We spend a great deal of time outdoors and have a real appreciation of what Colorado has to offer. This region has very unique places of interest for hiking, running, cycling, walking your pets, or just a casual stroll. We are going to share some of our best choices for many options - families, adventure seekers, young, and young at heart. Many of our trips involved minimal costs and usually only take an hour or less to get to. Remember, many of the state parks require a small entry fee, so bring along small cash to check in and support the parks. Take a look here to see what fits your liking, and enjoy!
Bear Creek Park Trail and Dog Park
We love this place and take our dogs there frequently. This Favorite-Local-Trails park has a mountain creek running along the south end and hiking terrain. This also has a separate small dog area, a creek, shade, drinking water, dog rinse area, and benches. One Note of Caution: it is noted that the fencing here is not 100% dog proof, so you jut have to keep a watchful eye on your pup! . This dog park is supported by LOOP (Lovers of Off-leash Parks).
It is also adjacent to the Visitor Center and some pretty challenging running trails, all of which we have enjoyed over time. The PawtoberFest fund raiser is held there each year and that was lots of fun and supported a great cause for the local Humane Society. during some times of the year you should keep your pets close by and watch our for wildlife as winter sets in as well.
Memorial Park is great for a stroll with your friends or alone! We go there frequently to run and get a good workout in. The local folk there are very friendly and there s always someone water skiing or fishing along the banks.
The sidewalk around the Prospect Lake is just over a mile (1.25m we think), that way you know how far you have gone and how much further you have to go! You can fish in the lake, go swimming, take your boat out, do some mini water skiing or just watch the wild life! This park is huge so you don't have to be near anyone if you don't want to be. They do use this park for a few different festivals throughout the year. For Labor Day weekend they do the Balloon Classic and Balloon Glow. During the summer they have Spring Spree and if you can get the schedule check out the bikers on the velodrome. There is also a very nice and large skate park for the kids and they just added two different sized half pipes!
Easy to access from Union and I-25, close to Colorado Springs downtown and Manitou as well.
Pikes Peak Green Way
As one of our Favorite-Local-Trails, for over 30 miles of trail each way, you can start your journey in the town of Palmer Lake, Colorado and ride the Santa Fe New Regional Trail (guide available). That trail will take you through a couple small towns then through the beautifully forested grounds of the Air Force Academy. Just north of Colorado Springs, the New Santa Fe Trail will conjoin with the Pikes Peak Greenway trail for a great long distance trail. If however, you are satisfied to "just" ride 32 miles worth of awesome trail, then you will not be disappointed in the Pikes Peak Greenway. A good place to start the trail is at the Woodmen Road Park-N-Ride just west of Highway 25 on the north end of Colorado Springs. Although it's a good idea to pack plenty of emergency provisions, you won't have to worry too much about forgetting something because the first portion of the trail has restaurants, hotels, and a well-stocked bicycle store.
Another unique and positive aspect of this trail is all of the side paths that branch off of it. Even if you've ridden/walked this trail before, you won't lack for side excursions to keep the experience fresh and exciting. You can explore the old pioneer town of Colorado City, wildflower gardens in the park, a beautiful college campus, and even a streetcar rail museum. We've hit it by foot and by bike, great fun and relaxing times any way you choose. Lots of friendly people along the way and wildlife is a certainty!
Monument Valley Park
Garden of the Gods Park
11 Mile State Park
Manitou Lake Park