The 7 Best Hikes Near Golden For Every Ability
The days are finally starting to warm up, and before you know it, the summer hiking season will be in full swing! While Colorado is teeming with gorgeous alpine lakes and crazy peaks, finding something a little closer to home can be challenging. Spending hours in the car isn’t the best way to start your day in the great outdoors, especially if you don’t have all day. Skip the long drive and heavy traffic and check out the 7best hikes near Golden this summer. Hiking in Golden offers trails to fit any timeframe and fitness level. Most of the hikes near Golden are family and dog-friendly and (best of all), you’ll end up close by the historic downtown of Golden withseveral breweries just around the corner. That’s hard to beat, isn’t it?
7 Best Hikes Near Golden, Colorado
South Table Mountain
Located in the southern part of Golden, you can access the summit of South Table Mountain by way of several different trailheads. This allows for a variety of difficulty levels, lengths, and scenery. The most direct way to get to the top of South Table is via the Golden Summit Trail. Just 2 miles round trip, this classic hike near Golden offers a steep incline that’s sure to take your breath away (literally). You’ll find the trailhead just minutes from Downtown. But once you’re at the top, you’ll enjoy 360 views of Denver behind you, the foothills of Lookout Mountain in front of you, and even views of the Flatirons in the distance. South Table Mountain is one of thebest hikes near Golden and an iconic feature of the Golden landscape.
Red Rocks And Dakota Ridge Loop
Just a 15-minute drive from Golden is the little town of Morrison, Colorado. It’s famous for its proximity to the iconic Red Rocks Amphitheater, one of the most unique music venues in the United States. And, it’s also home to some of the best hikes near Golden. The 10.5 mile Red Rocks and Dakota Ridge Loop captures everything that makes this one of the best hiking areas near Golden. With eye-catching sandstone formations mixed with budding greenery, this area will make you forget you’re practically still at home. Enjoy miles of solitude in the rolling hills, and eventually, you’ll find yourself at steps to Red Rocks Amphitheater itself!
Eldorado Canyon Trail
While this hike is a slightly longer drive, it’s well worth it for a full day of some of thebest hiking near Golden. Just 20 minutes down scenic Highway 93 you’ll find the smattering of houses know as Eldorado Springs. Tucked inside is the entrance to Eldorado Canyon State Park, a hidden gem of the Golden/Boulder hiking scene. The small entrance fee is well worth the views inside. If you’re up for a bit of challenge, follow the Eldorado Canyon Trail up for some epic views of the Rocky Mountains, as well as a birds-eye view of Eldorado Canyon itself. A morefamily-friendly hike near Golden would be to take the Fowler trail, a mellow 2-mile trail that wanders through lightly forested areas and gives views of the rocks that make Eldorado Canyon a world-class climbing destination.
4.) Mount Morrison
Are you up for a challenge? Mount Morrison is a steep hike that takes some sure footing to get to the top. It’s just shy of 4 miles round trip and is one of the best hikes near Golden for when you want to get your heart pumping right away. Along the trail, you’ll see those amazing red rocks that the Morrison area is known for. And as you gain elevation, enjoy views deep into the foothills of the rockies. Seeing Denver as a little toy city below you is sure to put things into perspective.
5. Lookout Mountain Trail
When you’re in Golden, you’ll find North and South Table Mountain separating Golden from the urban sprawl of Denver. Lookout Mountain completes the trio as the crowning summit of the Golden foothills. Of course, you could just drive to the top of Lookout Mountain, but it won’t give you quite the same feeling of accomplishment as getting to the top of one of the best hikes near Golden on your own two feet. So try out the Lookout Mountain Trail instead. For a longer, all-day hike, start from the lowest parking area at the base of Lookout Mountain and follow the Chimney Gulch trail for about two and a half miles. From there you’ll run into the Lookout Mountain Trail. After two and a half more miles, you’ll be standing at the summit of Lookout Mountain! Enjoy views of the entire city of Golden (you might even be able to pick out where you want to head to refuel after the hike), and then head back the way you came.
6. Green Mountain Loop
The Green Mountain Loop is one of thebest hikes near Golden for those wanting to stay closer to the city. A short drive from 6th Avenue which connects Denver and Golden, Green Mountain offers a breath of fresh air just a few minutes outside of the city. And you can clock a surprising number of miles on the Green Mountain trail system as well. Follow the Green Mountain Loop trail all the way around Green Mountain for a full 7.7 miles. If you want more, you can follow the summit trail to the top of Green Mountain or connect to one of the many other trails that shoot off of the Green Mountain loop. If you’re a biker, you’ll want to head back to Green mountain again to enjoy some great singletrack!
7. Mount Falcon
Like South Table Mountain, Mt. Falcon has two main trailheads, which offer some of the best hikes near Golden for every ability level and time frame. From the East Mt. Falcon trailhead, enjoy loops that are up to 10 miles in distance. From the West side of Mount Falcon, try out shorter trails that still offer panoramic mountain views and fresh air. From either side, you’ll be able to hike to two unique structures that are part of Golden history. The first is the Walker House, which was a giant house build by John Walker in 1903, only to catch on fire due to a lightning strike and burn down. Further down the trail, you’ll come across the summer white house ruins. The Walker family once had a dream of creating a summertime getaway for visit Presidents, but all that came to be were the foundation blocks that you can still see today. Mount Falcon offers a unique mix of scenery and history, making it one of thebest hikes near Golden for kids as well as adults.