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

This trail is addicting. As you are doing it you wonder why you are putting yourself through it but the views along the way and the comraderie among the hikers on the way up is amazing. Once you make it to the top it is one of the most satisfying feelings and you can’t wait to do it again. The trail is maintained very well and has outhouses and a brick and mortar restroom in the gift shop/coffee house at the bottom of the trail. One of the best experiences I have had in CO so far.

Great hike & a fun run coming down the incline, be prepared to get drainage in sweat. Nevertheless it’s a great workout.

Great challenge but ran into a brown bear right near the end of Barr Trail.

hiking
5 days ago

Very crowded, but also some awesome type 2 fun!

It’s not fun while you are doing it, but once you get to the top it’s worth it! The views the whole way are breathtaking.

I’ve been coming here for any years and it’s still my favorite challenge! It’s very hard but it’s a great challenge

I’m hooked! I went once a year ago for the first time and it was incredibly hard. I’m 39 years old and very active. It took me at least 90 minutes and was very humbling to say the least. Went up again twice last week-first time took 48 minutes, second time it took 43. Hoping to crack 40 minutes next time. Tips-don’t look up! Just press forward-looking up can crush you! Also-watch our for people coming down the incline. Most people take the trail down but there are some who run down the incline or end up turning around and going back down. I ran down the Barr Trail and it took me 35 minutes. Go early-it gets crowded very quickly so you want to beat the rush-and the heat! This is not for the faint of heart but is well worth it! Just reaching the top is an accomplishment.

Summited pikes peak for the first time on Saturday, June 16. I came from sea level 3 days before the hike and hiked it with 2 people from Co.

The trail is very well marked and easy to follow. The views are spectacular. Barr high camp is really great and the bathrooms are very clean. Overall this was an amazing first 14er.

Below is a detail of my experience, what I brought with me and how it went.

We started at 6 am and actually did the incline first and picked up the Barr trail at the top of the incline. The incline was very challenging, by we made it up to the top by 7:10 and picked up the Barr trail around mile 3.

Miles 3-6 were a comfortable increase incline. Nothing too strenuous and a welcome break after the incline. At mile 6 we reached the Barr High Camp. It was a very nice place to stop. We made it there by 9:15. The elevation there was around 10,000 and for me coming from sea level, to this point I was feeling fine.

We left Barr Camp around 9:45. The next three miles were slightly steeper than miles 3-6 but not too strenuous. My pace was slower than miles 3-6 as I wanted to control my breathing and not gas out before the last three miles.

We stopped at 12,000 feet for a short break as after that, you are above the tree line. At that point there is also a shelter if needed. We got there around 11:25. Then we started off for the last three miles. These were definitely the hardest. Everyone told us the last two were the hardest but for me, the third to last was the worst. Possibly because I was expecting the last 2 to be horrific. It took us 45 minutes to get to the 2 mile mark. At that point it got cold and started raining so we put on our rain jackets. We went slow and steady the rest of the way. The last mile, for me, was the easiest out of the last three. But I knew we were almost there. I very much paced myself steadied my breathing and we made it up by 2pm

There were plenty of people on the trail. Not crowded but you definitely see people. I agree that it is good to start early as you never know what the weather will be like.

We met a very nice girl on the trail who met her fiancé up top and they gave us a ride down. So getting a ride down is doable.

I never felt short of breath and never felt dizzy. But I also took it slow. I am not an extreme cardio person but I do train and I did my best to train for this, albeit at sea level.

I drank about a gallon and a half of water the two days before the hike and I think that helped. I only drank 2 liters while I’m the trail. Although I brought 3.5 with me.

It is cold up top. I would not do this without a rain coat, warm fleece and a clean shirt to change into.

This was an amazing workout! It was beautiful and quite challenging, especially with the altitude change. If I ever get the chance to do this hike again, I’d definitely start much earlier in the morning vs late morning.

The views are breathtaking!! So glad we decided to hike it.

A brutally addictive experience. Would love to do it over and over again to challenge myself and beat my own time. Bring plenty of water!

Great hike very tough and tiring.

My wife and I hiked up and had a shuttle down on 6/12. We are from Texas and are in average shape. There was really no way to prepare for the altitude but we did a lot of hiking and running around our local area to prepare. We also hiked horse thief, the incline and St Mary's days before this hike to get us acclimated the best we could in a 1 week period.
These are the things I think are essential to make this hike possible:
Good hiking shoes
Proper hiking clothes and dressed in light layers. At 4 am it was cold and when you get up in elevation the temperature dropped.
Trekking poles
A head lamp if you are going to start the hike in the dark
3 litter reservoir bag
Two 1 litter bottles
Water filtering system
Food for snacking and a good meal during the stop at Barr camp. In hind sight I would have had a more substantial meal at the 9 mile point.

