Explore the most popular wildlife trails near Grand Junction with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Hiked from lower monument via the wedding trail to the upper monument and back. Approx 12 miles round trip. Would highly recommend! Views are incredible, terrain was easily managed by an amateur hiker like me. Start early while it's still cool out (I went 9/16) because it does get pretty warm during day. Bring LOTS of water as well. We did happen to see one big horn sheep too.

The path is beautiful and well maintained but the scenery definitely is not. Love that this trail begins and ends at a brewery though. Cheers!

road biking
29 days ago

Rode Rim Rock Dr from the east entrance to the west entrance, and then finished the 'Tour of the Moon' loop via public roads Broadway, S Broadway and S Camp Rd. The route outside the park is well-signed. Traffic was light on this weekday ride, and the views were awesome. Lights are required due to 3 tunnels.

1 month ago

Thanks everyone for their reviews on this place. I’d call it an easy to moderate trail depending on if you add on extra legs. Lots of trails to explore. No tree cover and it can get hot. Loved the trail and views. A very nice mountain bike park that allows hikers and horses. I did see a sign stating no E-Bikes. Overall nice place to explore and nice views.

1 month ago

Nice way to see some of CNM's formations up close. Some shade along the trail but not a ton, so lots of water and starting early are musts in August. Unfortunately, not much wildlife our morning. We started at the upper trailhead and went to Independence Monument (~3.5 miles) before turning around and heading back. Note that this trail is ~12 miles round-trip (upper to lower trailhead or vice versa, then back) and not 6.8 or 10.9 as listed here.

1 month ago

My family and I loved it !

2 months ago

This is one of my favorite hikes in the valley. I quit often see the big horn sheep in this valley. It always takes a lot longer to do this hike when I stop and watch the sheep.

a nice hike into a shallow canyon and out again. I rate it on the low end of moderate. nice view of Grand junction and Fruita. this is also be a good bike trail for the beginner to intermediate rider. very close to Grand junction.

Hot one today. 98 degrees at 3 pm!!! Still a great trail with tons of variety.

on Rim Rock Drive

3 months ago

Nice afternoon drive with great views Grandchildren found lots to explore

3 months ago

This is a seriously fun trail for biking. Shuttle it!

scenic driving
3 months ago

Beautiful drive. Lots of view points, hiking trails to keep you going all day. Hiked 5 of the shorter hikes during the 5 hour drive on the way home

Spectacular views! A challenge but definitely worth it. Plan ahead, stop at the Colorafo National Monument visitor center or the BLM office and get a map. Road from CMN to the trailhead (upper) is steep and rocky, and you won't get all the way to the trailhead unless you have serious high clearance 4WD. I got within about 3/4 mile in a Forester. Minimal road and trail markings; map and a hiking app essential. Hike is mostly flat with a couple (short) steep and "are you serious?!!" portions. At the "first arch" sign, find the trail to the right to descend the mesa and hike around the backside. As soon as you round the end of the mesa you will begin seeing to the 7-9 arches. I was told you can't make it a loop so round-trip was 6.5 miles; but a (younger!) group I met on the way back was told you can scramble back up just past the first (last) arch. Oh, well! Watch the weather. I had some overcast and it was great -- but if sunny it would be incredibly hot. And the road could be impassible if muddy.

4 months ago

This is definitely not a moderate hike. There were some sketchy ledges where you have be very careful and make sure you have a really good grip. Granted, we had a 30 lbs pack because we were backpacking so if you're just doing a day hike it would probably be easier. Also, bring lots and lots of water. It gets very hot and there are no sources of water. Whatever you think you'll need, double it. It was a very pretty hike with lots of beautiful scenery and not a lot of people on the trail. Overall, we had a blast.

Footnote: With lightweight packs and trail running shoes made it a 5.2 slab free solo climb.

Great hike with fantastic views of red sandstone walls and formations. We found the trail pretty easy to navigate other than when we arrived at Pollack Canyon. What helped us immensely is that we saw the trail sign in the bottom of the canyon which helped us navigate down the cliff on a trail marked with cairns to the trail sign. When going or coming, it is helpful to look for cairns and the trail sign in the canyon to help you navigate. We also found climbing through the 1st arch to be about a 5.2 free solo climb. Short but definitely not for someone without rock climbing experience. The weather on our hike was moderate with cloud cover most of the day. Even with that we each drank about 3 liters of water. Definitely worth the hike but also very challenging for someone who’s not used to navigating a trail and does not like exposure.

on Rattlesnake Arches Trail

4 months ago

Beautiful hike but not well marked at all. Bring plenty of water and be careful when getting on slanted rocks to locate trail, slipped on loose rock and broke my leg on this trail 3 miles in! My friend and I were so lost trying to get me out. Trails need to be marked better.

