3 Fun Hikes near Colorado Springs

Garden of the Gods

Any list of hikes near Colorado Springs should include at least one jaunt in or near the Garden of the Gods. The park is not to be missed. Viewing the rock formations within the boundaries and it’s easy to understand how the park was bestowed its namesake. There are several trails in and around the park. One of our favorite trails is the Palmer. You can take the trail nearly the entire length of the park. The Palmer also hooks into the Siamese Twins Trail which delivers excellent access to this crazy rock formation. After crossing the road the Palmer trail leads to the Buckskin Charlie Trail. Taking this series of trails will afford the best views of the entire park, you’ll essentially loop around the largest formations. It’s easy to follow the loop around, or down and back from the car.

To get there: Exit I-25 at the Garden of the Gods exit. Drive toward the mountains until 31st street. Take a left and you’ll come to the entrance. Once there take a quick right and park. The hike will be about 4 miles in length and could take you anywhere from 1.5-3.5 hours.

Red Rocks Canyon

Red Rocks Canyon is almost a mini-version of Garden of the Gods, with less crowds. You’ll also have great views of the Garden of the Gods while exploring this unique valley. The orginal owners of the canyon had planned on developing this 800 acre plot with hotels and homes. Lucky for us, their plans never really materialized and the remaining untouched property was sold to the city of Colorado Springs. The Intemann Trail is probably the best access point. This trail will connect you with several other smaller branch trails. To adequately explore this area allow for 2-3 hours.

To get there: Exit I-25 at Cimarron st, head toward the mountains. Right after 31st Street take a left onto Ridge Road and follow this road until the end and a large parking lot.

Devil’s Head Fire Lookout

As the last manned fire lookout used by the National Forest service, this is a must-see. This is a popular destination, so go early. If you begin this hike first thing in the morning, you’ll be on the way back down when the crowds develop. The lookout sits atop a beautiful granite ridge. You’ll start in a dense strand of trees and finish up with a 360 degree view of the surrounding Tarryall Mountains. Round-trip the trail will be about 3 miles, with last stretch before the lookout requiring a final push up 143 stairs.

To get there: Exit Castle Rock, take Hwy 85 to Sedalia and then Hwy 67 to Rampart Range Road. After 8-9 miles you’ll come upon Devil’s Head Campground. Park there and start hiking!