Explore Hwy 285 to Dad's - view hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

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Bergen Peak has a beautiful view. This trail didn't have many scenic views and I hardly saw any fall colors but all in all it was still a nice trail and definitely a good workout. Also, a great place for trail running.

64F in October, had to check this place out! Arrived at 9am, I saw about 20 cars parked(3 parts of big parking lots, easily fit 120 cars) but ran into only 2 dog walkers and 2 fishers. Looks like most people were off to biking. 4 stars because I expected little better views. I have a feeling this place is packed in the summer. Have fun, my fellow hikers!

Nice little hike, pretty views!

This hike was magical today. The Aspen trees are turning so beautifully and you walk through countless forests of them. This was a pretty consistent incline, yet not too difficult. Very tranquil!

This hike was nice. A lot of good shade coverage. Definitely recommended during leaves changing. Once we got to the top of the trail, we laid down in a sea of trees and it was so unbelievably peaceful. The creek towards the beginning also looked like a fantasy. The water is crystal clear blue.

This is my favorite trail! It’s absolutely stunning right now with changing aspens. The trail takes you through forest along a river and over many bridges. The scenery is beautiful and the sound of the river is so calming. In the middle it goes through a field and then goes back into the forest over the river. Towards the end the trail rises in elevation and gets a bit more challenging, but nothing more difficult than medium. It’s a steady incline, but nothing too steep. The trees are beautiful and even in the parts where the Aspens aren’t changing the scenery is wonderful. I cannot recommend this trail enough. It’s perfect if you want forest, river, moderately challenging, and shaded.

trail running
16 days ago

From a serious trail runner's perspective, it is too technical to run the majority of the trail minus the first mile - trail studded with huge rocks, trees, roots, sloping. It is a rewarding trail, lined with aspens along the creek. It goes through a forest then proceeds to crisscross along the creek under aspens for the majority of the trail until it gives way until a clearing/bog. We clocked 9 miles total as well, the end of the trail is the cover photo. There is no proper 'end of trail'. If you choose to continue, it does through a forest then stops abruptly.

This is a well-maintained, nice trail that’s easily accessible from Denver. It’s currently starting to transition into fall colors. We went on a Saturday morning and were pleasantly surprised by how few people we saw, especially on the non-Bergen Peak Trail side of the loop. As others have said, the listing underestimated the length - my AllTrails app clocked us at 10.8 miles round trip from the parking lot.

hiking
24 days ago

Great hike with beautiful sights! My mom didn’t think she’d be able to do a 4 mile hike, but felt amazing when she finished it. A good spot for a relatively easy hike in the woods!

hiking
29 days ago

Awesome trail. Did it over Labor Day and still was quite empty. Could easily be considered hard due to length and elevation gain, but its all worth it for the variety of scenery. Although I saw a few 2wd sedans along the road to the trailhead, 4wd or at least something with clearance is recommended to get there.

Amazing hike. A little tough, especially if you’re not used to the elevation, but it has everything. Starts in a forest setting, crosses a couple of creeks and opens up above tree line. Shelf Lake at the top was a real treat and very few people.

Cool hike to the watershed. Some good views. Not a very strenuous hike.


Would have given it more stars except a group of *obnoxious* drunks down by the water edge yelling “FUCK YOU” and “I Don’t care” and “Dogs!!!” Across the water repeatedly. In fact the group did not shut up and were rudely yelling at other hikers across the water causing their dogs to bark back at them across the water.

Again I feel people that don’t understand hiking etiquette are literally ruining people’s experiences. I had to put headphones on to drown out the noise and yelling and obscenities. But I’m not out there to be forced to listen to music. I’m out there to hear **nothing** maybe birds and the wind. There are other hikers out there who travel from the city to escape people like that and yet these people are up there with absolutely no regard for anyone else. Selfish. Never witnessed such rude behavior on a trail before...ever.

Also saw people and dogs swimming in the drinking water, which I’m pretty sure is **prohibited**

hiking
1 month ago

Beautiful trail with a stream the whole way up. Fall colors are about at their peak. Loved the variety of terrain and scenery plus a nice challenge with some steep areas and decent elevation gain. Only saw 2 groups of people coming down when I was heading up on a Saturday afternoon. Spent 30mins up at the lake with absolutely no one else around. Saw a huge bull moose just about 30ft away on the way down. Will be adding this to my repeat list.

Nice, pretty easy trail. Good for when you want to get out in the woods but aren't looking for anything strenuous.

Trail starts off pretty grim with lots of downed trees and hiking along the road for a bit. i almost turned around after the first mile mile but glad I didnt. The aspens are nearing peak colors and you'll know when you get to the end as it's really beautiful and colorful. Loved all the water crossings. Take a picnic and lots of water. Dip your feet in once you're done! My milage counter was around 9 miles round trip.

hiking
1 month ago

Beautiful trail and only saw two other people!

An awesome hike! Trailhead is a little hard to find because they recently moved the trailhead. Head up the trail that is connected to the parking lot and follow for about a 1/4 mile then you’ll see a sign for shelf lake. Dirt road was tricky is some spots, but manageable for most cars. This hike is also closer to 8 miles round trip.

Got there a little after 9am, parking lot 10-15% full. Started around the lake which was nice, so the end of the hike we were going down the stairs and had a nice view. Good views throughout. Pups had fun. Lots of sun exposure. Walked a little way up he narrow gauge trail and found a nice shallow spot where the pups could play in the water. Easy quick hike.

hiking
1 month ago

A beautiful hike that passes through aspens, moss covered rocks, woods, over streams and ends at a lake. Challenging if you're not used to hiking at altitude, but an overall great hike!

hiking
1 month ago

A mile was added to the hike when the trail head was moved 1/2 mile south of the original location. Eight miles is a more accurate number now. The South Park and Shelf Lake trail heads were combined into one very large parking lot, rather than two very small ones.

Fun trail and we only saw two other people on a Saturday of Labor Day weekend. 8. 6 miles round trip according to my RunKeeper app. Enjoyed the lower 2. 5 mile section probably more than the upper. Well-marked and easy to follow.

Great warmup along the creek and road, then pleasant up and down hike in dense forest interspersed with Mountain meadows. Water the whole way!

3:02 with a minor mix of trail running. It's more moderate.

hiking
1 month ago

You will need an AWD or 4WD vehicle to get to the trailhead. I saw a couple of people try to make it up in their Honda Civic and that was not working out for them.

My GPS tracked the hike closer to 8 miles rather than the 6.8 miles listed. We did go off trail a few times for pictures and the views, but nothing that should have added up to a mile or more. It took us about 1 hour and 30 minutes to get to the lake. Not sure why this hike is rated moderate, it was hard!

Sooo beautiful and calming. One of my favorites so far!

Well-worn path for easy hiking. beautiful area. We went on a Sunday afternoon, and although there were plenty of cars in the lot, we encountered very few people on the trail. saw a full-black Abert's squirrel and a possible marten. Many wildflowers still in bloom.

Beautiful trail but not easy, well worth it though!

hiking
1 month ago

nice place to hiking

hiking
1 month ago

It was a bit tough to find the trail head, but the hike was awesome.

Beautiful hike and perfect for dogs. With parking about 2 miles from the trailhead, the hike is over 9 miles. So nice to hike along the creek and you cross over about 10 times.

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