Cheap, free, and local-endorsed things to do in beautiful places

Roxborough State Park Trails

  • ★★★★★
  • 5.4 mile loops
  • Elevation gain: 520 feet
  • 2-3 hours
  • Moderately strenuous
  • Amazing red rock formations and great fall colors in October
  • Customizable trails – you can adjust for a shorter or longer hike

Distance from Denver: 45 minutes

Directions: Click here

Parking: $7

Roxborough is known as Denver’s version of Colorado Springs’ Garden of the Gods and it’s a much quieter and less touristy place to visit. It’s amazing to get to enjoy such dramatic natural scenery just outside the Denver metro area. Come in October to see the trees and brush turn into wonderful yellows, oranges, and reds between the huge red rock formations.

Begin the hikes at the Visitor Center about a mile from the entrance station. I suggest doing the Fountain Valley loop followed by the South Rim loop. First, follow signs to the Fountain Valley Overlook, where you’ll get a great view of the park’s rock formations (you’ll take a left when you encounter a fork in the trail). After the overlook, take the Fountain Valley trail for about 1.5 miles and then do a quick 0.2 side trail to the Lyons Overlook, which provides an amazing panoramic view.

Reconnect to the Fountain Valley Trail and then follow signs to the South Rim Trail. You’ll reach the most strenous part of the hike and do switchbacks until you’re atop a tall hill and have an amazing panoramic view of the entire park and the Denver metro area. After 3 miles on this trail, you’ll be back downhill and will have to follow a short path back to the Visitor Center.

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