Roxborough State Park
This close by state park marked our first trip out hiking in our new city. For Denverites, this park offers up one of the closest spots from the city for decent hiking. You can take on anything from a half mile overlook to a 6.4 mile round-trip trek to Carpenter Peak. For our maiden Denver outing, we took on something pretty easy and did the 2.3 mile Fountain Valley Trail. This trail offered up views of unique red rock formations and rather interestingly, the home and constructions of developer, Henry S. Persse. Henry envisioned the now Roxburgh as a prime spot for a resort or Front Range getaway. Although this vision never came to life, it now makes for a unique site to visit.
If you don’t have too much time or don’t want to travel very far, but still want some quality time spent exploring the outdoors, Roxborough is a great option to check out.
Eldorado Canyon State Park
I have learned a lot of things about myself since we started hiking. One of the biggest findings: running water is my favorite noise! I am happiest, most calm, and most captivated when next to or observing a waterfall or fast-moving creek. The hubs is great at taking the time to find places with the coolest water features to check out. And Eldorado was my first of now many places that I feel in love with because of it’s awesome stream!
On our first trip to Eldorado, we hiked the Rattlesnake Gulch Trail. It’s an easy-moderate hike of 3.6 miles round-trip, with elevation gains and decents evenly throughout. It offers an amazing view at the top of the Continental Divide, as well as the plains, and does a good job of making you remember you are a small part of a very big and vivid world! You won’t be disappointed. This trail also takes you by the remains of the old Crags hotel, that burned down. There is not too much of it to see, but it still somewhat interesting.
And just last week, we hiked the Streamside Trail. While it is pretty easy, know that it is also mostly rocky and be ready to climb up and down often. It’s only a mile there and back and gives you plenty of opportunities to stop and and take in the stream.
In addition to these two trails, ECSP has three more for you to check out with varying milage depending on your time or level of interest. This park is also well knowing for it’s climbing opportunities. The Witzs’ knowledge of climbing is very limited, but if this is your hobby, it’s definitely somewhere to possibly check out.
Golden Gate State Park
A vast and spectacular place to visit. We have only explored one trail amid this large park, but it was a great one! Golden Gate offers over ten trails to check out, plus it is one of Colorado’s state parks that you can actually camp at. Since CO offers up so much National Park and National Forest property, a lot of the state parks do not allow camping, Golden Gate is an exception. We hope to go back and camp soon!
For our day at the park, we walked Snowshoe Hare Trail, a three mile loop to Dude’s Fishing Hole (pictured above). It was very fitting to be on this trail when we were there, as it was March, chilly, and a good amount of snow was still on the ground. Although I know we will want to check out other trails when we go back, Dude’s Fishing hole is somewhere I do hope to go back to. I want to hang the hammock, read a book, and just enjoy the day/view again! It made for an awesome reward to get at the end of the trek.
We also found a fantastic view at the top of large rock on the way back, that made the trip even sweeter (pictured below)! This trail was pretty easy, it’s mostly through the woods, pretty shady, and also pretty secluded (at least when we were there).