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    Top 10 Hiking Spots in Colorado

    Quick. What’s the first thing that comes to mind when you think of Colorado? If you thought “outdoor adventures,” then you’ve come to the right place. Colorado boasts some of the most beautiful hikes and scenery that the US has to offer, from the San Juan Mountains to Rocky Mountain National Park. From alpine lakes and wildflower meadows, to red-rock formations and panoramic vistas, Colorado’s really got it all. Lucky for you, we’ve got the top 10 hiking spots in Colorado right here. Strap on your hiking shoes, it’s time to explore.

    1. Mount Elbert Peak

    Skill level: Intermediate

    Coming in at 14,433 feet, we’re starting off this list with the tallest mountain in Colorado and the 2nd tallest in the lower 48 states. This 9-mile hike will all be worth it once you take in the spectacular views at the top. Best of all, you don’t have to be an expert climber to reach this height.

    2. Butler Gulch

    Skill level: Beginner

    Looking for a more relaxed, scenic hike? Butler Gulch is the perfect hike for beginners who want a nice summertime stroll. You’ll get amazing views of the alpine lakes as well as an up-close view of beautiful wildflowers. This hike is especially known for its 100+ species of wildflowers, making it a “century” hike. Look out for the Colorado state flower, the Rocky Mountain Columbine.

    3. Crater Lake

    Skill level: Beginner

    Another great trail for beginners, Crater Lake may be simple, but still boasts some of the most spectacular views in Colorado. This is an easy 3.9-mile hike near Aspen and is best explored June-October. Come during sunrise and watch as the sun rises over the mountains and shines on the lake.

    4. Ouzel Falls

    Skill level: Intermediate

    Hike Ouzel Falls just for the purpose of finding the rare and delicate calypso orchid. This wildflower isn’t too easy to find as it often hides beneath trees and tucked into shady spots.

    Now is the best time to see the orchid, between late June and early July. Come for the orchid, but stay for the waterfall. At the end of the trail is a magnificent 40-foot waterfall.

    5. Royal Arch Trail

    Skill level: Difficult

    At the end of this 3.4-mile trail is The Royal Arch, a 20-foot span of sandstone that boasts a birds-eye-view of Boulder. This trail is located in Boulder’s Chautauqua Park and is often crowded in the summer, but the views alone are worth it. Skip the crowds and hike on a weekday or early morning.

    6. Mount Sniktau

    Skill level: Beginner

    Don’t be distracted by its funny name, Mount Sniktau is another great scenic trail for beginners. This hike is located near Loveland Pass and offers amazing panoramic views. If you’re looking for an easy day trip, this trail is perfect for those coming from Denver.

    7. Caribou Lake

    Skill level: Intermediate

    If you love to fish, this is the perfect hike for you! This trail is 8.2 miles and offers panoramic vistas and great fishing. At the end of the hike, you can try catching a few fish at Caribou Lake and watch the sunset. Bring your backpack, your fishing gear, and your trail mix because this is a longer hike, but well worth the distance.

    8. St. Mary’s Glacier Loop

    Skill level: Beginner

    This trail, located in the Arapaho National Forest, is a 1.6-mile hike, perfect for the whole family to enjoy. Along the way to the glacier-fed lake, you’ll find plenty of wildlife and wildflowers. This short and easy hike is a favorite for those who want a nice relaxing day outdoors.

    9. Lost Man Loop

    Skill level: Intermediate

    Don’t let the name intimidate you, Lost Man Loop is not only for advanced hikers. At 8.8 miles, this trail is a longer hike, but low in elevation gain. Don’t miss the views of the alpine lakes, majestic peaks, and wildlife.

    10. La Plata Peak

    Skill level: Intermediate

    Rounding off this list is La Plata Peak, one of the most beautiful peaks that the Rockies can offer. The view at the top of the peak is incredible, so don’t forget to bring your camera. The best part is, after a long day of hiking, you can cool off in the idyllic Twin Lakes at the bottom of the trail.

    Need a break after all that hiking? Take a pit stop at Isle Casino Hotel® Black Hawk for some fun gaming and dining activities. Trust us, you deserved it.

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