’m here to prove that wrong. Hiking is an important part of Colorado’s outdoor recreation portfolio, providing easy ways to get the most out of our recreational resources. Whether you are looking for a morning workout or a family excursion, Colorado has some of the best places to hike around the world. Here are some of our most popular hikes throughout the state.

  • Devil’s Head Ranch

Located in Parachute, Devil’s Head Ranch was first started by Theodore Roosevelt as a place for visitors to view the Glenwood Canyon. The Ranch was expanded and opened as a state park in 1924 and is home to a lot of hidden trails.

You can easily get to Devil’s Head Ranch by taking a 4-wheel drive tour of the park.

Planning Your Hike

The best way to plan a hike is to talk to someone at your destination about the trails. For example, if you’re going on a 2-day trek and don’t know where you’ll stay the first night, ask someone at the post office. What trails in the area are best suited for first time hikers? Are there certain trails that you should avoid? Hikers don’t always know where they are going on their hike, so make sure that you pay attention to what the trail signs say.

Some trails are better suited for a first-time hiker, such as the Garden of the Gods.

Beginners on a short or moderate hike will do best on the steeper trails. Beginners on a long hike will do best on the meandering, less-steep trails.

Both beginners and experts can benefit from reading and studying hiking trails before starting a hike.

The Best Hikes in Colorado

Outdoor Colorado helps you search for places to go hiking in the area. From the desert to the mountains to the forests, we have it all. Check out the open spaces and state parks we have here in Colorado.

  • Gorgeous Pools and Spas in Colorado
  • We know what you’re thinking:
  • “Pool season is over and my pool .”

So why not go on a hike instead? There’s nothing more refreshing than a nice hike in the sun, surrounded by spectacular views. When you return you can cool off in your own private pool!

Colorado has so many amazing destinations for hikers and adventurers that we are always eager to find new adventures.

Frisco Trail, Summit County

Starting from the east side of the Continental Divide at Grays Peak, this trail stretches across five mountains to Summit Lake at 11,250 feet. Grays Peak and neighboring peaks can be accessed easily via the Lake County Road 16 trailhead. From the intersection of Routt and Summit County’s trails, head south until you get to Summit Lake. If you want to climb the peak, you will need to continue south on the Iddings trail on the Continental Divide trail.

  • The Bigelow Loop, Rio Grande Trail

Looping back and forth up and down the West of the Grand Mesa, this trail gets a whole lot of love from hiking enthusiasts. The long-distance trails near Leadville are accessible by taking the Belle summer trailhead, and walking/hiking up Colorado Avenue.

Buffalo Creek Trail, Summit County

Colorado’s largest state park has nearly 25 miles of trails with views to make your jaw drop. This trail runs along an awesome creek and one side features some great limestone formations. You can enjoy the splendor of the views and the wildlife along the way.

  • Ben’s Gap, Garden of the Gods, CO

This is the only trail to name three peaks in the Garden of the Gods and still be on the trail. Most trails here have some aspect of the more famous Ben’s Gap, which is just the perfect name for this trail. This 3 mile loop is an excellent place to admire the view of Garden of the Gods while still being able to see the entire park. You will also run into some ruins, which really adds to the adventure. The views along this trail are endless and this is the best part.

The Flatirons Traverse, Boulder County

One of Colorado’s greatest treasures is its mountains. From the foothills and plains of Colorado to the high peaks of the Rockies. You can hike in some of the most beautiful canyons and get fantastic views of some of the state’s biggest cities.

From the flat lands of Colorado Springs, through Colorado’s Heart Mountain in the San Luis Valley and on to the peaks of the Eastern Front, hiking in Colorado is a way of life.

The Flatirons Traverse Trail is a 16-mile loop on the southwest side of Boulder, running from Wagon Creek to Folsom, passing through incredible scenery along the way.

These great scenic wonders include Devil’s Head, Folsom Lake, Brossman Park, Tunnel Creek, Chautauqua Park and Tunnel Creek Falls.

Outdoor Colorado

  • How to Find Hiking Trails in Colorado

Looking for some hiking trails to hike? In today’s world, finding a decent hiking trail can be a bit hard. There are a ton of state parks in Colorado that are accessible to many states, and there are countless trails in the state that are free. However, there are few that make the grade for hiking.

