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"Stairmaster Sanitas" is a great place to get a very real workout in. We are in decent shape and climbed up Sanitas and went back around the valley loop trail within 2.5 hours. I would categorize this as "moderate to hard" given a few of the rocks you have to scramble over and how steep it is. While you can carry a child on a backpack up an down, it's not the greatest one to choose for that since you might have to shuffle a bit over rocks, etc.

Loved the hike there. Got to the trailhead at 5:45 PM for a sunset hike and finished the hike at 8:20.. about 2.5 hours of hiking and gaping at how beautiful Golden/Colorado is at the golden hour and at sundown.. the trailhead is wayyyy less trafficked at the time we went. Had my dog on a leash all the time because of the rattlesnakes but seemed to be ok!

Great hike, nice views. Lots of sun, only a few areas that were shaded, so don’t forget a hat and some sunscreen.

Great distance and elevation for beginners who want to get some incline!

I love this trail. beautiful views, not too far from golden.

I started up the Sanitas Valley Loop first. Beautiful views of urban Boulder and a smattering of homes in the hills. The moderate valley trail gives way to some steep inclines as it connects with the East Ridge trail. I was visiting from Atlanta so I had to catch my breath and steady my footing as the trail ascended. Had to get used to the change in altitude. Plan to take your time navigating the rocky, sometimes not well marked East Ridge trail if your new to it and out there alone. I got out early in the am and had a few hikers help me find the trail but I can see that this trail gets very well populated after mid morning. At the top of Ridge Trail I met some nice folks who directed me to Lion’s Lair trail just beyond the summit for a good trail run. This trail was pretty smooth and the decline makes for a steady tempo run. Don’t get too comfortable because the switchbacks will keep you on your game. Overall a fun trail to test your trail speed. The locals pointed directed me on how to go from the Lion’s Lair trail to a narrow barely there trail that runs parallel to Sunshine Canyon Dr. This trail led to me the Centennial Trailhead parking lot. Overall awesome experience for a trail runner who wants to mix it up with a hike and run.

6 days ago

Beware of rattlesnakes in the summer!
It's an easy and fairly quick hike. I often do the loop clockwise so that I'm passing people rather than coming up from behind. Most of the trail is rocky/loose rock so it's not as runner friendly on the downhills.

this incline is no joke! my poor pups paws were shredded after hiking these rocks. I ended up having to carry her 2 miles to the end. It was scenic but not as great as everyone makes it out to be.

Great hike, go during a week day in the afternoon if you can there is way less traffic. No mountain biking on the trail so that’s a plus.

Very challenging, beautiful hike! Once you’re at the top there’s an option to hike down towards Sanitas Valley Trail via East Ridge Trail. There was a point along East Ridge Trail that we felt did not have ample signage as we ended up going down the mountain off the trail. Other than that this trail was awesome!

Good hike. Beautiful views. A little much for my 9 and 11 year old.

Beautiful hike with my dog, but had to go early in the AM to beat the summer heat (by noon it was 95 degrees). A few spots got narrow and with mtn bikers out and about there were a couple times we were forced off the path to make room for them. Nice mixture of rocky scrambles and smooth trail.

Steepness was a bit more than expected. Id suggest going up the east ridge as it seems like it would be a bit treacherous to go down. Note that there are large steps that may make it hard for people who have any soreness in their knees. Great views at top!

A lot harder than expected. I would rate this as moderate to hard. I hiked this on a sunny day, which probably made it a bit more difficult. Regardless, I would do this again but counterclockwise next time.

This trail is dope. Beautiful views, waterfalls, it’s fun to hike, and there are great places to take photos for you IG

Harder than expected but beautiful throughout the entire hike. Wore tevas and wished I had my hiking boots

Took my wife to start her getting into shape for more strenuous hikes; moving here to Lyons from NY. About 1/4 mile from damn we encountered a nice size black bear. My wife freaked a little and turned around, couldn’t convince her to keep going. So beautiful a trail, I’m going back.

