Popular Hiking Trails in the Area

Denver is one of the best places to enjoy a good hike. The city provides an incredible adventure with the beautiful Rockies and scenic blue skies, not forgetting the breathtaking hills and beautiful wildflowers. The locals are friendly, and the available hiking trails are safe for everyone. Here, we will discuss some of the top hiking trails in Denver, trails that will remain in your memories forever and compel you to want to go back to the city. We have covered trails surrounding the city and some that will make you get out of the city a bit and enjoy nature even more.

Chautauqua Park in Boulder Trails

Chautauqua Park is located a few kilometers from the city, and it will only take you around 40 minutes to drive there. The park provides a stroll distance of around 5.5 miles. It provides some beautiful views, and if you are an outdoor enthusiast, you will enjoy your visit here. The park has been around for over 100 years. After you are done strolling, be sure to enjoy some of the amenities in the park, including playing tennis and basketball. If you get hungry when hiking, you can always grab lunch at one of the fine restaurants in Boulder. There are three major trails you can follow while at Chautauqua Park; First, Second Flatiron Trail, and Royal Arch Trail. You can also try the Enchanted Mesa Loop Trail, but keep in mind that this trail is a bit more demanding as it will take you through the pine forest. However, it will reward you with expansive views.

Cherry Creek Regional Trail

Cherry Creek is not one of those trails that will give you the most scenic views in Denver, so if you are looking for a trail with exquisite views, we recommend choosing another trail. However, if you are looking for an easily accessible trail from multiple points, this is the trail for you. You can trek in either direction on the 40-mile trail. Cherry Creek is quite popular with Denver hikers, and you will enjoy it while you are there. The trail begins near Confluence Park and goes all the way to Franktown. While trekking through the trail, you will pass through Parker, Centennial, Glendale, and Aurora. The trail views include concrete canyon walls, some of which are decorated with street art. The trail is very popular with bicyclists, so you are likely to meet lots of them while trekking. Be careful, so you don’t get overrun by any of them. There are some sections on the trail that has sides for walkers and bikers, though.

Staunton State Park Hiking Trail

The park is just a few miles from the city, and you are likely to be there within forty minutes. It is one of the new state parks in Colorado, and it boasts miles of hiking trails that will satisfy your trailing urge. At the park, you can enjoy other activities such as biking, mountain climbing, and not forgetting the beautiful view of the highest waterfall in Denver. The 12-mile trail near the base of the falls is one of the most used trails, but if you want something more challenging, you could hike to the Elk Falls Overlook. Alternatively, if you are hiking with your family, the best trail will be the Davis Ponds Loop. The trail is 3.7 km long, and it is an easy route that you all can enjoy as a family. While at it, you all could enjoy different activities, including fishing and trail running. It is also a perfect spot for a couple looking for an area for a picnic.

Mount Falcon Trails

Mount Falcon offers some of the best hiking trails in Denver, whether you are hiking alone or with your family. Here, you can enjoy different outdoor activities, including running, biking, nature trips, horseback riding, and more. One of the most popular trails at Mt. Falcon is the Mount Falcon Castel Trail Loop. The trail is about 10.8 km long, and it will take you around four hours to complete. You can trail there most times of the year, but the best times to visit are usually between March and October. Dogs can walk on the trails but make sure your dog is on a leash. You can also enjoy the Turkey Trot Trail. The trail is around 4.8 km long, and it will take you around one hour 45 minutes to complete. It provides beautiful views, and you can enjoy various activities such as horseback riding and trail running. While at Mount Falcon, you will enjoy witnessing historic castle ruins and beautiful green views. Be sure to bring your hiking boots for the best results.

