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Deer Mountain Trail is a 6 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Estes Park, Colorado that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, nature trips, and horses and is best used from April until October. Horses are also able to use this trail.

Length 6.0 mi Elevation gain 1,400 ft Route type Out & Back
Hiking Horseback riding Nature trips Forest Views Wild flowers Wildlife Snow No dogs
Description
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Getting There

Reservations to enter the park will go on sale through Recreation.gov at 8 a.m. Mountain Time on Thursday, May 28. Reservations will be available to enter the park from June 4 through July 31. The next release will be on July 1, for the month of August and any remaining days that have not been booked for July. On August 1, reservations will be available for the month of September and any remaining days that have not been booked for August. On September 1, reservations will be available for the month of October and any remaining days in September that have not been booked. Permits issued using the reservation system will allow park visitors to enter the park within two-hour windows of availability between 6 a.m. through 5 p.m. This process will facilitate advance payment of entrance fees, minimize contact between park entrance station staff and visitors and limit congestion in parking lots. The permit system will apply to all areas of the park. In the initial opening phase, the park will open approximately 60 percent of the park’s maximum parking capacity or 4,800 vehicles (13,500 visitors) per day. Deer Mountain Trail is a great hike to Deer Mountain Peak that offers panoramic views from the top. The trail can be accessed at the Deer Mountain Trailhead off of Trail Ridge Road. The trail starts off in a valley and soon enters a steep forested area, dominated by species such as ponderosa pine. Once you enter the forested area, the trail has many switchbacks that ease into the elevation change. The trail is easy to follow until the last half mile or so. Finding the summit requires a steep little jaunt up to the top. Once at the Deer Mountain summit, you are rewarded with gorgeous views of Longs Peak, Moraine Park, Upper Beaver Meadows, and Estes Park. This is one of the many popular hiking trails in Rocky Mountain National park and there is limited parking in the parking area. It is advised to get there early to secure a parking spot. Many people on this trail underestimate it - make sure to bring plenty of water and hiking boots!

Limited amount of parking so get there early or hope for the best. I've noticed this is a popular hiking trail especially on weekends.

Colorado Tourism Office, 1625 Broadway, Suite 1700 , Denver, CO, 80202, Phone: 800-COLORADO

Directions from Estes Park: Follow Hwy 36 west past the Beaver Mountain Entrance Station to the Deer Mountain Trailhead, near the junction of Hwy 36 and 34.

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Reviews (1265)
Photos (1105)
Recordings (933)
Completed (2611)
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David McDonald
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSeptember 25, 2020
HikingGreat!

Relatively mild hike except for the last 0.2 mile stair climb to the summit. Nice 360 degree views. Beautiful fall hike with Aspens in brilliant yellow.

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Joe Grojean
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSeptember 15, 2020
Hiking
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Clark Cummings
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarSeptember 15, 2020
Hiking

A lot of work for an unspectacular view from the summit. It does give you a sense of accomplishment to be able to see for miles in all directions.

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alan Zhou
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSeptember 13, 2020
HikingGreat!

hidden jem.not crowded at all on 9.12. highly recommend.

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David Ka
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSeptember 12, 2020
Hiking
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Stephen Foley
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarSeptember 12, 2020
Hiking

Nice hike with great views both on the way up and at the top. Relatively easy. Saw deer on the way up which seemed fitting.

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Kyra Anderson
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarSeptember 12, 2020
HikingFeeGreat!IcySnow

This trail is a good one! There is a switchback, it will lead you to your left. The views were better on the way up as the fog was too dense as we summited. If you follow the trail after you checked out the views, it will not lead you back to the Deer Mountain trailhead. You must go down the way you came if youd like to return to your car.

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alka nand
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarSeptember 8, 2020
Hiking

Deer Mountain trail has some good views of the mountains but they were not that great today -,9/7/2020 because of the haze. Trail is relatively easy and is very well marked. This is one of the few day hike trails that are open. A lot of hikes are closed because of the fire. We are in our late fifties and we completed it in 4 hours.

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Jonathan Humphreys
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSeptember 7, 2020

Awesome early morning hike to see the sunrise!!

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Tiffany Cedillo
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSeptember 5, 2020
Hiking

DO IT.