Hydrate days before and limit consumption of alcohol and coffee.

We began our hike at 4 am, the first 3 miles a gradual incline that is pretty moderate. At around 2.5 miles it increases in grade till about 3.5 miles. The following 2 miles is pretty much a level hike with a few upwards parts but is really a great chance to enjoy the surroundings. At the 5.5 marker it's all upwards and the challenge is just beginning. We reached Barr camp around 8 and had food and filled up our reservoir bags with the four 1 litter bottles and filtered water into our 1 litter bottles to fill up later. Our reservoir bags were nearly empty, so be sure to buy a filter and bring extra water bottles. We left the camp around 845 and continued upwards. It's all up hill and gets more challenging with less markers compared to the first leg of the hike. Lots of switchbacks after mile 7. We made it to the A frame between 10 or 1030 and I felt we were doing great and would finish the hike by noon. Boy was I wrong. We stopped to rest and filled our bags with the extra bottles. As we moved on for what felt like forever, we reached a marker that said we were 2 miles from the summit. I almost lost hope on finishing, but we kept moving one foot in front of the other. By this time the altitude is starting to hit. The trail becomes more rocky and my mind is starting to give up. We reached the 1 mile from summit marker and we are taking breaks more frequently. The last mile might as well been 100, but we kept pushing upwards. Then the 16 golden stairs. Thank God for my trekking poles. I told my wife I'm marrying those next. As we kept pushing upwards we started seeing the summit and all the people and that gave us some motivation to get those last few steps in. Finally we reached our goal and completed the trip up at 2 PM.

hiking
12 days ago

This is really hard but if you set your mind to it you can do it. I am really scared of heights and I was able to do by just not looking down or up and having my friend talk me through it! I highly recommend this hike!

hiking
13 days ago

Really good hike and very hard!

trail running
14 days ago

great place to get the muscles pumped. I loved the run down

hiking
15 days ago

Great hike with amazing views. It’s obviously steep and the time taken varies between 30min up (super fit & locals) to about 1 hr 40 for the slow types. Well worth it and they have fixed the trail up making it very safe. Went down Barr trail to mix it up, recommended for those who don’t like heights!

What a great hike!! We started the incline at 11 am. Notes... Fill water bladder all the way full in pack, take a snack for the top, sun screen yourself good, come down the switchback, wear good shoes!
Amazing views from the top! So worth it!

No joke this was tough!

hiking
16 days ago

It’s a beast but worth it

I came prepared for a new challenge and the Barr Trail delivered and then some.
I hiked the Barr Trail on 6/4/18. Got started later than planned but was on the trail by 7am.
Met some other first-timers from Kansas early in the hike and we continued on as a group.
The temp. was in the upper 80's in Manitou and continued to be a burden until we got to higher elevation near Case camp.
My 3 liter camel pack of water was quite low by the time we reached the half way point at Base Camp.
With a handy water filtration system I packed I was able to refill my camel pack from the mountain stream.
Highly recommend to pack one by one he way.
We continued on taking breaks more frequently in the higher elevations.
The last 3 miles or so of the trail above the treeline was the most difficult and my legs were killing me by this point. Lots of switchbacks over a large boulder field that seemed endless.
A dark and menacing looking raincloud shadowed the mountain on our last two miles to the summit. Suddenly the wind picked up some strong gust and to our surprise it began snowing!
The snow shower was brief and we were happy to see the raincloud move on. I reached the summit right about 5 o'clock and without much difficulty my group managed to find some friendly tourist to give us a ride back down the mountain.
A memorable experience and I will most likely do it again, just next time I want to prepared to make the hike back down

I live in the Springs, and my father came up from 1,200ft (been training heavily for months) and did this hike with me on June 3rd. Started at 4:00am and with several breaks including 45 min at Barr camp, we summited by 11:30. Such an incredible hike with so much beauty, elevation gain, history, wildlife.. etc.
After an hour at the top they closed the mountain road due to severe winds, we started our way down as originally planned and it was super windy. 60+mph winds. Made for a great experience. Got back to the car in just under 6 hours for a grand total of 14 hours up and down the mountain. Granted, we both are in very good shape and were prepared for this trip, but altitude definitely effects everybody. The last 3 miles for sure is the toughest. Just slow down some, deep long breaths, and plenty of water!!! (Which you should have started 24 hours prior to the trip, ideally) this was both of our first times hiking Pikes Peak. I definitely will be back again soon! Wonderful challenge!

