Hiking adventures surround Colorado Springs, CO. It’s an outdoor paradise, from local hikes to high mountain trails. There is a trail for all skill levels. These are 16 of our favorites!

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Seven Bridges Trail is a magical woodland— A hike for anyone who loves to enjoy the woods. Waterfalls, bridges, and beautiful forests leave you transfixed and loving every minute as you hike this trail. It’s both enjoyable and gorgeous. Perfect for families, visitors, and newbies to Colorado. 

At the last bridge (#7), you can keep hiking toward Jones Park, where the trail conditions change and become much more moderate. 

Loads of trail options within this area! > Download a map.

For a more detailed map, you can purchase > Pocket Pals trail map #3


3.5 miles out and back

Rated: easy/slightly moderate

Dogs on leash ok

Portable Potties

North Cheyenne Canyon Park

Parking: Lot 18

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When hiking Colorado, you think of pines, trees, and mountains. Those are local favorites, but if in Colorado Springs, this area is a marvel. A mini “Garden of the Gods” without the hustle-bustle of people and cars. To see it from the road you drive by without a glance, but DON’T, it’s worth a venture in… Lots of trails to choose from, gentle to heart-stopping!

View a map of Red Rock Canyon Open Space

Information about Red Rock Canyon Open Space

For a more detailed map, you can purchase Pocket Pals trail map #4

Open from dawn til dusk
Open to dogs, bikes, and horses
Off-leash areas for dogs
Free ride bike area

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Garden of the Gods Park is an adventure of dramatic sandstone rock formations and stunning views of Pikes Peak and has been registered as a National Natural Landmark. Getting off the paved paths, away from the crowds and where the locals go, is an exceptional experience. Grab a > Trail Map at the Garden of the Gods Visitor Center. There are 21 miles of trails within the park, each mile as stunning as the next. It’s never a disappointment, no matter the weather or the time of year.

Extremely crowded in the summer. Fall, winter & spring are pristine times to hike, with fewer crowds, crisp air & snow-capped Pikes Peak views; It’s simply captivating.

A Must— Garden of the Gods Trading Post — the oldest and largest gift shop in Colorado

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St. Mary’s Falls is a delightful trail that takes you deep into a canyon among spruce, aspens, and a mixture of pines, with Buffalo Canyon Creek trickling down alongside you. When reaching the trails end, a signpost will lead you to the right, and the hike gets a bit sketchy as you start going up and up before reaching the bottom of the falls. Extremely popular and crowded in the summer months.

Tip: go in October and be rewarded with clear skies, fewer hikers, and an abundance of gold leaves fluttering about.

For a more detailed map, you can purchase > Pocket Pals trail map #3


6.3 miles out and back

Trail #624

Rated: easy/moderate – NOTE: at the end of the hike it becomes mostly moderate

Elevation gain: 1,397 ft.

Portable restrooms at Helen Hunt Falls parking area 



Pike National Forest

From Colorado Springs: Take Cheyenne Rd to North Cheyenne Canon Park – go into Park and drive past Helen Hunt Falls (3 miles) to the upper parking lot at the intersection of High Dr. and Gold Camp Rd. Park here, Hike through the gate and follow the dirt road to the 3rd tunnel. (1.2 miles) Go past the tunnel (over the hill). This is where the trailhead starts.

The low humidity in Colorado keeps the air dry, like the desert, so you need about twice as much water. Hydration and electrolyte balance is vital to overall health, especially at high altitudes and exercising.

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Manitou Incline; It’s not your average hike or a day hike, but it’s one of the most popular treks in the area. You will either love it or hate it. I love it, but most times when I bring someone, they hate me for it. I debated adding this one, but I thought it might be for someone! It’s grueling and not for someone who has not acclimated to the altitude. Please check their website for added information on safety. The hike down Barr Trail is beautiful yet crowded in summer. The 2,744 steps going up are for you to decide! No time to see the scenery as you’re simply trying to breathe. The sense of accomplishment is a feeling that few other challenges can deliver. I’ve encountered a lot of kids on the Incline.

Highest point: 8550 ft

Rated: difficult (extreme) no kidding!

2,744 steps

Located: town of Manitou Springs, CO

Reservations required >  Manitou Incline

Altra Lone Peaks are rated as one of the best hiking shoes and boots. I love mine!


Thirty minutes north of Colorado Springs and close to Palmer Lake, CO., a small community.

A lake, and a must-visit to Rock House Ice Cream.

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Spruce Mountain Trail is a gem about 30 minutes from Colorado Springs. Views, rock outcroppings, and pine forests make this hike a treat so close to Colorado Springs.