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Anthony Lewandowski
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSeptember 4, 2020
Hiking
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Christa Pelton
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSeptember 4, 2020
HikingGreat!

Loved this trail- parking was almost full around 5:30am when we arrived. The short climb to the summit is tough but so worth it!! Views are phenomenal.

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Daria Laur
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSeptember 3, 2020
HikingGreat!
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Kelsey Emma
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 29, 2020
Hiking

Worth the trek up. The reviews actually confused me because the switchback was pretty easy to find so I thought it couldn’t be correct. Beautiful trail worth getting up early for!

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John Tight
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 25, 2020
Hiking

Great peak

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Tim Mellinger
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 25, 2020
HikingGreat!

Loved this trail! Not too difficult with superb views from the summit. I loved the beginning of the hike too! The ponderosa pines and open meadows are super peaceful and beautiful. There was one switchback where we saw several people went the wrong way as we were coming back down. These kids said they went like a mile or more off trail and had to turn around to find the trail again. But if you have a general idea of the lay of the trail not too hard to go the right way. Great great trail!! Smell the ponderosa pines too! Butterscotch and vanilla. Have fun!

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Reid Almand
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 23, 2020
Hiking
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Phillip Foster
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 21, 2020
Hiking

This was a great trail. Lots of walking but the climb is easy to do at a steady pace!

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Linde Bischak
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarAugust 20, 2020
Hiking

8/20/20. There’s paved parking along both sides of the road for roughly a dozen cars, plus some dirt spaces. I was the first car there at 5:30am, but half a dozen more were there by 6am. Nice trail, good views, lots of tree cover. There’s one big switchback about a mile in that I missed, whether due to it being before sunrise or just me not being awake yet. Oops. BUT enough people have made this mistake that there’s an incredibly difficult fix it trail that loops back. Remember that the actual route is a horse trail, so if you find yourself on a “trail” that would be pretty impassable for a horse you probably made the same mistake I did. There’s quite a bit of manure on the trail, but at least it’s a surefire way to know you’re going the right way. On the way back the switchback is super obvious and I have no idea how I missed it. So if you’re paying attention (and it’s light out), the trail is very clear and well marked. There’s wildlife if you’re looking—rabbits, deer, even a hummingbird. There are friendly chipmunks at the top, too—they’re shameless and will come right up to you looking for food. Great hike!

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Baker Thorpe
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 15, 2020
HikingGreat!

Amazing views at the top and lots of wildlife on the way up.

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Shawn McCandless
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 15, 2020
Hiking

We loved this hike. Not too steep, trail in good shape, mostly dirt with some rocks. We did it on a Saturday morning, starting at 9 and saw about 10-12 people each direction. Spectacular views! Not a lot of beetle kill here, so the forests are nice and shady.

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Mary Lams
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 14, 2020
Hiking

Lots of climbing-poles were helpful. Pretty at the summit.

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Alicia Root
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarAugust 12, 2020
Hiking

I’ve given this 4 stars. The first mile is meh and not terribly exciting, but once you get into the trees it’s really pretty and the view at the summit is worth it. There are a lot of switchbacks, and one major drawback was all the horse poop.

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Kelsey Duska
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarAugust 10, 2020
HikingGreat!

This is my first hike to rate 4 stars. I dropped a star because 1) everyone I met on the trail, including myself, got lost around the first mile. There’s an unmarked fork, and most people tend to go straight rather than switching back uphill (take the switchback!). 2) The hike is mostly switchbacks, so the view for the first two miles (and last two miles) stays about the same. Panoramic views from the top are gorgeous. Makes it all worthwhile!

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Chloe Lai
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarAugust 7, 2020
Hiking

Fairly easy & straightforward trail with pretty view up top. Got to trail before 6am and the spots on the side of the road quickly filled up. Saw a family with dogs on the top, rather shocking as you’d think people know pets are not allowed on trails in RMNP

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Christian Gallegos-Alarcón
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarAugust 6, 2020
Hiking

nice, a lot of people having lunch at the top

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Jeremy Writebol
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 3, 2020
Hiking

Beautiful hike. Great views of the entire park from the top. Be sure to pack plenty of water and be prepared for some steep ascents.

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