hiking
18 days ago

The Incline is as difficult as stated, 2700+ stairs straight up the mountain. The average person, in fair shape, should plan at least an hour to get to the top. The Barr Trail is a nice way down, though it gets long at the end. Round-trip takes about 3 hours, walking the Barr Trail. Many people run back down the Barr Trail, so be prepared to step aside frequently if walking.

hiking
20 days ago

My husband and I hiked the trail on June 2nd. The weather was perfect all the way up. This was the first time for both of us. We have lived in CO Springs for a few months now, and prior to this, we had done the Incline 3 times. We are in pretty good shape. We started at 5 am, took a 15 min break at mile 3, and made it to Barr Camp in about 2 hours where we took a 30 min break. The first 6.5 miles were not bad. Once we passed the tree line, which is pretty much the last 3 miles before the summit, we started to feel the altitude. At that point, we just slowed down our pace and took frequent, shorter breaks. In the last 3 miles, you are just zigzagging through the mountain. The last mile is definitely the longest, mostly because you just want to get there. It took us 7 hours total including breaks to make it to the top. The views are unforgettable, and we got some really great pictures.
Overall, it was an amazing, challenging experience, and very rewarding once you make it to the summit, look down, and realize that you just hiked that mountain. We spent some time at the summit house, tried their famous donuts, which were not that good, unfortunately. We found two awesome strangers who drove us back to our car.

My wife and I hiked this on Friday, June 1st 2018. It was a nice hike with beautiful views. My stomach was messing with me the night before and the morning of so I failed eat very much. The last mile I hit the WALL. Lack of food got to me and we did the last mile in 10th of a mile increments then I’d rest 5 minutes. After a donut and a Gatorade I was good to go and ready to hitchhike down. A lady over heard me ask a guy for a ride and she said “I’ll make you a deal...I’ll give you a ride down... if you drive.” Turned out she was terrified of heights and didn’t know what she was getting into on the way up. Any way... I drove us right back to our car. That last mile was scary but I learned a lesson. EAT!!!

Take care folks.

James

Solo hiked it May 30, 2018. Hard but very rewarding. It was very dumb of me, but May 30th was my last day visiting Col. Springs, and I was still recovering from food poisoning -- had barely eaten in previous 2 days. Found out about the hike at 8am. Packed, and made it to the Barr Trail head at 11am. Wasn't sure exactly what my options were for getting down, assuming I made it to the peak -- I received conflicting info. It seems at this time of year, 7pm is when the last batch of rangers depart, and the road is closed, so you better make it up there by then.

Anyway, made it to Barr Camp (6.5 miles) in 2 hours 40 mins. Exhausted. Rested for 1 hr 20 min. Hiked the rest (6 miles) in 3 hours 20 min. It was scary at times: it snowed for about 30 minutes, temps were around 45F. And I seriously doubted I could make it to the peak in time. I was worried and imagining having to call for transport down at 7:30pm or so.

The last 3 miles are the toughest. Some sections aren't greatly marked, but it's still pretty easy to always tell where the trail is. The 1st 2 miles are the next-most difficult (84F temps and steep).

I was fairly delirious most of the hike, but luckily made it to the peak at 6:30pm with 30 minutes to spare. I didn't mess around, and I immediately asked the 1st visitor I saw if I could hitch a ride down. It was a 40 minute drive down the paved road.

hiking
25 days ago

Awesome if your up for a huge challenge! My husband is a personal trainer and he found this very difficult. He did however decide to run it. Very steep he says. I stayed back with the dogs. This trail is very narrow and congested. With lots of people!! Dogs are not recommended for trail, but people do take dogs. I however don’t think it’s a very good trail for dogs. We have an older dog and I thought that would be too much for him.

hiking
27 days ago

Extremely difficult for my first time. I had been acclimated to the elevation for 5 weeks and it was still hard. I consider myself to be pretty active, I run everyday but was still challenged by the Manitou Incline. I am so glad I did it once because the view was definitely worth it! Just do not push yourself if you cannot physically complete this hike there is a bailout trail prior to the top.

hiking
27 days ago

❤️

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