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Best bird watching trails in Pike National Forest, Colorado

15,047 Reviews
Explore the most popular bird watching trails in Pike National Forest with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.
Map of bird watching trails in Pike National Forest, Colorado
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Top trails (105)
#1 - The Crags Trail
Pike National Forest
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(1259)
Length: 4.8 mi • Est. 2 h 29 m
Please note: the road to trailhead may close seasonally, extending the length of the trail. Please research prior to your visit. Sometimes granite erodes horizontally into monumental slabs resembling stacks of gigantic red pancakes. Not too far away the same kind or rock erodes vertically into colossal collections of cusps, ready to take a bite out of any clouds that venture too close to the earth. A few miles south of Divide CO, this kind of rock formation is called "The Crags." The hike out to the granite dome (another kind of erosive pattern in this neck of the woods) from which you can view these stunning features is only two miles long. The trail is well marked (#664) and well travelled. In fact, this trek is so popular with area residents that the Forest Service just finished building a new trailhead parking area. Along the trail you'll pass through forests of enormous quaking aspen, and you'll trace the track of the beginnings of Four Mile Creek. At the end of the trail, you'll surmount a wind swept dome from which you can gaze at the Rampart Range, Ute Pass, and the whole of the Catamount Creeks drainage, including the blue reservoirs that capture and control their release. This is the perfect hike for newcomers to the Colorado Springs area, not too long and not too much altitude. You can make the four miles out and back in less than two hours, but only if you don't succumb to the temptation to remain on the top of the mountain gawking and the scenery and marveling at the brazen Whisky Jack Jays that populate the wind twisted Bristle Cone Pines. Show more
#2 - Pikes Peak via Barr Trail
Pike National Forest
hardYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(802)
Length: 24 mi • Est. Multi-day
The trail is wide and very accessible from the ascension and descension standpoint. The last mile is the hardest and takes a lot of stamina to conquer the final walk across the boulder field. $10/day parking fee.Show more
#3 - Shelf Lake Trail
Pike National Forest
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(408)
Length: 6.8 mi • Est. 3 h 43 m
Note: Guanella Pass Rd closes seasonally around Nov 26 and reopens on Memorial Day Weekend. The closure includes the section between Naylor Lake and Burning Bear Campground. For more information, please see https://www.fs.usda.gov/detail/arp/recreation/?cid=stelprdb5292500 A beautiful hike to a lake on a high bench above timberline. The lake is often ice-bound until the end of June. The trailhead recently moved about a half mile south, which is indicated on the map shown here. The road leading to the trailhead can be difficult for 2WD vehicles. 4WD with decent ground clearance is recommended. Show more
#4 - Blodgett Peak
Pike National Forest
hardYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray Star(958)
Length: 3.4 mi • Est. 2 h 49 m
Blodgett Peak Trail is a taste of true Colorado open space with great views. The trail is located within Blodgett Peak Open Space, which is part of the greater Pike National Forest. The trailhead is located off of West Woodmen Road in the heart of the of the Mountain Shadows neighborhood with an already spectacular view of the black forest and the air force academy below. The beginning of the trail has the appearance of a relatively moderate trafficked wide spanning dirt road but quickly turns into steep inclines that increase in height with each step. The open space is home to a variety of plant and animal species. You will see plenty of Douglas Fir, scrub oak, and ponderosa pine on the way up to the summit. If you are lucky, you may even see a peregrine falcon, an endangered species that has made the area home. Once at the top, Blodgett Peak summit offers incredible views of Colorado Springs below. This is a challenging hike due to the vast amounts of loose gravel piled up on steep hillsides making it particularly slick and at points. Its is important that you pay close attention to the main route as it is easy to veer off path. It is best to arrive at the trailhead early, as the parking lot has a limited amount of parking spots, excluding availability to park on the road beside it.Show more
#5 - Mount Democrat via Kite Lake Trail
Pike National Forest
hardYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(448)
Length: 3.8 mi • Est. 2 h 54 m
NOTE: The peak of Mount Democrat is private property. The owner has generously granted access to the peak, provided hikers stay on the designated trail, follow Leave No Trace principals, and avoid the summit of Bross. Please note that the road leading to this trailhead closes in the winter under snowy conditions. Please check with the Forest Service before visiting this trail. Fee is $5 per vehicle. Show more
#6 - Rampart Reservoir via Rainbow Gulch Trail
Pike National Forest
easyYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(624)
Length: 3.4 mi • Est. 1 h 33 m
#7 - Pancake Rocks and Horsethief Falls Trail
Pike National Forest
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(535)
Length: 6.7 mi • Est. 3 h 56 m
Hiking on the back side of Pikes Peak This is a popular place in the summer - easily 20 cars in the parking area around the trailhead. The trail is covered most of the time, and the pine, spruce and aspen trees create a shimmering mosaic of light and sound. Then occasionally the forest opens to reveal stunning views of near and distant mountains covered by an ocean of blue sky. The two terminal points of the hike (the falls and the rocks) are also worth the effort it takes to reach them.Show more
#8 - Raspberry Mountain Trail via Ring the Peak Trail
Pike National Forest
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(571)
Length: 5.2 mi • Est. 2 h 32 m
Please note: The gate to access the trailhead is seasonally closed. Open in summer and closed in winter. Exact dates vary with snowfall. The hike to the top of Raspberry Mountain is a pleasant six mile jaunt (round trip) through the Pike National Forest. The trail is wide and smooth, most of it shaded by tall dark Colorado Spruce. Sentinel Point and the northernmost of the Sibling Spires are visible occasionally about four miles to the south, whetting your appetite for the "Big View" available at the summit, when the Crags, Pike's Peak and the Catamount Reservoirs spread across the horizon's southeastern quadrant. Early morning trekkers will have the best light for views to the north and west as well (and will be less likely to get short changed by storms in the summer). The hike begins with short, steep switchbacks. Then, it levels out through a meadow and gentle forest floors. Eventually, you'll turn right on the forest road after crossing a creek. After a short uphill walk, you will turn left, leaving the Ring the Peak trail. From here, it is a relatively intense and mostly uphill climb to the top. Definitely make sure you come prepared on this hike and check the weather forecast before heading out.Show more
#9 - Hoosier Pass Loop
Pike National Forest
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(489)
Length: 2.8 mi • Est. 1 h 36 m
#10 - Eagles Peak Trail
Pike National Forest
hardYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(537)
Length: 3.6 mi • Est. 2 h 52 m
A popular hike up the dominant peak in the vicinity of the cadet area. Though it is shown on the maps as North Peak, most call it Eagle Peak. If you attempt to hike this trail during winter, micro spikes and walking poles are highly recommended.Show more
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