National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) Ramble Trail

MODERATE 132 reviews
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National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) Ramble Trail is a 3.4 mile lightly trafficked loop trail located near Boulder, Colorado that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from April until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Distance: 3.4 miles Elevation Gain: 721 feet Route Type: Loop

dogs on leash

kid friendly


nature trips

trail running


bird watching


wild flowers

1 day ago

Fantastic trail, watching the storm roll in towards the end was really beautiful and the breeze made it worth it!

2 days ago

This is a great trail with a variety of beautiful plants and views. There were more trail options than I realized and signage was minimal, so I wished we'd brought a map. It was a hot day, but there were some shady spots here and there. A great hike for an easterner not used to the altitude!

30 days ago

Ooohkay. So we got to the lot at 9:33 after a failed attempt to go to first choice Eldorado Springs, and so we were grateful to have a place to go. We also tried Gregory Canyon in Boulder and that was an ish show. So we ended up here. PROS: Bathroom in the NCAR visitor center! Beautiful views CONS: Not well marked, but you will have signal (it is marked, but why is all trails calling this "Rambler"??? There is no such thing. I would rather call it what the trail connections are so you can follow along! Instead we had to pull out the map ALOT to make sure we were on the right path. TONS of people (I knew this though) Like someone else said, you walk for a bit behind people's backyards and it feels weird. When you get to the bottom of the NCAR street towards the end of the hike, you have to hike BACK UP THE HILL. But there is a trail, you have to cross the street and go up that side. Someone mentioned here they walked up the road... you don't have to do that! This was very difficult at the end of the hike for us (mainly the dogs!) so beware. I'm sorry, I didn't enjoy myself as much here, but it is pretty. Kohler Mesa is a great trail and close by. It saved us when we couldn't find a place to hike, but due to the piecemeal type hike, I am not sure I enjoyed myself as much as other hikes.

1 month ago

It was our first hike since moving to Denver from Charlotte. Our lungs held up good, a couple rough spots mostly at the start and finish. The finish was a killer as their wasn’t much shade and it was a little warm. Trail is in good condition and made for a nice afternoon.

Would have rated as easy except for the stretch from NCAR road to to parking lot. Parts were muddy but I enjoyed the number of options for add-ons

no shade
3 months ago

Muddy and hilly trail, very pretty trail!

Lots of people on a Sunday afternoon, but that was expected. The trail was muddy in a couple spots but not bad. Great views. I'd like to come back (if possible) and see the sunrise. The trail was a little uneven from people in the mud. Good stretches of hills then easy meandering areas. If you go clockwise from the Center then back around to the parking lot, 3.7 miles and the last stretch is a little bit of an incline, especially the first hike of the year.

5 months ago

Hiked on 1/13, after it snowed a day earlier. Most parts of the trail were snow-packed but not too slippery or icy. The back areas looked like a winter wonderland. Parts in the sun where the snow had melted were extremely muddy. Overall, a beautiful, easy-ish hike for a sunny winter day, we saw some other groups with dogs on the trail but it wasn’t crowded by any means.

10 months ago

Very strange trail. Parts of the loop you are in people's backyards other parts you're in the woods. Some of it isnt well marked while most of it is. I would definitely do the trail again but would suggest branching off the loop to mesa trail or skunk canyon instead. Definitely want to come back for those.

Sunday, July 15, 2018

Skunk canyon is always beautiful

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Beautiful trail. Giving it a 3 only because it dumps you out at the bottom of the hill on Table MESA by the NCAR sign and you have to walk the street all the way back up which was a disappointment.

Thursday, June 07, 2018

It wasn’t as bad as I thought. This was the first trail I did as a warm up

Tuesday, May 29, 2018

The last bit back up to the parking lot will really make you work for it!

Friday, May 18, 2018

Skunk canyon is a beautiful little spot in the foothills with green vegetation and striking flatirons in the background and of course NCAR is so cool!

Tuesday, January 02, 2018

Large black and white Great Dane no collar on trail now near water tank walking back to parking lot 4043143763

Sunday, October 08, 2017

Great loop! Get there early to park on the street

Monday, September 11, 2017

Beautiful trail, but watch out for rattle snakes! We had to turn around halfway through because there was one in the middle of the trail that wouldn't move (it was sunning)- other than that it was great!

Sunday, September 10, 2017

Great loop, easy run!

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Lots of kids. Crowded.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Great hike! Did the full loop and will for sure be back again. I recommend it to anyone just beginning hiking. It's a great easy trail with beautiful views and wonderful photo ops!

Sunday, April 23, 2017

A good hike if you're looking for an easy trail with little incline. Took less than two hours and had a variety of views throughout. Dog friendly (on leash).

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Took less than 2 hours. Nice views. Well marked but lots of trails, a map/app was a good call.

Thursday, March 30, 2017

easy and comfortable trail

Saturday, March 25, 2017

Really enjoyed the trail, especially the first half. Did the full loop and gps registered closer to 4 miles. Also the last piece was a bit steeper than expected.

Sunday, March 12, 2017

Trails were well- maintained and traffic was light. Beautiful sunrise views.

Sunday, September 04, 2016

One of my very favorites. Make sure to take pictures of the trail maps as there are a few loops

Monday, August 29, 2016

Made a 7.5 mile loop starting at the homestead trail. Was an easy to slightly moderate hike. Much preferred the scenery/landscape on the homestead & shadow canyon side of the loop to this side.

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