Bear Canyon Trail to Bear Peak West Ridge

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Boulder Open Space

Bear Canyon Trail to Bear Peak West Ridge is a 6.3 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Boulder, Colorado that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, running, rock climbing, and horses and is best used from May until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Distance: 6.3 miles Elevation Gain: 1,597 feet Route Type: Out & Back

dogs on leash

hiking

horseback riding

rock climbing

running

forest

views

wild flowers

wildlife

rocky

snow

washed out

If you’re trying to get to Bear Peak, this is the long way! But beauuuuutiful.

hiking
rocky
14 days ago

Solid view of Bear Peak and Neble Horn at the end.

hiking
icy
muddy
snow
3 months ago

hiking
muddy
snow
6 months ago

This one doesn't summit a peak! if you want to, factor in more time for the bear trail loop! muddy at the start and a little snowy on the second half of the trail! the weather was warm after the snow so micro-spikes wasn't totally necessary. not much of a view at the end of this particular trail as it just gets you to the start of other trails! nice hike through the valley though!

Beautiful wooded trail with sun and tree cover. Fairly easy, but some ice and snow cover in November. Incline up is fairly steady but not steep.

hiking
rocky
8 months ago

hiking
over grown
rocky
scramble
9 months ago

I really liked this hike. I thought there was an equal amount of shade and sun and an equal amount of ranging difficulties. There were some parts overgrown so maybe long pants would be better but it wasn’t too bad.

hiking
11 months ago

I recommend this trail to anyone looking for a nice hike that isn’t too short or too long. We are beginner hikers and he 6.4 miles was perfect! The trail was a mix of dirt road (kind of a bummer) and narrower areas that were a lot of fun. We saw a rattlesnake but it darted away from us.

Wed May 22 2019

Lovely drive up and pretty challenging having not gotten used to the elevation. But make sure to stop at one of the locations to get a permit. It's only $5 per day or $25 annual. I spent a little time hunting. the locations are here: https://bouldercolorado.gov/osmp/open-space-parking-permits-and-fees

Sun May 12 2019

It is not Bear Canyon to summit Bear Peak. after a little over 3mi the direction ends at an intersection of Bear Peak Westridge Trail and Green Bear Trail. If you check the map, you can calculate the distance from where this direction ends to the summit of Bear Peak and it's quite a hike with probably add somewhere around 1000 elevations. I went yesterday (5/12). The trail is good for trail running and I'm not sure why this is rated as hard.

hiking
muddy
snow
Sat Mar 23 2019

hiking
muddy
snow
Sun Mar 17 2019

Completed this trail along with Bear Peak Canyon Loop Trail and Bear Peak via NCAR.

hiking
Tue Oct 02 2018

Went to hike this today (10/2/18) and it's CLOSED until November 15th for trail construction. Tried to go anyway and it was fenced off with a construction worker watching the entrance in the middle of the day.

hiking
Thu Jun 14 2018

Beautiful hike. Made a wrong turn and ended up doing the canyon hike up to the next trail head and then on to Green Bear connecting to the Green Mtn trail. So glad it happened was an amazing views and the trail was a steady climb up to the trail head. Truly a hidden gem and worth the time.

hiking
Sat Feb 24 2018

didn't make it to our the peak the first weekend I tried (in the summer). then I did make it a few weeks later! and my little Chihuahua was a trooper. It took me about six hours round trip.

hiking
Tue Aug 22 2017

hiking
Mon Jun 19 2017

We started at the NCAR Trailhead; it was definitely longer than 6.6 miles but totally worth it. There are a ton of wildflowers in bloom along the trail right now too. If you plan on taking some of the alternate connecting trails make sure you look up trail closures, quite a few are closed at the moment.

Sun May 07 2017

Don't be fooled. The map shown for this hike is only through bear canyon. There's another mile or two plus another 1000ft gain to bear peak. You can see bear peak labeled on the map south of their marker. I did bear canyon to bear peak, then came down fern canyon. Fern canyon is shorted but significantly more vertical. Bear canyon is a much easier inclined on the way up. Fern is great for the way down. View at the top was well worth the journey.

Tue Oct 18 2016

This trail is not for the faint of heart if you're riding a horse. Trailhead does not allow horses so don't follow the directions to this one. Mesa Trail that leads to Bear Canyon Trail is fairly easy to travel but still challenging Bear Canyon Trail has a very challenging parts and some very scary parts. Trail is incredibly beautiful though a lot of it is in the trees with great views.

hiking
Mon Sep 05 2016

Closer to 8 mile RT from parking lot. Took just over 3 hours with kids 8 and up. Would rate it moderate for its long, steady climb. Will have to try to make it to Bear Peak another time.

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