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Stanley Canyon Trail

HARD 222 reviews
#8 of 128 trails in

Stanley Canyon Trail is a 5.8 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Colorado Springs, Colorado that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as difficult. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from May until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

DISTANCE
5.8 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
1745 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dogs on leash

birding

hiking

nature trips

trail running

walking

forest

views

wild flowers

wildlife

rocky

This trail is only accessible if you or someone with you has a military ID or upon approval of military police at the guard post. Picture the "wall" of the side of a chocolate layer cake. Imagine making one knife cut down through that wall. Pull out your imaginary knife (so you won't get hurt) and gaze into the slit you've created. Now transfer this image to the front range of the Rocky Mountains, behind the Air Force Academy, near Colorado Springs. This is Stanley Canyon. Trail #707 leaves the trailhead parking lot on the west side of the Academy grounds and leads you UP the right (north) side of the canyon to the Stanley Canyon Reservoir about two miles away. In the first mile of the trail, you'll climb about 1200 ft. This is steep. The pathway is decomposed granite, except where it's solid granite. The solid sections are not long, but they can be tricky, especially if they're wet. As you climb, you'll reach platforms where you can rest and look back to the east toward the Academy and Colorado Springs. About half way along, you link up with the stream and parallel its course the rest of the way. The outstanding feature of this hike are the rock formations in the canyon walls; take plenty of time to observe them. After the first mile, you'll reach the top of the canyon. The path levels out, mostly, for the final trek up to the reservoir. This last section takes you through pine forests and aspen meadows. The reservoir is not large, but it is lovely.

5 days ago

Beautiful and challenging hike but the resovoir is drained.

11 days ago

hiking
17 days ago

18 days ago

One of my favorites!

hiking
18 days ago

Great mix of challenging trail, great views, scrambling, and a bit of danger. So surprised I didn't see a bear on this trail. I see many families on this trail but I wouldn't say it's a trail for beginners.

Bring food for a picnic at the top by the reservoir.

hiking
19 days ago

Challenging, loved hiking this and would definitely recommend.

hiking
22 days ago

hiking
26 days ago

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26 days ago

hiking
27 days ago

hiking
28 days ago

hiking
1 month ago

1 month ago

If you'd like to voice your opinion about Stanley Canyon call either Kim Mutchler 719-668-8793 or Keith Rylie (or Andy Fuches) 719-448-4800 option 4 then hold. CS utilities said because the dam is compromised and they don't utilize the water benefits they will not refill. With 1.3 billion in marijuana sales in 2016 I don't think this should even be a question.

hiking
2 months ago

hiking
2 months ago

The hike was fun - great views as people have mentioned. The reservoir was completely drained so the path ended at a very large mudhole with a bunch of dead fish, which was a bummer. If they allow the reservoir to fill back up, then it would definitely be a 5 star.

hiking
2 months ago

hiking
2 months ago

2 months ago

Great canyon views!