Red Rocks Park Trails

Built almost a century ago, the Red Rocks Park is one of the most known tourist destinations in Denver. The park is just around 25 minutes from the city, and it provides some of the most accessible trails in Denver. If you are looking for a hiking trail near the city, Red Rock Park provides some of the most accessible trails in Denver. It comes with scenic views, and most are not too long to make you too tired. For example, the Trading Post Trail at Red Rocks is only 1.4 miles long. It is best to use this trail during the summer or spring as the clash of greens, and red rocks provide such a scenic view. However, hiking here during the winter is not advisable as some of the shaded sections could get icy, spoiling the fun. If you prefer a longer trail, you could use the Red Rocks trail, which is about six miles long and provides beautiful views of Dakota Hogback. Whichever trail you choose at the Red Rocks, you can be sure that it will provide you with beautiful scenes and a friendly environment for hiking.

Waterton Canyon Trail

Waterton Canyon is a 12.4-mile trail that follows a dirt road stretching up to 6.2 miles to the Strontia Springs Dam. The trail provides several types of views, including wildlife. There are also a few picnic spots where you can enjoy yourself with your loved one. Unlike most trails you will find in Denver, this one has plenty of parking space, so you can come in your car. It is only 35 minutes from the city, and it is easily accessible either by car, foot, or bike. Unlike some of the trails in Denver, this one does not allow you to come along with your dog to protect bighorn sheep. They don’t want you to carry your dog, and it ends up attacking the sheep. The trail takes around five hours and 30 minutes to complete, and you can enjoy fishing and horseback riding while at it. The park can be visited at any time of the year since it is open all around. The weather there is quite accommodating, and you will find the trail very relaxing. It is not difficult to navigate; we could describe it as easy to moderate.

Nature and Ecology of Denver Parks

Denver is home to thousands of wildlife species and has an ecosystem that supports scavengers, herbivores, omnivores, people, pets, vehicles, and buildings. People in the city encounter wildlife in their daily lives, from birds to other animals like squirrels. The creatures have adapted to the way of life in Denver, and they take advantage of the habitats created by the city. The city of Denver does what it can to impact the growth of wildlife positively. Many species live in parks, river bottoms, neat water bodies, and in undeveloped pieces of land. Some species such as raccoons, squirrels, geese, and coyotes have adapted the city life, and they thrive very well there.

Ecology of Denver Park

In the Denver Mountain Parks, there is ecological diversity in all the parks. Some parks have over 3000 species, and all the species coexist peacefully. Taking an example of the Rocky Mountain Park, it is home to over 300 species of birds, amphibians, reptiles, fish species, and lots of insects. The plants and animals in the park have become adapted to the mountain ecosystem. They all coexist the way they should. The ecological diversity in the park is like the diversity in the broader Western landscape, ranging from Alaska to Denver. Most of the species in the parks live seasonally or full-time, depending on their tolerance conditions. Some birds in the parks, like Western Tanagers, migrate during the summer. You’ll see them moving to other countries, mostly Mexico and for the winter. The mammals found in the park ecosystem include mule deer, porcupines, coyotes, and black bears.

Natural Areas of Denver Park

That said, there are five designated natural areas in the Denver Parks and Recreation. These areas tell us about the people, geology, and landscape of Denver. They include Parkfield, Heron Pond, Camp Rollandet, Inspiration Point, and Paul A. Hentzell. The areas were designated because of the wildlife habitat in them, native vegetation, and their connection to the community. The areas can be used as classrooms to teach about Denver’s ecology. They function as areas of biological needs and natural beauty. While in these areas, it is important to stay on the designated trails. Dispose of any trash you might have in a receptacle. Additionally, make sure not to pick the flowers and keep your dog on the leash at all times.

Native Grasses

The native grasses are usually the major source of food for Denver wildlife. For that reason, the city of Denver plays its role in protecting and restoring the grass to sustain life in the ecosystem. The city monitors and evaluates the situations at the parks. They ensure they are meeting short-term and long-term goals of the natural resources required. Common measures to protect the native grass include removing competition to the native grass. This includes noxious weeds which compete for moisture and nutrients. Selective mowing is also practiced to maintain a healthy population of native grass. Mowing takes place once every year or after every two years.