What are the best trails for hiking in Colorado Springs? There are many, in their hundreds. Let us just say that in any resource showing the best 10 hiking trails in the USA, there must be a trail in Colorado Springs.
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It is also easy to understand why. You see, Colorado is known as a mountain state thanks to being home to the famous Rockies. However, there is a lot more than mountains. There are mountain biking trails hiking trails, camping places and even water adventures.
Any time of the year is good for outdoor adventure in Colorado. However, please note that there is heightened activity in summer as people arrive in their droves from all over the USA as well as other parts of the world.
They come for mountain hiking in Colorado, as you may guess, with the 14,000-feet Rockies in the vicinity. However, even if you are looking for desert hiking, you will find it here. If you are into easy trails for walking, you will find them in plenty here.
All around Colorado Springs, there are parks with trails for hiking, biking, running, and camping. There are also many camping grounds for families. If you are looking for a family vacation idea, head there.
Best time for hiking in Colorado Springs
Any time of the year is good for hiking in the Colorado Springs. Generally, hundreds of hiking trails in Colorado are open throughout the year. However, please note that during winter, it is recommended that you try the low elevation terrains, most preferably in the Eastern Grasslands, the Western Desert as well as close to the cities of Boulder and Denver.
In summer, people come from all over. This means higher rates for hotels and hostels. The trails are also too crowded and if you enjoy vastness, this is not the time for you to visit. Besides, it is too hot in summer.
Winter hikes in Colorado Springs are best because the trails are not crowded. You can have all that vastness to yourself. You could also time your visit for between September and November when the trails are in excellent condition, the weather not too cold.
Here is a simple table showing you the kinds of temperatures to expect each month in Colorado Springs:
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As you can see from the table above, there is a time for everything in Colorado. For example, if you are just into hiking, then you would do the warmer months. But still, the snow months are not too bad either, so you may still hike in the cold seasons.
During the snow months – December, January and February, you can go to Colorado for skiing. That is why we said any time of the year is a good time to visit Colorado Springs. There is not a lot of rain except in the month of August. However, with a few tips for rainy camping, any time is fun time for you in Colorado Springs.
Best trails for hiking in Colorado Springs
There are all types of hiking trails in Colorado Springs. In this section, we are going to look at several of them, things to see along the way and if possible, their difficulty ratings.
1. Bear Creek Dog Park – Best trails in Colorado Springs
If you are looking for easy hiking trails in Colorado Springs, you will feel right at home in the 25-acre Bear Creek Dog Park. It has so many types of hiking.
Most of the trails here have a difficulty rating of easy. Thus, you can come with your children. You may not even have to use baby carrier for your four-year old kid.
Bear Creek Dog Park is also one of the most popular dog parks in the USA, so you can bring your canine companion along for hiking. Some of the amenities to look forward to in this park include plenty of shade, water, restrooms and others.
Bring snacks for hiking, for you will want to spend a lot of time on these trails.
2. Garden of the Gods Park
Are there good trails in this park or is it just a fancy name? Well, there are so many things to look forward to in this park. First, it has a deepest geological history spanning over 300 years. You would love to experience such rock and soil formation history firsthand.
You will get more than 15 miles of hiking trails in this park. So get your hiking shoes ready. Even if you bring your children, you should still be able to have a lot of hiking fun since there are more than 10 miles of paved trails.
Other adventures to do here include bird watching, flowers and plants, rock climbing and even camping. In fact, this is regarded as one of the best places to camp in Colorado. You will never regret going here for your adventure.
3. Midland Trail – Hiking in Colorado Springs
What a beautiful name for a trail and there is a good reason for this. The Midland Trail connects the Manitou Springs with the Beautiful Park, which is in Colorado Springs. The trail starts with a section that has been paved with concrete, and it is 8 feet wide.
As an easy hiking trail, you can hike with your small kids in summer. However, please note that the trail is not all continuous because it has a gap at 21st Street. You will pick up the trail again at 25th. The good thing is that some parts of the trail run on the streets.
4. Fountain Creek Park Trails
Get miles of easy hiking trails here. With difficulty rating of easy, there are so many things to see and do. One of them is that you get to see a lot of wildlife, ponds, minimal elevation gain as well as plenty of shade. This center also has creeks, marshes, ponds, meadows and cottonwood forests. It is known for offering education programs to school-goers.
5. Mt. Cutler Trail – best hike in Colorado Springs
This trail is located inside the North Cheyenne Canon Park. It runs parallel along the North Cheyenne Canon Road and then it goes up to the peak of Mt. Cutler, following a beautifully forested trail. Along the way to the top, you will see the Will Rodgers Shrine and the most notable Stratton Open Space.
Although this is largely a relaxed trail that you can do even with your kids, you still need to know a few things. First, it leads up to the summit, so it must have some elevation gain. Secondly, it has some loose rocks, so you should be very careful. The reward is that once you get to the top, you will get wonderful views all over.