Spruce Mountain is a Butte, and most of the loop takes you around the outer edges of the top — one of my favorite front-range trails for its shade and cooler temperatures in summer.

The gradual incline to reach the loop at the top is minimal and easily achieved. The loop across the top is mostly level, wide, and well-maintained. So don’t be worried about the moderate rating.

Bring a paddleboard and head to Palmer Lake after your hike. It’s just minutes away!

5.5-mile loop

Rated: moderate

Portable restroom

Open to dogs, horses, bikes

Large parking lot

Crowded in summer


Drive 25-40 minutes from Colorado Springs and find fantastic mountain trails that leave you breathless!

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Devil’s Playground is a dance with the weather, hiking big rocks, and views beyond your imagination. One adventurous trail and an exhilarating hike to the top of America’s Mountain, Pikes Peak. Short, fun, and challenging. The beginning of the trail is a gentle, moderate climb, and the views are mind-boggling. It was soon stretching beyond the Continental Divide and the valleys below. It is spectacular! Then the challenge begins …the rocks have turned to boulders bigger than me. It is a scramble up a slippery slope and so much fun! 

Your destination is the  Pikes Peak Summit Visitor Center; It is fantastic. But first, make a beeline for the world-famous donuts, go outside and look for mountain goats, watch the Cog Railway arrive, and be stunned at the views at 14,115′ elevation. 


5.5 miles out and back

Rated: moderately challenging

Trailhead on Pikes Peak Toll Road

Fee at Entrance to Pikes Peak

Come prepared for rapid weather changes!

Temperatures at the Summit can be 30-40+ degrees cooler.

Check road conditions before you go.



Pancake Rocks Trail is a popular hike near historic Cripple Creek, CO. After hiking up a series of challenging switchbacks through an abundant forest, you find yourself amidst unusual rock formations. Rocks stacked upon rocks that look like pancakes. Looking one way, views of the west side of Pikes Peak as a backdrop. Looking straight ahead, views towards historic Cripple Creek and the Sangre De Cristo Range.

No views for the first 1.5 miles, just an endless uphill through switchbacks in a forest of Pines, Spruces & Aspens. Then suddenly, the trail levels off and becomes a gentle up-and-down trek. Beautiful views and rock formations begin, and it gets better and better. 

For a more detailed map, you can purchase (Pike’s Peak Region) > Pocket Pals trail map #7.


Rated: Moderate

6 miles out and back

Highest elevation: about 11,000 ft.

Open to hiking, snowshoeing, biking and horses

Dog friendly

Pike National Forest

Closest Towns: Divide, Woodland Park

No restrooms

From Colorado Springs, Go west on Hwy 24 to Divide, CO. Turn left onto Hwy 67 South. Travel 9.5 miles, and just past the closed Little Ike Tunnel, you’ll find a parking lot on your left. No sign indicates where the hike is, just the remains of the old road tunnel. Parking is limited.

Having appropriate hiking essentials makes all the difference in making it an enjoyable and safe experience. For a list of what we use and carry >Day Hiking Checklist

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Raspberry Mountain is all about the Summit and the 360-degree views of Colorado’s incredible mountain peaks & valleys. The fun of scrambling and finding your spot among the boulders to take in the view is the best part!

The hike begins on the Ring the Peak Trail. Unfortunately, there is no signage for Raspberry Mountain on the trail. However, two wood posts mark the turn to Raspberry Mountain. It’s all uphill from here for the last half mile. 

For a more detailed map, you can purchase (Pike’s Peak Region) > Pocket Pals trail map #7.


6 miles out & back

via Ring the Peak Trail

Rated: Moderate

Nearest town: Divide, CO

Dog & Family-Friendly

Popular for Mtn Biking, Hiking

Lots of shade for summer hikes

Pike National Forest

Open year-round

Road closed in winter, hike in 1/2 mile to the trailhead

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The Crags Trail – Get ready for the unexpected. You won’t be disappointed. Instead, you’ll be giddy with awe. Not your regular trek through the Colorado forests when reaching the top. The views, gnarled ancient bristlecone pines, and rock formations will leave you stunned. A favorite trail near Colorado Springs. 

For a more detailed map, you can purchase (Pike’s Peak Region) > Pocket Pals trail map #7.


4.9 miles out and back

869 ft. elevation gain.

Rated: easy/moderate, yet be aware there are sections that are definitely more moderate.

Open year around, best time is May-October

Dog and horse friendly

Trail #664

Note: the gate before the trailhead might be closed due to weather in winter but park at the gate and snowshoe in.

