Best moderate hikes near boulder
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The hiking in Boulder Colorado and nearby is incredible. There are so many hiking trails accessible within minutes of downtown Boulder. In this guide, you will learn how to navigate all the best hikes in Boulder. Flagstaff Mountain and Mount Sanitas are also very popular for hikes that are slightly less demanding. And, of course, you must check out the famous Boulder Flatirons at Chautauqua Park. You can access these hiking hotspots from a number of angles and trailheads.
All the hikes are amazing. I have done all the hikes and trails many times over and I am still in awe. To avoid becoming lost download one or all! Then you can follow your progress as you go on these top hikes in Boulder. Having hiked the area a lot, I think it makes the most sense to discuss where you can hike to, and the trails that will take you there. There are many different routes that you can take. First, I will talk about the most common and fastest routes to Bear Peak Summit.
Later on, I will show you some hiking routes that will take you to Bear Peak and some of the other great local mountains. Bear Peak was the first hike I did in Boulder. It is the second tallest local mountain but most prominent of the Boulder skyline. I think it is the most satisfying and also the best hike to do in Boulder. The views are incredible in all directions.
Especially West to the snowy continental divide. There are several different hiking routes and trails that you can follow to get to Bear Peak Summit. Once you get to the summit you can take the same route back or choose a different trail from the list above to do a loop back to your starting point.
Be prepared, this hiking trail is very steep in some sections. Fern Canyon is considered one of the most difficult hikes in Boulder. Your fitness level should be above average. From either of the above trailheads, it takes approximately minutes to get to the start of Fern Canyon Trail.
At this point, you are about a third of the way to the top of Bear Peak. From the start of Fern Canyon Trail you will start to gain elevation rapidly. The hike is steep and slower going from here on to the summit. The trail is rocky. Be sure to wear proper hiking footwear to protect your feet and for good traction.
The trail winds and switchbacks Westward for about minutes up to a saddle near the Nebel Horn. You will have your first views West to the continental divide, and of Green Mountain to the North. At this juncture, you have completed about two-thirds of the way to the summit.
One more steep push to the top. This section also takes about minutes. The trail becomes rockier as you go. Near the summit the trail becomes entirely rock. Carefully scramble to the summit, observe the summit markers, and take in the wonderful views.
Here, you can ponder life and the route you will take back. If you want to take a less intense aka steep but longer distance and time route to Bear Peak Summit try Bear Canyon Trail. To the right, Green-Bear switchbacks and winds up towards Green Mountain. Perhaps a little longer if you take breaks, enjoy the scenery and take photos. Make sure you have sun protection sun sunscreen, a sun hat, and sunglasses for this section of the hike. There is no shade for a good stretch. This route to the summit seems popular with trail runners due to the steady gradual uphill climb compared to the abrupt steep Fern Canyon Trail.
You can do it either direction. Take your pick. Here is the route starting from NCAR. Now it is time to shift the focus to the tallest local mountain, South Boulder Peak.
So, I will show you a couple of loops that include both of these summits. However, it is a tough hike. Like Fern Canyon, Shadow Canyon has a long steep section. It is like a rocky staircase to the top. The first half of Shadow Canyon is a nice shady trail that winds through forest and around giant boulders. Gradually, the hike gets steeper and more challenging. Towards the top of Shadow Canyon, you will find yourself more exposed and in direct sunlight due to the burnt out area caused by the forest fire in The trail switchbacks through the burnt forest to a saddle where you get your first views of the Continental divide and the Rocky Mountains to the West.
I think that the hiking trails of Green Mountain are the most beautiful in Boulder. So many great views in all directions. The classic Green Mountain loop hike is one of the more shaded hikes in Boulder which is very welcome in the hotter months.
Green Mountain is great for beginners and for more advanced hikers. Other days, I will do a big loop around Green Mountain. Either way, start at the Gregory Canyon Trailhead. The first route is the fastest, most direct route to Green Mountain Summit from Boulder. The second two routes that take you up Gregory Canyon Trail are longer routes to the summit. One option is to do a loop and explore most of the Green Mountain trails all at once.
Take Saddle Rock and E. Greenman Trails to the Summit. Continue on E. If you are up for a longer hike you could do Green Mountain and Bear Peak on the same day. If you are feeling really ambitious you could also do South Boulder Peak. Whatever you decide, just be conscious of your ability, elevation gains, distance, and how you will get back. Sunrise if possible.
There are some steep sections to the hike, but not nearly as intense as hiking the big three peaks in Boulder. All skill levels can do this hike.
I rate this as a moderate hike to do in Boulder. The trail ends at the Royal Arch an incredible rock formation in the shape of an arch. It is massive and very cool.
Go through the arch and sit on the rocks in and around the end of the trail. Be careful, to the South of the arch is a sheer drop off. If you are traveling here from lower elevations, this is a great introductory hike to get adjusted.
This hike provides a quick glimpse of what hiking in Boulder is all about. It is a great intermediate hike that shows off incredible views of the Flatirons, Boulder below, and the Indian Peaks continental divide to the West.
Mount Sanitas is probably the most popular hike in Boulder. It is a go-to trail for trail runners, and also a popular hike to do in Boulder with dogs. Is it the best hike in Boulder? Maybe not. But it is super accessible to downtown Boulder and a good hike to do if you have less than 2 hours. The West side of the loop rises at a decent grade and is rocky.
The East side of the loop Sanitas Valley Trail is essentially a road down a valley. Drive up Sunshine Canyon Road and park at the trailhead. This is an easy hiking trail that switchbacks through beautiful coniferous forest. This hike is totally epic. It offers incredible views of the Flatirons and Bear Peak as you travel from one end of the trail to the other.
If you are visiting Boulder, and are coming from lower elevations, this trail is a great all-day hiking adventure that you can do while you acclimate. However, it is a demanding hike that covers This is a hike for hikers that are already in great shape.
You can start this hike at Chautauqua Trailhead and travel South, returning North. Access the park at the West end of Pearl Street and do a quick loop.
Best moderate hikes near boulder –
· To reach one of the top hikes near Boulder, Colorado, start at the Chautauqua Park Trailhead. Then, choose the Bluebell Road to the Bluebell shelter. (South Segment Hike) . · Boulder Skyline Traverse. Location: Eldorado Springs, miles south of downtown Boulder. Length: mile traverse. Difficulty Rating: Difficult. Best For: A long day for . 1 day ago · Best Hikes In Boulder Colorado – Bonus Hikes. So that is our top 10 best hikes near Boulder. But of course there are so many more hikes that you can do in the area. For your .