One of the many benefits to living in the Golden/Denver Metro area is having access to SO MANY great spots to visit! Below are just of few of the hidden gems in Colorado, all within in two hours driving time.
St. Mary’s Lake: 7599 Fall River Road, Idaho Springs. A must see! St. Mary’s lake, located just below the glacier, is ringed by pines, thick willow and abundant wildflowers. The glacier – technically a large perennial snowfield – is a popular year-round destination open to hiking, skiing, glissading, climbing and sledding. Dog friendly (on leash). Click here for directions and details.
Confluence Park: 2250 15th St., Denver. This is where Cherry Creek and South Platte River meet. The unique and scenic area is where a couple of miners found gold back in 1858. Enjoy panoramic views of downtown Denver. In the summer, Confluence Park is home to a free concert series, held every Thursday evening around dusk. Click here to learn more.
Manitou Springs Incline: At Ruxton St. across from the Cog Railway in Manitou Springs. A vertical mile staircase in Manitou Springs known simply as “The Incline” is truly a flight of stairs worth taking. A thigh burner to say the least but the spectacular view at the top is your payback. No pets. Click here for more information.
Golden Gate Canyon State Park: 92 Crawford Gulch Road, Golden. Hike the winding trails among the aspens and pine trees plus a variety of wildflowers in the summer months. Designated areas with BBQ’s make this a great place to get away for a picnic while enjoying all of Colorado’s beauty. There are several marked trails for hiking plus campsites as well. One of my favorites! Click here to learn more about this fabulous spot.
Four Mile Historical Park: 715 S Forest St., Denver. A 12-acre historic oasis and the site of Denver’s oldest house. Tour the museum, stroll the gardens and grounds, see antique farm equipment and visit the animals. Weekend horse-drawn rides and family activities (weather permitting). See website for admission fees.
Blue Lake, Rawah Wilderness Area: Between Roosevelt and Routt National Forest near Fort Collins. Glaciers carved the granite peaks of Rawah leaving behind 26 pristine lakes ranging from five to 39 acres. The popular Blue Lake Trailhead sits at 9,495 feet, just past Chambers Lake at the mouth of the Poudre Canyon. More than 90 varieties of wildflowers, trout fishing and campsites around these lakes. This destination may be further than a two hour drive depending on where you go. Get more info here.
Forsyth Canyon: Features the stunning Forsyth waterfall that is relatively unknown among even the most versed locals. Dogs (on leash) and kids will enjoy this 2.2 mile hike to the falls, situated along side the Gross Reservoir, just outside Boulder. Go here to learn more.