Absolutely beautiful hike! A few points I will make, I would say this is closer to 15 miles round trip so BE PREPARED! Double the water you think you need and allow for 7-8 hours for round trip. The trail is not well marked in many places, we were lost for half of a very terrible hour. The way out is worth the effort, the way back is tiresome. Not sure I’ll do this again. A gps device is highly recommended for this hike.

Wide variety of opinions on this trail. I found it to be a destination hike. I didn't expect much to see enroute to the arch but instead found it to be gorgeous all the way in. A lot of varied scenery, nice canyons, overlooks with views. I also found the trail easy to follow and had no trouble staying on route.

I would agree I would not try to climb out unless experienced with class 5 climbing. Further the effort to ascend under the arch and then descend again back to the trail would not be worth the energy expended doing it.

Overall a great hike. Recommend to all.

4 months ago

Lovely views while hiking the canyon ridge. Got completely lost after turning right at the R1 sign hiked past the sign with some difficult rock climbs up and down with an overnight pack. Lost the trail
Several times and never found our way down into the canyon. I wonder if the sign was incorrect? App didn’t seem to be working at the tome. If we are ever back in western co will try it again!

4 months ago

The trail is great with some incredible views of the valley. However, the hike was no joke. Moderate is a very kind way of putting it. Some of the climbs were fairly intense and the markers were scarce. If you plan on doing this hike know the following:
1. The hike is closer to 14-15 miles if you are starting from the PB parking lot.
2. Take whatever water you think is appropriate, double that and then bring more. Trust me.
3. Allow for at least 6 hours to complete.
4. The arches are over rated IMO. The views of the valley just prior to reaching them were way better.
5. Dont listen to someone if they say you can climb "through" the final arch. You cant
6. Bring a gps device. The trail markings are non existent in a few critical areas. Without one you wont be able to find where you need to go

Enjoyable trail system

Started from the Pollock Bench TH. Great views of the monument but relatively boring trek first 1.8 miles. after that point, thus trail is amazing. lots of walking into canyons directly without switchbacks. trail is hard to identify at points up until the last 3 miles to the destination point. used my wits and the app to find the trail when needed. I'd say the trail is about 25% shady, I picked a day with good cloud cover. I opted to climb through rainbow arch, wasn't as bad as I thought and took my time as there were some solid wind gusts. Once through the arch, go to the right for one last climb and follow the trail. Nice elevation gain throughout, about 13.25 miles out and back with the shortcut. Very peaceful and serene....only saw 3 hikers. One of my all time faves so far! Only negatives: Seeing orange peels thrown on the trail and dog feces. Pick up after yourselfs jerks!

5 months ago

Don’t pay attention to the hard rating for this if you are hiking. It would definitely be hard on a bike, but for hiking it’s in the easy/moderate range. Easily done by myself and my wife and we’re causal hikers at best. Great views of the surrounding area!

Do the wedding trail side first as it is a harder trek. It’s a really nice trail.

Fantastic trail! I did this trail a few years ago and found it hard to follow. However, with the new signs, following "R1" all the way made it easy to get there and back without getting lost. I think this can be done in about 4 hours if you know the trail and can move quickly. Moderate to difficult in some parts. Definitely bring water and food. Might not be great for some kids or dogs with the class 3-4 downclimbing sections. Otherwise, amazing trail in the spring.

This is a great overnight backpacking trip. Difficult trail to follow once you drop down into the canyon. Didn't make it to the arches due to the fact we lost the trail, so we wound up camping over the lip of the canyon once we picked the trail back up. There's a good bit of cairns to watch out for - some are placed where you shouldn't go and some are placed where you should go, so they can be deceiving. There's some scrambling involved and if you bring dogs, be prepared to help them scramble as well. Bring water and high protein snacks because you're going to spend a lot of energy in certain areas. Worked up a good sweat even when the temperature was in the mid 50's.

With all that being said, the views along the way are pretty amazing! It's well worth it. Going back again this weekend to make it to the arches.

6 months ago

Took tabeguache to moto to ravens ridge to kurts lane and back. Qualify this as easy. Found a trail I can run on the weekends. Some great views. Trail is well marked...used the app once for directions.

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