Susan G. Bretag Trail and Palmer Trail Loop is a 2.5 mile heavily trafficked loop trail located near Colorado Springs, Colorado that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

2.5 miles
321 feet

dogs on leash

kid friendly



horseback riding

mountain biking

nature trips

trail running


partially paved


wild flowers



The Palmer Trail is a less-traveled route in the Garden of the Gods that travels along the forested hills on the western edge of the park. Still great views of the rock formations, but without nearly the tourists.

1 month ago

A terrific trail to view and appreciate the beauty contained within Garden of the Gods Park. Not only outstanding scenery but definitely less traveled than the central garden paths. Be certain to keep a watchful eye out for Bighorn Sheep on the Northern portion of the trail. Plenty of photo opportunities along this trail featuring plenty of fabulous red rock formations.

1 month ago

The Palmer Trail and the Susan G. Bretag trail wrap around the outside of the park to offer some great distant views of the rock formations! Great opportunity to get away from the crowds.

2 months ago

So beautiful. Park in the Nothtrailhead Parking lot and cross the street to start the trail. :) if you start on the right, you'll come out on the left and vice versa. follow some of the recordings.

4 months ago

Beautiful views of the formations. Early morning or weekdays are the best way to avoid heavy traffic.

5 months ago

Great little trail with one great view after the other.

5 months ago

Not a very difficult hike. Park is pretty crowded and this trail is a nice break from the people.

6 months ago

I started from the north parking lot and went through the inside/middle area to get some quick shots of the formations, then went to the outside trail (non-paved one) to complete the loop. I included the Rocks and Vistas Garden Loop + Garden of the Gods Loop + Siamese Twins Loop within my hike. There wasn't many people on a Tuesday morning due to the high winds and snow so it was fairly empty. A great trail overall but definitely more of a touristy/nature style walk/hike instead of an actual hike. Also, on the outer loop where horses are used there is a lot of poop on the trails.

Hardly a hike but of course beautiful. Crowded due to tourism but what can you do, it’s quite the sight to see.

7 months ago

I would give it 5 stars for the views, however, have to take one back for being crowded and at parts, too "touristy", which is a good thing if you are a tourist, I suppose

7 months ago

Easy hike, moderate crowd, very well marked trails and easy to follow maps. Beautiful scenery!

9 months ago

Love this trail! Gorgeous views and easy enough that my 4yr old can enjoy it.

11 months ago

Spectacular view, easy to moderate trail.

Thursday, October 26, 2017

Beautiful!! These amazing rock formations will make you believe that there is more to human life.

Sunday, October 22, 2017

Not crowded at all so I loved that!

Sunday, September 03, 2017

So beautiful here!

Sunday, September 03, 2017

Fun trail. Not hard, great for visitors. Beautiful scenery. It was busy but not too busy.

Thursday, August 31, 2017

So beautiful!! A must-visit park for those visiting!

Thursday, August 24, 2017

This trail should be rated easy. Gets crowded in this park; this trail is a little less tourist-y but not by much.

Friday, August 04, 2017

Not very difficult. I would probably rate this hike as easy. The hike was pretty crowded. The trails are clearly marked with where you can and cannot go to climb. There is a point in the hike where you can take a small detour to see the Siamese Twins. The views are beautiful. Be sure to get there early, because parking is terrible.

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Fun trail that follows the same route as the horses take. Still get plenty of views of the rocks and a fair amount of shade for the first half of the trail. It's a lot more enjoyable than driving around the park. There were not too many people on the outer trail, and most of them were locals out trail running. Of course, once you loop into the rocks, there are a lot of tourists. I'd rate this as fairly easy.

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Legit good evening run trail. Awesome views at the peak of Palmer end of trail.

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Really enjoyed seeing the rocks at Garden of the Gods. The Palmer and Breytag trail was a good hike. We had trouble finding parking so we parked in area 10 and added the Ute trail onto the walk. Watch out for horses, it is a bit tight when they pass. (And they leave a mess behind, thus only 4 stars). The visitor center is real nice. The trails are not very well marked so take a photo of the trail map before you set off. Tip for first time visitors. Drive up the road across the street from the visitor center. Park at the first spot you can find and take your camera. Lots of good photo opportunities.

Friday, March 24, 2017


Sunday, March 12, 2017

Love this trail. Really nice if youre visiting or just starting out getting used to higher altitude. Once you're acclimated it's super easy but gets the blood flowing. Beautiful views and most dogs on leash. Amazing place to bring an active pup.

Monday, October 03, 2016

Great hike. First part is paved and easy and the second half is dirt and moderately challenging.

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

extremely busy but still stunning views. easy enough hike able to keep my legs from feeling like they're on fire.

Sunday, May 29, 2016

Fairly easy hike with well worn trails and some off trail areas. Beautiful scenery. Packed with people though.

Wednesday, May 04, 2016

Absolutely amazing!!! Definitely worth going to Garden of the Gods and hiking!! I will definitely do it again since I didn't get to do all the trails.

Sunday, May 01, 2016

A good time for me and my family

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Beautiful! It's a very easy to moderate hike depending on the route you take - we meandered quite a bit! Also, it wasn't crowded at all due to overcast skys (no complaints here!). Your pup will have to be on a leash for this hike but, most of the trails are wide enough for you to have them in 'heel' without issue.

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