A GENTILE REMINDER: Venturing off trails damages vegetation, leads to erosion, and impacts wildlife.


“Hike Above the Clouds” near Woodland Park and Divide, Thirty-five minutes from Colorado Springs. Find restaurants, trails, and cool weather in summer. Also, check out Colorado Gear Lab, a fabulous outdoor consignment shop in Woodland Park.

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Fivety-five trails for every skill level within Mueller State Park that you could hike the Park for weeks. Beautiful meadows, rock formations, ponds, pines, spruces, and aspens. It’s truly a mountain experience. The Park is open year-round, including the visitor center, which offers terrific guided hikes.

The Park sits at the base of Pikes Peak, where wildlife is abundant and roams the 5,121 acres of natural land.

For a more detailed map, you can purchase (Pike’s Peak Region). > Pocket Pals trail map #8.


55 miles of trails

Open year-round

Dogs not allowed on hiking trails (to protect the abundant wildlife)

Pike National Forest

Closest Towns: Divide, Woodland Park

Mueller State Park – Colorado Parks & Wildlife – for information and trail map.

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Mule Trail is off the beaten path, an easy peasy couple of miles among pines & aspens within rock canyon walls and a flowing creek gurgling alongside you. This is a perfect family of small kiddos trail. It’s green and lush in the summer and provides lots of shade.


Rated: Easy

2.8 miles out and back

Start Elevation: 8,066 ft. minimal gain

Dog friendly

Add to your day and head just across the road (Hwy 67) and find a mini adventure…

Red Rock Trail, a. mini Garden of the Gods. A hidden gem minutes from Mule Trail. When you first reach Red Rock trailhead, not much is visible, but after hiking about a ¼ mile, a mini paradise of red sandstone rocks appears. 



Rated: Easy

3-mile loop or various socials trails

Start Elevation: 8,066 ft. minimal gain

Dog friendly

Red Rock Trail: In Woodland Park. Drive 3.9 miles down Hwy 67 (north) off of Hwy 24. Turn right (east) at the sign for Red Rock Campground. Drive ¼ mile, and you will see Trailhead parking on your right, just past the campground entrance on your left.

Mule Trail: Turn left and drive 1/4 mile to the Trailhead following the directions above.

Two essentials that I love…

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Catamount Recreation Area is a series of trails. Look at the map and decide your route. This hike is popular among my hiking friends who live in Colorado Springs. A trek mostly in the pines. A walk in the woods or a hike to North Catamount Reservoir. Pleasant and relatively quiet when I’ve been here. Note: there is not a lot of trail signage. I’ve only been when visiting friends who frequent this area.

Favorite route – 4.8- mile loop on Elder-Fhen Trail

For a more detailed map, you can purchase (Pike’s Peak Region) > Pocket Pals trail map #7.


Rated: Moderate

Various Routes



Best Guides for Colorado Hikes, non-essential but FUN to have!


A Nature Preserve


Aiken Canyon Loop Trail is a mixture of grasslands, piñon-juniper woodlands, and pine forests, located within Aiken Canyon Preserve southwest of Colorado Springs. Abundant wildlife inhabits this area, including mountain lions, bobcats, deer, and black bears, as well as over 100 species of birds. 

We did not encounter any wildlife on our hike, but we did spot numerous scat and tracks.


Aiken Canyon Loop Trail – 4 miles

Canyon Trail – 3/4 mile one way

Overlook – 1/2 mile out and back

Restrooms & Picnic Tables


No dogs or bikes


More information >The Nature Conservancy

Located: Sixteen miles Southwest of Colorado Springs.


Hidden Gems Off the Beaten Path

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Platte River Trail is the perfect get-outside and getaway trail without the crowds. A little off the beaten path, yet anyone can access it. It’s pretty, with intermittent views of the Platte River and beyond. It ends at the South Platte River, so bring your fly-fishing pole or relax and snack. 


6.6 miles out and back

Rated: easy/moderate

Trail # 654


No restroom

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Guffey Gorge is a hidden gem. You would never know a waterfall, towering canyon walls, and a swimming hole will greet you at the end of this ½ mile hike just off the road near Guffey, Colorado. 


Day Use Only

Fee: $6 per vehicle 

One mile out and back

Leased dogs ok

No glass allowed, No alcohol

Elevation: 8,190 ft.

BLM, Royal Gorge Field Office, 719-269-8500.

Note: Many of the links are affiliate links which means I receive a very small commission (at no added cost to you).

Can't wait to see you on the trail!

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