Explore the most popular views trails in Mesa Verde National Park with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

WARNING! You need to purchase a ticket at the main visitors center to access this trail. Which you wouldn’t know unless you stopped at there on the way in and talked to a ranger. If you (like me) skip the visitors center and go straight for trails you would never know. There are no signs or information leading into the park to let you know this. We drove 27 miles to the trailhead just to be told “sorry but you are not allowed access to this trail without tickets, please drive 54 miles round trip to go get them). Which we were willing to do but by the time we made it back to the visitors center they were sold out of “tickets” till late in the afternoon (this was at 8:15am). If you’re not there by 7am don’t waste your times Tickets to go hiking? Never heard of this in my life. Terrible experience.

A nice hike going along the scenic canyons. The way has some elevation change and involves stepping over rocks. The way back after The petroglyphs is very easy and flat (you walk along the top of a canyon wall most of the way). Overall a pretty easy hike and it’s well worth it to see the ancient petroglyphs carved on the side of the canyon!

love the scenic trails.

scenic driving
11 days ago

There were plenty of stops on the road to see cliff dwellings, pit houses, and stunning canyon views, plus we saw a snake in the road that was around 5 FEET LONG!

Beautiful views of Soda Canyon. Ranger Jackie was very funny and informative. My mother was able to do the ladders and tunnels. Would rate hike as easy. Kivas and structures were stunning! So worth the $5. Also saw some hawks circling around the canyon!

11 days ago

Simple trail, not much of a hike. Started in the morning on the way to Balcony House. Beautiful structures not far from each other. Saw a couple of deer. Great way to start the day. Parking is limited, but you get to walk right next to the buildings.

Good views. Fun hike. Last half is an easy stroll. Great hike to get acclimated. I would rate easy. Minimal elevation change and no real switchbacks or taxing terrain. Good for families

Easy walk for some pretty views. Overall not as scenic.

I took my four-year-old with me. The $5 is worth it. There is a 30ft ladder you climb followed by ruins followed by a tunnel you crawl through followed by two 15 ft ladders. I'd recommend watching the history video at the museum first.

Loved this trail so much a did it once in the evening and then the next morning for sunrise. Both times I had the trail all to myself which was nice.

22 days ago

Good hike which gives you a sense of the landscape, not just the original dwellings. Enjoyed passing the dwellings and hugging the side of the drop off taking in great views until we switched directions and walked along the top. Not a difficult hike, but we started in the early mooning. Saw some recent graffiti, which was disappointing.

22 days ago

Not much of a hike, but a great informative tour of the dwellings. Some ladder use is required, but it is easy.

Quick and easy walk to the lookout point with some great views of the mesa. Pretty straight forward and flat, parking at the trailhead and not many people on the trail, which separates into a small loop towards the end.

Do the whole loop around the badger sites for some great views of cliff dwellings. This area is not monitored much and is burned up pretty bad but if you’re into ancient ruins take the walk.

Can be a bit scrambly at times but after the glyphs it’s a cakewalk. Beyond all beauty. Great walk.

1 month ago

Hiked this 6-16 had slight rain but almost had the ruins to ourselves

Trail closed when we were there, but at the beginning of the trailhead you can see it across the canyon and it’s the closest dwelling without hiking to that you can see.

Quick trail and you can see the cliff dwellings.

***check in with the visitor center to book your guided tour if you want to walk through the cliff dwellings*** Well worth the $5.
This park was amazing. We saw the balcony house at 12 and the cliff house at 2 and it was sufficient time to get to the next as well as time well spent. We ended spending the entire day here.

1 month ago

Absolutely amazing place to watch the sun set, don't miss it

Amazing trail with beautiful views

Nice walk shady walk down into the canyon, the petroglyphs are awesome to see. Rock scramble on the way out and the walk across the Mesa back to museum. Would definitely do again.

Completed this last summer. Ranger was grouchy and really ruined the experience. Trail, although a little difficult in places, was in great shape, well preserved and maintained. This is a Ranger-guided tour.

A beautiful, “challenging” hike. Wear good footing and be prepared the squeeze. The views are indescribably beautiful. :)

You will not be disappointed. Amazing tour.

Amazing views and lots of interesting stone footpaths. Definitely a must do if you're in Mesa Verde.

5$ guided tours of the largest cave dwelling in the park. Ranger James was an amazing guide and gave great insight into the parks history. One of the rangers ahead of us even played a native American song on the flute and it gave me chills. Definitely a must see spot in the park.

1 month ago

Hike was really nice. My wife & I took our three year old with us. We went out late afternoon where it wasn't too hot. Nice views on the walk down, but a little challenging walking back up. Not that crowded around this time.

Lovely trail! I love the views.

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