Colorado Springs has so many trails to enjoy and this unseasonably warm weather allows you to take advantage of the breathtaking scenery well into the new year! Here’s a list of a handful of amazing hikes you’ll find in Colorado Springs and the surrounding areas of El Paso County that are great for both the warm and the winter months. Now get outside and start exploring!
Cheyenne Mountain State Park
There are 27 miles and 21 trails to choose from at Cheyenne Mountain State Park, but the Sundance Trail is a sure thing, even in winter. At 3.3 miles with a 573-foot elevation gain, the sunny loop trail stays warm year-round. You’ll meander through vast meadows with beautiful wildflowers in the spring. Dogs are only allowed on certain trails to protect fragile ecosystems, so check before you bring your four-legged friend along. If you have good weather, definitely check out some of Cheyenne’s more challenging trails for great views and a great winter workout.
Lovell Gulch Trail in Woodland Park
Lovell Gulch Trail is a 5.5-mile lollipop loop that sits at about 8,600 feet. The trailhead is roughly 20 minutes up Ute Canyon and temperatures are typically ten degrees lower than in the Springs. The trail leads across a stream, cuts through forests of aspen and ponderosa pine, and offers stunning views of Pikes Peak’s north face and Ute Pass. Locals suggest taking the trail counterclockwise for a more gradual ascent.
Palmer & Central Gardens Trail Loop in Garden of the Gods
The Palmer & Central Gardens Trail loop is a lovely winter wonderland with outstanding views of some of the Garden of the Gods’ most beautiful rock formations. The 4-mile trail is easy and welcoming of leashed dogs. You’ll see the Siamese Twins and Kissing Camels on your stroll. If the weather allows, check out the many other trails available at Garden of the Gods.
Black Forest- Fox Run Loop and Section 16 Trails
About 30 minutes from Colorado Springs is the Black Forest. The secluded area offers rolling, green hills and an enchanting forest with plenty of gorgeous trails to explore. A particularly good trail, even when covered in snow, is the 3.1 mile Fox Run Loop. The trail is wide and even, winding through the forest and skirting two small lakes. You are welcome to bring your pup, as long as they stay on the leash. Another easy and beautiful trail in the Black Forest is the Section 16 Trail. The 3.8-mile loop is open year-round.
Rampart Reservoir via Rainbow Gulch Trail
The Rainbow Gulch Trail, leading to Rampart Reservoir, is an easy, wide 3.4 mile out and back path that’s terrific for families and allows leashed dogs. The main path diverts a couple of times into side trails, but they lead right back to the main path. Rainbow Gulch gradually descends to Rampart Reservoir where you can continue hiking as long as you wish. This trail offers stunning views and a lovely lake.
Florissant Fossil Beds- Petrified Forest Loop & Boulder Creek Trail
The Florissant Fossil Beds National Monument is a must-see any time of year. For a nice winter hike, try the Petrified Forest Loop. The 1.1-mile trail takes you on a tour of the bottom of ancient Lake Florissant. You’ll see huge, petrified, redwood tree stumps as you walk. If you’re looking for something a little longer, hike the 3-mile Boulder Creek Trail loop. Secluded and diverse, you’ll pass wetlands, a river, and giant boulders. Definitely kid-friendly, but leave the dogs at home!
Dawson Butte Ranch Open Space Trail
An easy, 5.1-mile loop, Dawson Butte Ranch Open Space Trail meanders through a rolling terrain of forest and meadows with lovely views of Dawson Butte and the Front Range. The wide trail also welcomes horseback riders, so watch your step! With plenty of parking, the trail is family-friendly year-round and welcomes leashed pets.
Colorado offers so many beautiful hikes any and every time of year. If you’re looking for natural beauty and plenty of outdoor fun, let us help you find a Colorado mountain property for sale. Code of the West Real Estate loves Colorado and we know the best places to look for your next mountain home. Contact us today to start your search and change your life!For more convincing, check out our blog 5 Best Places to Buy a Mountain Home in Colorado.