Eldorado Canyon is a hidden treasure right in Boulders backyard! Whether its hiking amidst the towering sandstone cliffs, picnicking along scenic South Boulder Creek or climbing Eldo's sheer golden walls, Eldorado Canyon State Park truly has something for everyone! Discover this hidden jewel and take home memories that will last a lifetime. Eldorado Canyon State Park selected as one of Ten State Parks You Can't Miss by SmarterTravel.com Eldorado Canyon offers over five hundred technical rock climbing routes luring climbers from around the world to challenge their skills on Eldos golden cliffs. The beauty of this canyon engages all who visit. Hike or mountain bike our picturesque trails that vary from easy to difficult and connect with Boulder's trail systems. Enjoy a picnic by, or fish in, scenic South Boulder Creek. In the winter, Eldorado Canyon offers cross-country skiing and snowshoeing. The quiet beauty of the park can be experienced best in the cooler months, and during summer weekdays. Please avoid the summer weekend crowds! Eldorado Canyon almost always reaches vehicle capacity on weekends and holidays from May through September, i.e. after filling the Park, vehicles are only admitted when space becomes available.
Mike H. on Rattlesnake Gulch Trail
Great hike, but note that it's really about 5 miles total if starting from the parking lot area. Maybe I didn't read enough of the reviews, but I thought the loop, as well as the out and back to/from the loop would be 3.5 miles total. I still enjoyed it and there definitely are beautiful views. Was 8 bucks to get into the park, and starting at about 3pm on a Friday it was not crowded at all. TIP: Don't put the parking sticker on your windshield... it's one of those annoying paper stickers that leaves a ton of paper and residue on your windshield when you try and take it off.
Definitely a moderate hike in that it has enough ascent on the way up to make you feel like you are working, but not all out strenuous. Parking can be tough due to how crowded the park gets. Once you cross the park boundary from town, drive a few minutes in then park on the side of the road where you see spots because the trailhead will be right there (you don't need to drive all the way to the visitors' center).
Did the hike yesterday. A good short hike. Took me about 2 hours including a break. Ran into a few people but not enough to make it crowded. Ascent got blood pumping. Excellent views and the Continental Divide lookout is a nice place to stop for a bit.
The only reason I gave this 3 stars is because the map attached to this trail on All Trails is not 4.7 miles. it's closer to 3. I ended up adding more on the top. Also note that there is a $5 cash only parking fee.
Scenic, not technical, but is exposed in a large portion of the trail, not super steep in an portion of the trail. Homestead trail isn't super pretty but there are so many trails to that link up to this parking lot that youre sure to find a little something for everyone! I would definitely hike out here again and experiment with different routes.