Hiking and biking is a way of life in Denver, and why wouldn’t it be? With over 300 days of sunshine per year, it’s the perfect place to get active in the great outdoors. In fact, it wasn’t too long ago that Colorado was reported to be the most physically active state in the country. At Chuze South Monaco, we’re serious about our fitness; indoors, outdoors, we like it all!
According to Denver Parks and Recreation, the city offers more than 80 miles of multi-use trails for you to plan your next hiking or biking activity. It’s always a good idea to shake up your workout routine to avoid getting stuck in a rut. Find the trail that fits your fitness level and gives you a perspective of the city you may not have experienced before.
Bear Creek Bike Trail
A 20-mile trail is all it takes to bike to the entryway of Red Rocks Park. It’s a beautiful trail that connects to Chatfield State Park or Golden depending on which direction you go. The entire loop equals about 40-60 miles from downtown. It’s quite the bike trek for cycling enthusiasts. Not quite sure if you’re up for the ride yet? Strengthen your leg muscles and build your endurance with a customized fitness program or add a cycle or strength class to your fitness routine.
Rocky Mountain National Park’s Mills Lake is a popular choice for hiking in Denver if you want beautiful scenery. By hiking a little over 5 miles round trip, you’ll have the chance to cross a footbridge, witness a 30-foot waterfall, and take a break to picnic before trekking on.
Note that this trail is for hiking only, so you’ll want to leave the bike at home this time around. Head out on a weekend morning or take advantage of the extended hours of sunshine with a post-work hike. Consider it a new way to host a happy hour.
Cherry Creek Trail
Touted as one of the most sought-after spots in Denver, you’ll find plenty of people hiking and biking at Cherry Creek Trail throughout the year. The paved trail begins at Confluence Park, but an off-road trail is available for bikers who want to head away from the beaten path.
There are also stop-off spots at historic and state parks if you want to soak up the scenery or take a break from your hiking/biking excursion. This trail gives locals and visitors alike a way to explore different neighborhoods and create personal itineraries. Pack snacks, plan for stops, and make a day of it on the trail. You might be surprised to find out just how many steps you end up logging by the end.
Golden Gate Canyon
Drive 30 minutes outside of Denver and spend a day, weekend, or longer (there are campsites, yurts, cabins, and guest houses) exploring the 36-mile stretch of trails this area has to offer. There are designated areas for mountain biking, as long as the weather cooperates, and different levels of hiking year-round. Start easy and work your way up to the more difficult paths. Dogs are welcome too as long as they are kept on a 6-foot leash at all times, so feel free to bring any canine friends along. With forests, creeks, and plenty of picture-worthy views, Golden Gate Canyon has it all.
Royal Arch Trail
Royal Arch Trail is as picturesque as it is popular. You’ll find quite the crowd on this 3.2-mile loop. It has a 1,433-ft. elevation and is rated difficult, mostly due to how steep the trail gets. However, the views are worth the up-and-down terrain. There are also stairs involved as part of this hike, great for working the legs and glutes.
Plan for plenty of water breaks as you work your way to the top. A few tips: wear sturdy shoes and start earlier in the day to prevent overheating. It’s a great workout to get the heart pumping while spending the day outside.
Whether you’re riding solo or decide to buddy up, hiking and biking are great ways to stay active in a fun way. Think of Denver as your outdoor playground where there’s more than enough room for everyone to hang out. There are so many paths to choose from; you can head down a new one every week. The next time you want to get active outdoors, think about switching up your workout by heading to the trails.