The Best Family Hiking Trips in Colorado

The weather is beautiful, the trails are open… It’s time for a family hiking trip! Taking your family hiking in Colorado is easy. After all, we’re surrounded by gorgeous scenery, fabulous mountains, and some of the best hiking trails in the country. The hardest part of hiking in Colorado might be deciding which scenic trail to hit first!

Gorgeous Viewpoints Abound in Colorado

Stoke up with a hearty breakfast and then head out for a day of exploring Colorado’s scenic beauty. You may want to start with a day hike up Pike’s Peak,  the views from which inspired the beloved song ‘America the Beautiful’.  From breathtaking views to quiet mountain meadows, from strenuous climbs up a challenging fourteener to family-friendly backpacking trails, Colorado has something for everyone!

Colorado offers an abundance of hiking opportunities for the whole family to enjoy. There are several beautiful State Parks to explore, as well as National Parks like spectacularly scenic Rocky Mountain National Park, awe-inspiring Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park, and the incomparable Uncompahgre Wilderness.

Family-Friendly Hiking

family hiking vacationsGetting outside with your family to enjoy some fresh air, sunshine, and exercise is good for everyone’s mental and physical health. You might want to start with a non-intensive hike to get everyone warmed up before planning a more extensive family hiking vacation.

Some of our favorite family hikes near Denver are easy enough for families with young children but interesting enough for the whole family to enjoy. They include the Bear Creek Trail at Lair o’ the Bear Park, the Evergreen Lake Trail, and the trails at the Lookout Mountain Nature Center.

Travel a little farther afield and you can enjoy some more great hikes at Emerald Lake in beautiful Rocky Mountain National Park, the renowned hiking trails at Garden of the Gods in Colorado Springs, and Sedalia’s Devil’s Head Lookout Trail, which ends at the historic Devil’s Head Lookout.

Family Backpacking Trips

Did your family whet its appetite on the easy trails we listed above? If so, it might be time to tackle something a bit more adventurous! There are several 2 to 4-day backpacking trips that are great for families looking for something a little more exciting than a simple day hike.

Chicago Lakes – Echo Lake Trail

Located near Idaho Springs, this trail is just under 10 miles long and only gains a couple of thousand feet in elevation. That makes it perfect for beginning backpackers or families with pre-teens. Make a 2 or 3-day adventure out of it so you have a better chance of seeing the elk, moose, bighorn sheep, and mountain goats that inhabit the area.

Abyss Lake — Guanella Pass Trail

This trail near Georgetown offers sweeping views and spectacular vistas. The roundtrip is just over 17 miles with around 3,000′ in elevation change. The scenery, wildlife, waterways, and diverse terrain make it well worth a 3-day backpacking trip!

The Four Pass Loop

This 28-mile loop near Aspen gains 8,000′ in elevation, so it’s definitely more challenging than the day hikes we’ve listed! Plan on spending 3 or 4 days crossing the four mountain passes along this trail.

Are You Fueled for the Trail?

The next time you’re getting the family ready for a full day (or 3!) of hiking, stop by OPH first. Save your spot in line with the Yelp waitlist and we’ll have you well-fed and ready to hit the trail in no time!