Explore the most popular river 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.

1 hour ago

Not the most spectacular views, but an awesome hike overall! I used this as a good first backpack of the season. There was water along most of the hike and there were some ups and downs, but nothing too crazy. The first and last 3rd of the hike was shrouded in trees and the in between is spent mostly in an exposed valley. I was perfectly happy with my decision to take the loop counterclockwise, but I was more out there to get some exercise and fresh air. I also had two dogs with me and they had a great time, it’s a great space for dogs.

Beautiful trail with lovely reservoirs. Medium traffic.

Coming from flat Florida and being my first elevation climb, easy isnt how I would say the hike is. Solid Moderate. easy to follow trails. Great views, lots of fun. While do it again!
tip: TONS of bugs up on the watch. Take a tower to protect your mouth and nose or be prepared for a low protein snack!

1 day ago

A challenging hike. I felt ecstatic upon reaching the summit. Great sense of accomplishment. However there are a couple detail you need to know before attempting this hike. First, there is no parking at the trail head. You should park at the Visitor's Center. From Academy Dr there is a road not far from the Visitor's Center that takes you to the trail head. You will see a trail to the left as you go up the road. You won't notice the trail head sign until you walk into it a short distance. After about a half mile the trail becomes confusing. There are some false trails that will just wear you out and lead to nowhere. The thing to do is follow along the stream which is on the left. You will eventually see the trail which will take you across the stream over some rocks. As you get closer to the summit there is another false trail that peters out after about a quarter mile of less. Instead of taking that trail go to the left up another trail that is steeper and goes toward the summit. The only real views are on the summit.

Out and back 2.5 total hike with 1000 ft gain. Beautiful long vistas at several points. Very few wildflowers or birds. Watch tower is an unusual historical element with impressive 360 degree views. We ate lunch in a green fairytale meadow anchored by two opposing granite walls.

Great little hike! Mostly switchbacks to the top and it’s highly trafficked. It was super windy the day we went so make sure to bring layers (it was especially windy on the stairs to the tower). The park ranger was at the Lookout tower! Well worth it! Beautiful views!

It's a fairly easy hike. No steep ascents just gradual climbing all the way to the lookout. Enjoyed the many huge rock outcroppings and treelined trail.

2 days ago

Awesome hike, the Barr Trail is well maintained. The Barr Camp is an excellent place to stay the night and relax. Just remember to bring plenty of warm dry clothes.

stand atop boulder at top, take in Pikes directly South. The Rockies to the NW
great place to Airbnb- chipita park, Cascade Falls.

4 days ago

Pretty steep in the beginning but do-able. Short trail with a pretty waterfall at the end. Nice and relaxing. If you go early, you will hardly see any people

I went early on a foggy day and it was great! Had the trail to myself the entire way up - several large groups were at the bottom around 10:30am. I’ll definitely be back on a clear morning

Easy to navigate, awesome views from the tower.

Wonderful trail

Beautiful, easy, popular hike.

Great Hike, low traffic, amazing views

awesome hike, steep sandy areas, views of river all along hike are amazing.

Loved the trail today with my pup. The drive in is long and very different for this new Coloradan. Trail is pretty easy and the views are amazing. Saw lots of hikers and dogs out.

10 days ago

Tough trail, but well worth the effort! If not for other posted reviews, not quite sure we would have made it. Once you leave the creek and start climbing, the trail becomes pretty nonexistent. We went into it assuming we'd get lost as others have commented due to it being poorly marked. Despite our best efforts to follow the trail map, it only gets you so close. There are so many random trails up there, but they all appear to eventually end up in the same place. Definitely watch for the cairns, they are your best resource once you start making your way around the dome to begin to climb. The arch takes a bit of effort to get down to; to the right and down the dome face towards the organ pipe rock will get you there. We didn't see anyone else out there until we were finally heading down to begin the hike back. Great workout, would do it again. Would not recommend for novice hikers

Beautiful hike but lots of people. Guess that's anywhere in Colorado on a Saturday. I'd go back and hammock up in the trees!!

This trail is closed

Loose rock

New plant growth at risk for damage from hikers

Sharp pieces of metal. Not safe for dogs or clueless hikers

High risk for danger and low chance of rescue + heavy prosecution

Do not disturb the neighborhood attempting to go here

Allow this beautiful place to heal and respect the rules. They are there for a reason. Don’t be that guy who gets hurt and further shuts this place down even more.

13 days ago

Only did a part of it but it was gorgeous. There are plenty of people but it didn’t seem overcrowded. Plenty of “river access” spots to go directly to the river.

14 days ago

This is a beautiful trail along the Platte River. WE wondered why it was rated as hard until we got to about mile 3.5 and it was a scramble to get up so we decided to turn back. There are some places that are extremely narrow and the footing is soft. Hoping to go back and complete this at some point. The trail has markings but they are not well defined and we did stray a few times from the trail unnecessarily.

14 days ago

Awesome hike with massive views of the surrounding mountains at the Fire Tower. There are tons of dispersed campsites and other trails nearby.

The road to the TH is pretty rough in certain spots. Nice hike up and easy trail to follow. The view at the top is amazing!

15 days ago

I expected more based on other reviews. It’s an ok trail with some nice parts - the trail is clearly marked and easy to traverse. But beyond that the loop to the left is largely a steady incline for 2 miles that moves along - or near - a power line; it’s not as busy as the other portion of the trail, and I didn’t see one person the first 2.5 miles.

The loop to the right has a nice grove of aspens and is an easy stroll with some stream views but is much busier with mountain bikers and hikers - it has that “I expect to see plenty of people” feel to it. The trailhead to the beginning of the loop has dog poo scattered here and there, which is sadly the case with most trails.

Dirt road to the trailhead, most cars should be fine. The trail itself had snow/mud and was a bit slippery but nothing too bad, we did it in regular hiking shoes and were fine, just mind your step. This is a gorgeous hike and the views from the top of the tower are a must see!

As previously mentioned, the roads are good all the way to the trail head. It was a great hike with an amazing 360 degree view from the fire tower. Make sure to wear bug repellent, as there are swarming bugs when you reach the tower lookout area. Unfortunately, there's a lot of graffiti written on what used to be information signs- now completely unreadable. Additionally, it's a pack-in pack-out so make sure you bring all of your trash (and dog poop) back out of the hike when you leave.

Very steep and difficult right off the bat.Trail was very muddy in some parts and still quite a bit of snow. The view from the top is amazing! Unfortunately, no actual falls as they were buried under snow. We could hear the rushing water, but never actually saw any. A wonderful woman directed us over to an amazing lookout after a steep but short rock ascent-made the whole hike worth it and I so appreciate her.

I love this Trail gone on it many times. I only wish people would keep their dogs on the leash and pick up after them as there is dog poop all over the trail. love to take my dogs on the Trail but never have them off leash. met some people on the hike who had their dog off-leash they didn't even notice that their dog had turned around and went the other way until I said something. then the lady got mad because I said she needs to keep her dog on the leash. otherwise beautiful Trail.in the winter it's covered in ice and the views are well worth the hike up. nice place to have a picnic

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