Explore Summit County

Seven easy trails in 7 charming locations in the heart of Colorado’s high country.

Hike into the forest to magical fairytale lakes, mingle with the chipmunks and view Lake Dillon, find old mines along the trail, meander through Aspens around a beautiful lake with an incredible waterfall, hike in the alpine tundra around alpine lakes, go into the forest and enter a glacier basin, and lastly find a troll and the fairy forest.

You’ll love these trails, as you move to each Trailhead at different locations surrounding Summit County. Each trail offering something different … unveiling Colorado in unexpected ways.

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



Distance: 3.3 miles out & back.  Rated: easy

Reaching Lily Pad Lakes is like walking into a fairytale.

This trail is a gem. You’ll find it’s not much when starting out, but keep going, soon you’re into the forest and hiking deeper into magical lush greens, tall lodgepole pines, and crossing small trickles of water crisscrossing on the path.

Truly an unexpected surprise when reaching the lakes. Flowering Lily pads cover the surface of the lake. Take every social trail you can find and wander around both lakes. Abundant wildflowers and birdsong greet you in summer.

Sweeping views of Dillon Reservoir as you hike back is a treat.

                                                                                     More on Lily Pad Trail …



Distance: 1/2 mile loop.  Rated: easy

Not to be missed for its incredible sweeping views of Summit County.

The trail is a gentle 0.6-mile loop through tall pines & wildflowers. Doesn’t sound like much for a seasoned hiker but its beauty is captivating and never a disappointment.

Picnic tables and manmade teepees along the trail make it a great family outing, a place to show off to out-of-towners, especially those wanting to see Colorado and can’t do the big hikes.

Chipmunks great you as they scramble among the rocks.

                                                                                     More on Sapphire Point ...


MINI MINE TRAIL – Breckenridge

Distance: 1.8-mile loop.  Rated: moderate

Love history? This trail if for you.

Short but sweet hike with exceptional views of the mountain peaks while hiking through some of Colorado’s most historic remnants of mines.

Just minutes into this hike you will come upon mine remnants while meandering through aspens galore. Even though rated moderate you will find this trail quite easy and the surrounding beauty will keep you going!

In the fall this trail is known as the most colorful trail in Breckenridge.

                                                                                     More on Mini Mine Trail …




LOWER CATARACT LAKE – Summit County – Heeney

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Distance: 2.5-mile loop.  Rated: easy

You will be pleasantly surprised at the unexpected beauty surrounding you on this hike.

Find yourself as you hike around Lower Cataract Lake in thick Aspen grooves and eventually going into the dense spruce-fir forest where one of the best waterfalls in the area greets you. 

This is one of our favorite casual day hikes, perfect beginner hike, or snowshoe trek.

                                                                                       More on Lower Cataract Lake Trail …



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Distance: 0.8 mile out & back.  Rated: easy

Want to see one of Colorado’s most beautiful spots without any effort?

Hiking around Loveland Lakes is easy peasy with 3 alpine lakes and views that are breathless. One of the best areas to experience what other hikers spend hours getting to above timberline.

Perfect for the non-hiker who wants to see wildflowers, alpine tundra, and experience the amazing views that always comes with being above the treeline.

This trail has a lot of “wow” for such a short hike.

                                                                                     More on Loveland Lakes Trail …

Want to venture out further? Here is a great map “Summit County Trails Recreation” for your future hikes!

For more Colorado hiking trails, I’ve posted a list of my favorite Colorado Adventure Guide Books


MAYFLOWER GULCH TRAIL – Summit County – Fremont Pass

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Distance: 1.8 miles out & back.  Rated: easy to slightly moderate

This trail is magical as you hike into a glacier basin under the Ten Mile Range and Mt. Fletcher.

Mayflower Gulch is the best backcountry getaway in every season. Easy to get to and doable for just about anyone. Do this trail once and you’ll be back!

You can’t help but be in awe. Scattered mining cabins from the early 1900’s Boston Mine Camp, makes for a spectacular setting beneath the mountain peaks. 

This trail is exceptional and one that has become an obsession with us. 

                                                                                     More on Mayflower Gulch…




TROLL & FAIRY FOREST – Breckenridge

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Distance: Varies  Rated: easy 

One for the kids and just plain fun for the adults too!

What a great way to get kids to love hiking, do a troll hike, and even find a fairy forest. First, visit Isak Heartstone Troll a 15ft amazing wooden sculpture then off to find the fairies.

For about a mile, little handmade fairy cottages line the trail, built by local families and visitors to Breckenridge. Whimsical and magical, you’ll love discovering all the hidden treasures in the woods.

The troll has moved since we hiked to it and found the Fairy Forest but the new information for his new location and how to get to the fairly forest can still be found on Troll and Fairy Hiking…

Hoping if you try all 7 or one of these trails in the heart of Colorado’s High Country, it will get you excited about hiking and make you giddy about getting outdoors!


Each one of these trails mentioned can be hiked in every season. Owning a pair of snowshoes gets you out there more! 

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

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