With Colorado being so well known for is geographical diversity, the opportunities for satisfying hikes with stunning views are endless! And for many of us, sharing the wonder of the great outdoors with our four-legged friends is one of our favorite past times. These tail-wagging travelers were born to romp, run and road trip across our beautiful state. Following are a list of some of the best dog-friendly hikes across Colorado for you and your pup to share together!
Meadowlark Trail Loop
Trail-head:Deer Creek Canyon Park
Difficulty:Easy to Moderate
The Meadowlark Trail is only for hikers, so it will take you and your pet away from the heavy weekend bicycle traffic. This is the perfect trail for the beginner hiker and an older dog. On this hike you will enjoy a beautiful sandy meadow, yucca plants, small cacti, and wonderful views of red rock formations. After completing the trail, enjoy a nice lunch with your pooch at the picnic shelters near the trail head.
Beaver Brook Trail
Trail-head:West – Stapleton Drive; East – Windy Saddle Open Space Park
While Beaver Brook Trail might be a little hard to find, it will take you on a fairly easy, yet secluded hike that both you and fido will enjoy. The hike down is fairly easy, providing tons of shade and fun places for your dog to explore. But the hike back proves to be a bit more difficult. The good news is that the trail stays shaded nearly the entire hike. The path does cross over a river several times so be sure to wear the right shoes!
Trail-head:Highway 128 & Highway 93
Difficulty: Easy to Moderate
If you are planning a trip to Boulder, be sure to take your pup on this three hour hike. Flatirons Vista is studded with stunning panoramic views and one of the most beautiful sunsets in the state. There isn’t a lot of shade on this trail, so you’ll want to bring plenty of water for you and your pooch. However, there is a nice pond for your dog to play in along the way. By the time you and fido have finished this hike you will both be ready to relax either in town or on the drive home.
Bear Creek Trail at Lair O’ The Bear
Trail-head:Lair O’ The Bear Parking Lot
The Bear Creek Trail has something for every level of hiker. Enjoy some quality time with your pup by taking a relaxing stroll along the 3 mile hike. This route will take you alongside a grassy meadow and through shaded piney areas with views of the canyon and creek. The 12.5 mile hike is a bit more rigorous, but not too difficult. You and your pooch will get to take in 3 different parks and various different environments. One thing is for certain, you and your dog will make new friends, both canine and human alike!
Frazer Meadow Trail
Trail-head:Golden Gate Canyon State Park
Difficulty:Easy – Moderate
You and your pup will enjoy everything that Frazer Meadow Trail has to offer including, abundant aspen groves, summer wild flowers, and wildlife viewing all year long. Your dog will be entertained with all the space to run around and the meadows to play in. While you will get to take in awesome views of nearby and far off mountains, as well as beautiful surrounding forests. And all of this lush scenery is just a few minutes from downtown!
The Crags Trail
This trail is well traveled so it will be easy to follow. The ground is padded with evergreen needles, making it easy for fido to tromp around. But be warned, there is a leash requirement! The trail is named for the beautiful rock formations that line the path which provide for some nice rock climbing! Once you reach the top you will have expansive views of the Pike’s Peak area and the city below.
Trail-head:Echo Lake Park
Difficulty:Easy (But Consider Altitude)
Despite being a relatively short hike, this is a great place to take visiting friends and family, and your dog! While hiking around the lake, you and spot can take in the beautiful sights, sounds, smells, and strange creatures. You can also venture off on one of the other trails that connect to Echo lake including, Chicago Lakes or Bear Tracks Lake trails which will give you access to the Mount Evans Wilderness Area and Mount Evans summit.
Meyer’s Ranch Park Trail
Trail-head:Meyer Ranch Park
Difficulty:Easy – Difficult
The wonderful thing about Meyer Ranch Park is that it’s great for all skill levels, from a small Yorkshire Terrier to a Golden Retriever! Start out in a wide open meadow and you will eventually find yourself surrounded by picturesque forest. Then you get to choose whether you and your pup want to stick to the meadow loop or trek over the mountain. Regardless of the route you take, this will be a nice afternoon escape for both you and your dog.
Enchanted Forest Forest Trail
Trail-head: Heritage Square Parking Lot
The Enchanted Forest Trail is one that your pup will love! It follows a tumbling creek for most of the way and has a shady side trail your dog can roam on. But be sure to pick a good pace because with a few steep inclines, this hike is sure to test your stamina. While you cruise through the thick and tranquil Enchanted Forest, watch for blooming wildflowers and herds of elk among the trees.