6. Pikes Peak/Barr Trail
Well, what we will be looking at here is the Pikes Peak via the Barr Trail. It is a 21-mile trail with a difficulty rating of difficult. Thus, you cannot bring your kids here, especially because of the distance and the terrain. If you are experienced, you may try to tackle this trail and you will love it.
Among some of the things that you will see include a waterfall. The trail is wide enough almost the entire way. While going up should take you anywhere from 5 hours, coming back down is easy and should take about 3 hours. You may bring your dog but keep him on a leash.
Be ready and bring your hiking poles too because there are some really tough patches near the top. The trail is very well marked, so you should have no problem staying on it. Some people have said that they have taken the hike with their 5-year olds. If you do the same, you will have to hold your child’s hand most of the time.
7. Cheyenne Mountain State Park – best hiking in Colorado Springs
Located to the south of Colorado Springs, the Cheyenne Mountain State Park is one of the places where you can go for hiking in Colorado Springs. The park covers slightly more than 2700 acres, so you can imagine about the number of hiking trails that you will find there.
Camping is one of the reasons why people frequent this park. There are incredible campsites, with 51 of them being full serviced while 10 of them are just basic campsites. Thus, park your family tent for camping so that you enjoy some time there.
Another thing that you will love this park for is hiking trails. There are all of 28 miles, which you will enjoy hiking with your family. Their difficulty ratings range from easy to challenging. This is brought about by the different ecosystems from plains to mountain peaks.
For your children, there are many education programs happening in the park most times of the year. You can learn some more about this state park here. Some of the best hiking trails in Colorado Springs are found in this park.
8. Seven Bridges Trail – best hiking in Colorado Springs
This trail is quite popular especially in the warmer seasons. It has a difficulty rating of easy to moderate, thus making it good enough for families with kids.
The beauty of this trail is outstanding. In winter, you might experience some hard places especially when there is snow. However, in the other seasons, you will love this more than any other trails. It is wooded, so there is plenty of shade. There are creeks along the way, so you might bring your hiking water filter.
You may bring your dog on the trail but you must keep him on a leash. In case you are wondering where the trail got its name from, it is from the fact that it makes its way around seven bridges. Along the hike, you will see a canyon, which makes a good view for you.
9. Palmer Park – best trails in Colorado Springs
Palmer Park is located bang in the middle of the city of Colorado Springs. It is one of the best urban parks in the USA. The good thing is that there are so many things to do there. If you are hiking enthusiast, you will agree that this park offers some of the best hiking in Colorado Springs.
It covers all of 730 acres of land that was once a baseball field. Today, you can engage in horseback riding, hiking with the kids and your dog on the more than 20 miles of trails and you can even have a picnic right there in the park.
The only “bad” thing about this park, if we can call it that is that it attracts quite a crowd. And why not, seeing its prime location and the things it has to offer? Thankfully, there is room for everyone, so you should not worry about crowds. Just roll along!
Other activities that you might engage in include mountain biking. Sometimes, you will catch the cacti plants in full bloom, among an array of other wildflowers.
Make sure to pack enough water and food, especially when visiting the park in summer.
10. Catamount Trail – trails in Colorado
Get on your hiking outfit and hit the ground on this 6-mile hiking trail (round trip so 3 miles either way). Catch some of the best views of Pikes Peak, the Garden of Eden, incredible wildflowers and many more.
Because of the 1700-foot elevation gain, this trail requires you to wear proper shoes. This is the time to get those hiking boots for your girl out and make her wear them. At the trailhead, you will get some tough going because of the rocky ground, and then the going gets easier after that.
Your hike starts in the Green Mountain Falls town and ends when you get to the South Catamount Reservoir. The latter is close to Pikes Peak. When you get there, take a picnic table and sit down to a nice meal. Bring your food for hiking! Restrooms are available, so you should be fresh when you start on the return trip.
11. Red Rock Canyon Open Space – Hike in Colorado
Here, you get many trails with different difficulty ratings. The best trails are those that pass through red rock ridges. In the vicinity, you can catch sights of the Garden of The Gods.
Choose a trail depending on the kind of hike you are looking for. For example, if you have kids, choose a trail that is rated as easy. If you brought your bike, you will find a bike trail. You may also bring your dog but keep him on a leash.
12. Paint Mines Interpretive Park
Such a fancy name this place has, but does it offer much? You can guess it does. Some of the things that you will see there include varieties of plant and animal life. There are birds, insects, wild flowers and much more.
The difficulty rating for the trails in this park is easy. You can hike with small children. You may not bring your dog, but you will have a lot of fun all the same.
Largely viewed as a geological park, perhaps there is only the Garden of the Gods to rival Paint Mines. It has some history too, with evidence of human habitation from 9000 years ago.
As you hike along, catch some amazing strata of rock and soil colored in mauve, white, yellow and pink. You will definitely want to capture some photographs, so bring your camera along.
We could go on and on about the best trails for hiking in Colorado Springs. There are hundreds of them and all of them have a nice view to offer, a waterfall and such other features. The good thing is that you go to Colorado Springs any time of the year for different types of outdoor adventures.