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Red Rock Canyon Trails

Wandering among the Seedlings of the Garden of the Gods
id_3070123
Rating: 5 out of 5 by EveryTrail members
Difficulty: Moderate
Length: 5 miles
Duration: 1-3 hours
Family Friendly

Overview:  The Garden of the Gods is world famous, but two miles south of the Garden “Red Rock Canyon Open Space” invites hikers to enjoy the... more »

Tips:  Directions: From I-25 take the Cimarron Street exit west. Cimarron Street will turn into Highway 24. After the 31st Street light, turn... more »

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Points of Interest

1. Trailhead

Because this is a very popular venue in Colorado Springs, the trailhead parking is extensive. Watch for signs indicating one way directions, and watch for children running around their parents’ cars. The trails in this park are very well maintained and very well marked. So I’m going to use trail names as they occur on the signs in the park to... More

2. Contemplative Trail

Stay to the right at the trail split. Follow the signs for “Contemplative Trail.” Because this trail runs on the west side of the Fountain Formation sandstone, it is in the shade most of the time. Several patrons have sponsored log benches so you can sit and contemplate the beauty of the rocks and trees.

3. Roundup Trail

About a half mile along the trail, you’ll reach a junction where the trail you’re on becomes the “Roundup Trail.” The “Sand Canyon Trail” which cuts off to the right leads to a dead end; lovely view, but no way out but back. You’ll begin to climb more on this section. Follow the trail for another half mile south until it meets the “Mesa Trail.”... More

4. Mesa Trail

When you reach the “Mesa Trail” junction, turn left and walk down the hill for about .9 miles. This is an easy walk on a broad flat trail. You’ll know your at the next turn around point when you see the sign for the “Upper Dog Loop” on your left. The rock on your left is still the Fountain Formation, while the rock on your right is part of the... More

5. Greenlee Trail

When you reach the Upper Dog Loop sign, turn around and head back up the hill, veering off to the left onto the “Greenlee Trail.” Follow this trail up the hill for almost a mile. You’ll have the primary quarry rock of the Lyons Sandstone on your left now. About half way up the hill you’ll see the quarry off to your left – there is a trail through ... More

6. Roundup Trail Redux

Turn left at the Roundup Trail sign. The trail becomes very narrow at this point and leads into some lovely switchbacks as it descend into the valley of the actual Red Rock Canyon. Behind, to the south of, this section of trail lies “Section 16,” an area of wilderness which has its own trail system and will be the subject of another trail guide.... More

7. Red Rock Canyon Trail

The final turn toward the trailhead. Roundup Trail bends to the north and becomes the Red Rock Canyon Trail. This last segment will lead you between the Lyon Sandstone hogback and the western side of the Dakota Sandstone ridge. In the late 1800s blocks as large as 6X7X10 ft., weighing 10 tons, were cut and shipped from this quarry. At the bottom... More