I have compiled the following list of trail I recommend to every intrepid and outdoorsy person in Colorado.

  • Cloverbuds Trail

This trail has earned it’s place as the world’s best hike. In fact, it is so popular and well-used that people from around the world will come for it. Located just north of Breckenridge, the first 0.25 miles of the hike is a bit steep. Once past this portion, the hike is quite moderate, with nice gradual grade throughout.

Hikes Near Denver

  • Hikes Near Colorado Springs
  • Hikes Near Crested Butte
  • Hikes Near Durango
  • Hikes Near Salida
  • Hikes Near Carbondale
  • Hikes Near Vail
  • Hikes Near Steamboat Springs

Colorado Parks and Wildlife lists all hiking trails for all of Colorado. They are divided into three levels of difficulty. (from easy to extreme difficulty) Starting with “Trail Map 1”:

Hikes near Denver: This page contains top recommended hikes near Denver and can be accessed from the Denver area. These hikes are listed in descending order and will be linked on the end.

Hikes near Boulder: These hikes are listed in descending order and will be linked on the end.

Hikes Near Boulder

  • Hikes Near Vail
  • Hikes Near Steamboat Springs
  • Hikes Near Crested Butte
  • Hikes Near Durango
  • Hikes Near Durango
  • Outdoor Colorado
  • Steamboat Adventures
  • Superior Hiking
  • Hikes to Take In the Fall
  • Hikes to Take In the Fall
  • Got What it Takes to be a Hiker?
  • Hot Mountain Springs
  • One-Step Springs
  • Copper Creek
  • Steamboat Springs State Park
  • Grizzly Creek Falls
  • Leadville National Fish Hatchery
  • Arapaho Park
  • Rocky Mountain National Park
  • Telluride Mountain Playhouse
  • La Plata Peak
  • Arapahoe Basin

This guide is perfect for your first hike as well as for the avid hiker! If you’ve decided that now is the time for you to get outside and enjoy nature, we’ve got you covered.

Hikes Near Fort Collins

  • Hikes Near Greeley
  • Hikes Near Leadville
  • Hikes Near Telluride
  • Hikes Near Glenwood Springs
  • Hikes Near Steamboat Springs
  • Dining Around the State of Colorado

In Colorado you have plenty of choices for dining out. If you are looking for a fancy or home cooked meal, you are in the right state. If you are looking for a quick bite with some awesome views, there are a ton of places to go. Our state has the largest ranching and agriculture industries in the world. This means the food is amazing. The majority of the state is prairie land.

There are farms, ranches, shops, restaurants, and wineries. We also have a great craft beer scene in our state. From the mountains to the plains, we have something for everyone.

Hikes in Denver Foothills

  • Hikes Near Durango
  • Hikes Near Golden
  • Hikes Near Crested Butte
  • Colorado Hiking Guides: A Complete Hiking Trail Guide

Our favorite guides are our Colorado Hiking Guides. With the over 400 trails across Colorado, we created a complete hiking guide to these diverse mountain ranges. These Colorado hiking trails range from those within a state park, to urban and urban multi-use trails.

We have a checklist guide that helps you decide where to hike, the hiking guide map guides you to the best locations, and then our recommendations to narrow down your final list of hikes. Our picks are unique to Colorado’s trail systems. We list the best hikes, the hiking style, and the ideal time to hike.

Hikes in Evergreen, Colorado

Hiking in Jefferson County Colorado

  • Hikes Near Colorado Springs
  • Hikes Near Vail
  • Hikes Near Telluride
  • Hikes Near the Southwest
  • Hikes Near Steamboat Springs

What You’ll Find Along the Trail: Some of the most awe inspiring mountains in Colorado including Pikes Peak, the Garden of the Gods, and more. Your hike will include trailheads, waterfalls, canyons, lakes, wildlife, streams and more. Hiking paths will range from one to 12 miles long. In some trails you can see waterfalls, springs, streams, and even wildlife. There are also great places to camp in Colorado and the best way to get there.

Where to Hike: Did you know there are over 150 hikes near Denver? You’ll find over 30 miles of trails to explore in and around Colorado.

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