Such an incredibly beautiful trail! I love that it is dog friendly, because my pooch absolutely loves to hike. We love trails that have water, and this trail has a river that you follow all the way to a reservoir. We also saw a black bear on our hike! Thank goodness it was on the other side of the creek from us. Very neat place.

Sleepy Lion trail is beautiful - stunning views of the dam and Longs Peak, meadows with wildflowers, morning shade in the trees and we had it practically to ourselves on a Wednesday morning. I brought it down to 4 stars because to do the loop you hike back on a dirt road which is nice enough next to the creek but not 5 stars.

This trail was more challenging than I expected. Very glad it was an overcast day. The cloud cover kept us cool. I highly suggest taking the trail clockwise. The apoach to the summit is longer a somewhat easier that way. The decent, continuing the clockwise loop, was difficult in my opinion, and I got the impression that other hikers turn around rather than taking the steep route to the valley. I'm glad we did, however, because the valley is gorgeous and covered in wildflowers.

Great trail! Just be sure to get there early. Very crowded after 10 AM.

Popular trail, great for an evening hike/run. Parking is limited. Seems kind of obvious to point this out, but make sure you aren't parking off the side of the road where it says "No Parking" - you will get a ticket. I saw about 6-7 vehicles get tickets.

We really enjoyed this hike. I'd do it again. We sort of did it in reverse (instead of starting on Mount Sanitas trail we started on the other trail. I forget the name but it's the one on the right. It'll make sense when you get there). Anyway, this seemed much more gradual at first. But once we started the summit it was still a good workout. I don't know if it qualifies as "scrambling" but It gets pretty rocky at some points and it's fun to climb on all fours. I'm an animal though so YMMV. Anyone in reasonable shape could do this hike but don't kid yourself. I saw those dudes who don't wear t-shirts so they can show off their 6 pack huffing and puffing on the ascent. It's really doable though!

After applying a liberal amount of sunscreen I raced toward the trailhead with high hopes and wasn't disappointed. Ascending this natural wonder was a no joke although there was guy carrying his 4 month old baby while navigating this hike. After reaching the peak and celebrating with my gf it was time to crawl down this beautiful beast. Upon decent, I thought many times how the hell do people run down this thing and I can barely walk it, but nevertheless we made it down and finished off with an easy half mile or so walk back down to the car. Great views and kinda crowded

This is our go to hike. Easy to get to, challenging but you can be done in an hour and a half. Great views of boulder at the top!

hiking
19 days ago

Good trail for a quick hike! With minimal stopping it took about 35-40 minutes to get up. Since the area at the top is closed, I didn’t go all the way to the cave. Hardly anyone was on the trail once I got past the intersection with the Table Mesa trail (probably due to the fact that the cave is closed for the summer). The trail leading up to that intersection has several offshoots but they seem to all lead back to the main route or they dead-end quickly so you know to turn around. After the intersection the Mallory Cave trail is well marked. Just keep an eye out for the markers. There is a marker where you turn up the hill to get to the final stretch. I saw a couple of hikers turn early, so just a warning- keep going till you see the sign! I’ll probably try trail running this one next time around.

Great views from this trail. Definitely more difficult for a “moderate” trail, especially near the top. There were rocky areas that were kind of tricky to navigate.

Great trail! We went the easier way up and took the more challenging, rocky way down! Definitely more of an adventure for us Wisconsin folks, but worth every second! Beautiful views! :)

Each year when we’re visiting Boulder we make sure that this is on our list of must do hikes and it never disappoints. We always start on the steep portion and finish on the wide path. We usually hike this at dusk. Great views of Boulder and on the return loop looking south you have wonderful views.

Nice trail. We didn’t do the hummingbird switchbacks today because we were looking for a quick hike. Saving it for next time. From the sleepy lion loop you get a nice view of the reservoir from up above. You also get to walk along the river. Not too difficult. Some steep parts but plenty of flat stretches as well. The sky did turn dark behind us and we heard thunder while on the way back while the sky ahead was perfectly blue. There are bathrooms just past the parking lot. Obey the rules—there was a ranger very vigilantly watching.

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