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I love this trail. I completed it last month before the snow. The nature and views are beautiful. I loved watching the train pass in the distance. I am a Colorado native so I never really feel inclined to go back to most trails but I will definitely hike this trail again. There is an $8 fee to get into Eldorado State Park, or $5 to park outside the park and walk in, but you can tell the state park puts the money to good use. This has to be one of the cleanest trails I’ve seen. There aren’t too many tactical areas. I went counter clockwise at the loop, so going down the incline back to the trailhead was rather rocky and steep. I almost fell at one point, but it was only for a short stretch.

So beautiful especially when the larch trees are in all their autumn glory. I hiked this 10/24 and the larches were in full effect. I hiked counterclockwise and I was very happy with the decision. It was a busy trail even on a Wednesday so I would suggest off peak times if possible.

One of the best trails around.

There are rattlesnakes so be careful, but don't miss out! This is a great workout for people looking to improve beginner hiking skills. Lots of great views, really cool area for rock climbers, and a little history hidden on the trail.

I would have liked to pick up the pace to get a better workout in, but the trail was pretty crowded (granted, it was midday on a Saturday.) Overall it was a nice trail, great views at the top, and fun to watch climbers on the opposite rock face. My friends and I maintained regular conversation without much huffing and puffing and there were plenty of kids on the trail, so I’m not sure if deserves a “moderate” categorization, but it was a great outing for sure. Saw some cool birds, too!

it's all true. rough trail, very steep and beautiful views

A fantastic climb with a great summit.

snowshoeing
5 days ago

Beautiful views and great hike. Was debating whether it’d be a hike or a snowshoe. I brought my snowshoes and am glad I did. Starts hard pack and hikable but turns to postholing after a mile or so. Trail disappeared so I broke the last half mile using my GPS for guidance. Poles came in handy. So easy to get to from Denver.

got there at 10 a.m. yesterday only a couple of cars in the lot. though there's not a lot of spaces. well maintained trail. nice steady incline for first couple of miles. the view at the top was beautiful! bring layers! started off needing 2 jackets a hat and gloves went down to just day clothes as we got going.

snowshoeing
6 days ago

Plenty of snow already! The first mile or so of trail is pretty packed and easily hiked without spikes. But you’ll need snowshoes after that (unless you enjoy battling knee high snow). The trail was barely visible after two miles, but managed to sleuth it to the junction. Be safe out there!

snowshoeing
10 days ago

Simply beautiful, and plenty of fresh powder!! There were folks doing this hike with microspikes but snowshoes really came in handy as the powder was knee deep halfway into the hike and above treeline.

it was raining at the start, so the trail was pretty slick, but a really good hike. as others mentioned, there's a bit of scrambling up some rocks about 3/4 of the way up. great views and definitely worth it.

Love this trail. Forest provides great shade in the summer. Not too crowded but you do need to watch out for bikes (and vice versa) as visibility isn’t great in some areas.

The first part of the trail is light on people. Once you merge into Meadow Trail (which then heads to Devil’s Elbow), there is heavy traffic (a lot of mountain bikes were out today).

hiking
11 days ago

Great hike, but a ton of snow now. Yaktrax from the TH are recommended. Skis/snowshoes are probably a good choice, too. I was falling in to snow about knee-height around 2 miles in, and turned back. What a beautiful hike though.

hiking
12 days ago

East trailhead Castle Trail up long switchbacks to Walker Ruins & Summer White Hse (great views west!) return Down Turkey Trot Trail north facing sections icey slush. 8am start, not too crowded mid week.Windy, layer up, gloves & ears. CMCDan,Nov 2 ,2018.

hiking
12 days ago

I have hiked this trail twice before but hiked it again today on November 3rd. I went 3.5 miles and then turned back, but could have gone further given the snow. It was snowing but very lightly. People I passed said you could go further than I went—one said just one grade away from the pass. Don’t let the snow stop you on this one even if you can’t do the full loop. You can still do quite a bit and it’s still beautiful!

Note: I always go counter-clockwise.

Also, there were less than 10 groups hiking today.

hiking
12 days ago

One of the best hikes you can do located within an hour of Denver. Heart pumping hike with a beautiful mix of mountain vistas, wooded trails and open valleys. Plenty of snow on the ground now so YakTrax are highly recommended. Plentiful parking at the trailhead as well. A must do for serious hikers.

gnarly trail, view at top legendary

hiking
13 days ago

I am a beginner and it was my second hike. I went there on Saturday around 12pm and returned at 7:15pm. It was hard for me but I enjoyed a lot. I would suggest not to add 0.7 mile for Ann lake because there is nothing to see, rather you will get nice view form the top.

If you are beginner then it’s really hard for you, as per my experience.

Hiked this my first day in Denver so getting used to the elevation was a little rough for me. But overall I thought it was a great hike! The overlook was incredibly beautiful and while the trail was a bit rocky in places, it was mostly flat and wide with a slight constant incline to the top. I am not an avid hiker and a bit out of shape so I thought it was the perfect combination of a challenge, scenery, and length.

Nice, steep trail with great Red Rocks views.

This trail is incredibly beautiful, even when it’s foggy. We didn’t have much visibility due to the weather, but it was so gorgeous with the fog and fall colors. Go before the road closes for winter, but beware of ice. We got to see the larches, and the whole trail was lovely.

Awesome little trail with a nice overlook. some snow was melting from a dusting earlier in the week, so the trail was a bit muddy, but otherwise good.

I had a few free hours in the afternoon and live about 30 minutes away from here, so I thought I'd give it a go.

Nice trail. Well maintained. Great scenery. Gentle elevation gain.

Certainly not one of Colorado's greatest hikes, but a good couple hour loop.

It can be a little crowded, and parking can be hard to come by.

Absolutely beautiful! We hiked this trail on October 16, 2018. The larch trees along with the fall colors had us using the words beautiful, amazing, breathtaking several times. We went clockwise (steeper on the way up) this made for a much easier time on the knees for the trip down. We plan to make another trip next spring!

on Forest Lakes Trail

15 days ago

Hiked 10/28. It’s pretty snowy already but we managed without yaktraks. Beautiful hike for the short distance. Highly recommended esp, with dogs!

Hiked 10/29/2018 Castle Trail up to the Presidents Summer House. Beautiful views. Not too busy. Perfect weather and views. Easy to moderate. Great trail while acclimating to the altitude.

hiking
17 days ago

Great hike! We went last Friday and it was a beautiful day. The trail was icy and snow packed in some areas and even more so the closer we got to the lake.

on Green Mountain Loop

hiking
18 days ago

We hiked from the base of Chautauqua to Ski Jump, Bluebell-Baird, Amphitheater, Gregory Canyon, Ranger, E.M. Greenman, Saddle Rock and then Amphitheater and back to the base. We hiked it counter-clockwise and it was about 8 miles in total. It's steep and strenuous in the beginning until you get to Ranger and then it levels out for about a mile or so before beginning the route up the summit. It's a really beautiful trail with views of Boulder and Indian Mountains. It'll be crowded in the beginning, but then will level off.
One thing to note is right now E.M. Greenman is not allowing dogs, so you have to just go for it or hike the way you came up. Also, there's a ladder on Saddle Rock due to the flood damage, but there is a path around it to the left going down that the dogs can easily get down using vs. the ladder.

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