Explore cripple creek - view hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

cripple creek Map
VIEW FULL MAP

Definitely a moderate hike, I was a little out of shape when we went but it was a blast. We went at 6:30am and there was plenty of parking and it was a beautiful trail!

I gave this trail five stars because of the giant petrified Redwood tree stumps, not necessarily for views and terrain. The petrified stumps are awe inspiring. I had no idea there was anything like this here in CO...and I am a native!

Guys, DO NOT CONFUSE THIS WITH SEVEN FALLS! For one, this is free. Also, I had much more fun here.
Keep going up the mountain/road after Helen Hunt falls and you will see a huge parking lot. Go west through the gated dirt road and then after 0.7 mi (according to GPS/Fitbit) you will see the 622 post. My husband and I had fun taking pictures at every bridge we hit. I really enjoyed this hike. From the parking lot to the end of bridge 7 and back, my Fitbit clocked 3.47 mi.
There seems to be paths everywhere, but remember the whole path is along the creek. If you think you’re getting too far away from the creek, you probably are.

This can be a great hike - if you're prepared. I completed this hike with 3 friends this past Saturday, August 11, and we all found it more challenging than expected, especially given that the most recent review here says "first easy hike...perfect for our 7-year-old's first time in CO"! I'm wondering if either they did a different trail or they just have the toughest 7-year-old in the world.

The first challenging aspect is that this hike is located in the true Colorado desert, much of it without cover so you're hiking in the full sun. Second, it's a a lower elevation than most of the hikes we do in CO so there's not the normal escape from the summer heat that we're used to. I would not recommend doing this hike in the summer at all unless you have plenty of water - as in bring what you think you need then bring about half as much again - and you have the proper summer-time gear, like wide brimmed hats, lots of sunblock, etc.; or you hit the trail VERY early in the day before it gets warm.

This trail is very rugged. The condition of the trail matches the fact that it is in a State Wildlife Area as it definitely wild! In many places it is overgrown to the point that you are pushing through vegetation without being able to see where you're going. Often we were essentially skirting the side of the canyon on a single-file trail. The trail itself is covered in largish rocks that force you to keep an eye on where you're placing your feet. If you want to take in the scenery, which really is beautiful, you almost have to stop to avoid a misstep.

The trail isn't always clearly marked either but we did download the All Trails map and it helped us get back on track a couple of times, BUT, there is one section that apparently has been rerouted since the map was last updated. When going clockwise, right as you're leaving edge of the creek for the last time, there is a fork in the trail and the All Trails map tells you to go left, even though the trail on the right is more well-used and there are a few rocks partially blocking the left fork. We thought we should trust the All Trails map though and went left and wound up in what appeared to be a bear's bathroom! The trail just tapered out at an area of undergrowth that was covered in bear scat! We even passed a bear scratching tree with a big clump of bear fur on the ground below it. We wondered if the trail was rerouted to avoid a bear den! In any case we turned around and took the right fork and got back on track.

The length of this loop is also a little longer than stated here. We started recording with the All Trails app as soon as we got out of the car, which was parked very close to the trail, and our round trip distance measured 8.2 miles. I think the 7.5 mile distance doesn't include the walk from the parking lot to the actual trail head.

Overall I did enjoy this hike. The canyon itself and the creek are really beautiful and I loved that there was only one other car in the parking lot when we arrived - something unheard of in most places in CO on a summer Saturday. But as I stated earlier, it was definitely more challenging that we expected and I don't know that I would do it again any time soon. Maybe in the autumn and would still bring a lot more water.

hiking
3 days ago

make sure to get there early! also we had some trouble finding the signs haha but it overall was absolutely gorgeous and very nice.

Beautiful waterfalls.

Checked this one off 8/11/18. We left the trailhead at 5:20 and hit the summit at 9:20. The bike race up the Peak was today. I don’t know if they delayed opening the road to vehicle traffic because of that, but when we hit the top, the only folks there were the cyclists (including two unicyclists, you maniacs), and a couple other hikers who got there before us. But the tour busses started showing up while we were milling about the summit house (note: I ate a donut because I think you have to the first time, but it’s kind of a garbage donut). As others have said, you have to understand there are going to be a lot of people in the summit, but it was certainly a lot more pleasant before the Devil’s Playground parking lot filled up. So, I guess I’m saying that if you take off early enough, and move at a decent pace, you can avoid most or all of the crowds. The downshot there is you’ll be waking through a gorgeous pine forest in the dark when you first set out. But you’ll see it on the way back.

I made a mistake regarding the weather. I expected temps to stay steady in the mid-40s all the way up, which is what I dressed for (shorts and a pullover). I would have been fine, except I didn’t account for how long it would take the sun to get over the top of the mountain. We were well above tree line before the sun finally appeared, and I was freezing my ass off. But, I’m a pretty cool moment, the sun topped the mountain, the trail leveled out a little, and the summit came into view, all within seconds of each other. I should note, I had more layers in my bag, but I was being stubborn and didn’t want everyone to stop so I could put some pants on.

It’s an easy route to follow. We had (almost) no trouble with wayfinding. Right before treeline, we somehow started following a social path that switchbacked through some gravelly scree, but it led us right back to the main trail. Probably no more than 3 minutes off trail. We had no trouble with route finding coming down. The steepest sections below Devil’s Playground and above tree line was a bit loose in spots. Trekking poles would have probably come in handy, but it was fine.

All in all, a good hike. Good physical challenge, great views looking west, with the Sawatch at the far end of the horizon.

Saturday Aug 4th. Great trail. Started at 4:30 am. Heard a mountain lion scream around 5 am...super scary but we pressed on. Made it to the summit at 10:30 am...the last section with scrambling was difficult but fun. enjoyed a donut at the top. We took the free shuttle to devils playground and then hiked the rest of the way down. Glad we took the shuttle because we got to the car just in time before it started storming! My tip for others is start early, bring headlamps, proper gear, cash for tips if you take the shuttle down and watch the skys.

Love the coolness of the trails through the forest. The bridges are pretty well maintained. The views are amazing.

hiking
6 days ago

I completed this hike during the week in mid August 2018. The trail had a few people on it. I had heard that it was often crowded on the weekends. I hiked well past the seventh bridge staying within site of the creek. After I hiked across several steep sandy parts void of trees, I was in the trees again. I could see what I thought was the summit. The weather rolled in, it started to rain so I turned around and headed out. I will return to this trail again.

hiking
8 days ago

Great hike with tremendous views at the top. Difficult for the first half mile and the last half mile but pretty easy in between.

Simple and straightforward hike. I would say it is very family friendly. Well shaded and cool with a creek flowing through. The area is extremely busy on the weekends.

Checked this one off on 08-04-18. Yep to all the previous postings, so I’ll save you that. A great trail to get some beautiful views to the south and west of Pikes Peak that you won’t necessarily get from the summit/Barr Trail.

You have to go into this one just knowing you are going to encounter a lot of visitors and be next to the toll road once you hit Devil’s Playground. With that said, this approach is less crowded than from the east, and the toll road doesn’t open until 7:30AM, so if you get an early enough start and get after it, no cars. This will also help with parking at Crags TH, as there was plenty of parking around 5AM but it was packed when we returned around noon.

Last thing, based off two different GPSs, it was respectively 14 miles round trip to/from the Crags TH and summit. Oh, and the doughnuts at the summit are worth it...

hiking
13 days ago

My family (including my 2 year old) went on this hike on a Friday morning. We got to the parking lot around 8 and it wasn’t too busy. The walk along the road is about .5 mile, then you turn right at trail 622. It’s not well marked. After the road it is beautiful, shaded, and a little rocky. My son loved going over all the bridges. Great family hike! On our way back (around 10:30) it was pretty busy and the parking lot was full.

hiking
14 days ago

hiking
15 days ago

Nice easy hike for any skill level. Once you get to the trailhead, rest of the trail is pretty much shaded and cool. Few doggy poops and bags were spotted but not enough to ruin my day. There were no bugs, no bathroom and no hiking stick is required.

hiking
16 days ago

Picked a beautiful day to hike up to the Crags! It is an easy trail as long as you stop to catch some air & enjoy the views of the amazing rock formations. The view at the end is well worth it & plus meeting new folks from other places! You will not be disappointed!!

Really beautiful hike along the creek. Was gorgeous after a light snow the night before.
After the 7th bridge we continued up the trail-622-Seven Bridges to Jones Park. We encountered a large adult brown bear at the aspen grove on the trail. He was not aggressive, but interested in us.
We called the Colorado Park and Rec to report and they said he has been hanging around there for about a week and is deemed not aggressive. Make sure you have your bear spray and are aware of what to do in an encounter.
It was worth the adventure because the meadow was so pretty.

Beautiful. Well kept trail.

Great views. Last 1,000 feet is a rock scramble at 13,000 feet. The last 1,000 is by far the most challenging part. Pay attention to the rock stacks they will guide you to the top. Donuts and coffee at Pikes Peak gift shop are super delicious! Extremely windy and it snowed on us July 28 . Dress in layers and bring gloves it’s cold up too!

Beautiful trail! Beginning is a semi steep climb that gets your heart pumping esp if not used to the altitude. From there a nice rolling trail. Some shaded then a section that opens up to a meadow. Last half mile is another climb to a fantastic 360 view! Road to the trailhead is narrow and rough but my small SUV handled it.

hiking
18 days ago

Used to love this trail until tourists and inexperienced transplants found it. No one respects this trail or their fellow hikers. Constantly running into people who refuse to leash their dogs or pick up after them, and parents with too many small children to keep track of or keep safe and mindful with cyclists and runners around. Definitely will only return to this trail in the winter when I don’t have to share it with hoards of disrespectful and clueless people.

Beautiful!

Tourists destroy this location in the summer... learn how to park in the top lot please, don’t litter, and use proper trail etiquette

Very easy, great for beginners. Loved the petrified trees and got lots of pretty pictures.

hiking
24 days ago

Beautiful view at the end. Worth the hike. However, my recording said we walked 6.8 miles on this trail.

Our traditional first easy hike to get acclimated. Perfect for our 7-year-old’s first time in CO. Also where we scattered one of our dog’s ashes - so has lots of sentimental value attached for us. Beautiful.

Gorgeous views...breathtaking! My family came down on the wrong trail from the top and was tricky to find our way back to the trail. Beginning and end got our heart rates up but it was not too bad for our Kansas crew. We really enjoyed this hike!

I hiked this yesterday; started at noon and finished a few minutes after 2. It was my second time on this trail. The weather was perfect and it was moderately challenging but had places of reprieve. The meadow just past the creek is so gorgeous and is filled with lush green grass, wildflowers, and tall sturdy trees along the perimeter. Once you make it to the split, follow the sign for Raspberry Mountain. It gets tough here. Very steep climb, but it’s shaded, so that helps. When you get to the large boulders, follow the trail through them and them hug the outside of them as you round out beside them. The trail seems to disappear a bit, but just stay near the rocks and after about 100 yards, you will see the rocks that you climb up to the top. The view is insane and totally worth the climb. The only drawback for me was the enormous swarm of gnats that cut my viewing pleasure short.

26 days ago

Great hike to pikes peak. Awesome views!

Load More