This article is brought to you by RōM Outdoors, the leader in innovative, multi-use outdoor backpack design. Bring their signature RōM pack on day hikes near Denver and you can transform it into a blanket for a mid-hike picnic, or a poncho if one of those summer storms sneak up on you. 


Colorado has long been one of the gems of the west. I can’t count how many friends, colleagues, and family members have uprooted their lives and staked their claim in the Centennial state. And who can blame them? 53 peaks rise over 14,000′ throughout the Rockies, which totals more than any other state in the U.S. (almost double the amount in Alaska).



You don’t have to venture far from the state’s largest city to enjoy outdoor adventures. The Colorado-based nonprofit, Conservation-scorecard, ranks Denver number one in outdoor recreation. It’s also number one in access to public lands and responsible energy development, so locals and visitors can enjoy the surrounding nature with the confidence that their city is working hard to protect it.

Don’t forget the beer. Colorado is home to 4 of the top 50 breweries in the U.S., which you can enjoy a mile above sea level in Denver — home to around 50 breweries itself.

Visitors beware: Denver’s elevation can make hiking (and beer) hit you harder, with fewer oxygen molecules on the move from your lungs to your veins to your heart.

The next time you’re in the area, pack a beer in your backpack and hit one of these great day hikes near Denver. You don’t have to go far for a great workout and some killer views that showcase why so many outdoor lovers just can’t get enough of Colorado.

These Day Hikes Near Denver Are the Perfect Way to Get Outside

There are so many reasons to visit the city of Denver. But while you’re there, don’t forget to squeeze in some of that fresh (albeit oxygen-low) air that Colorado is famous for. These 5 day hikes are easy to reach from the Denver area, so you can be back with plenty of time for a beer downtown.

1. Chicago Lakes Trail

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Location: Idaho Springs, CO
Distance: 8.7 miles
Elevation gain: 1,860′
Dogs: On leash

This popular trail, less than 45 minutes from Denver, passes by three alpine lakes. While the Chicago Lakes Trail makes for a steep trek, the scenery will make you forget about your huffin’ and puffin’. Start at Echo Lake Campground and enjoy the granite faces, snowcapped peaks, and streams coursing with winter runoff.


Related Reading:

RōM Outdoors Pack Turns into a Poncho and a Picnic Blanket


Devil’s Head Fire Tower Lookout

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Location: Sedalia, CO
Distance: 2.5 miles
Elevation: 885′
Dogs: On leash

Rated #1 of 155 trails in Pike National Forest by AllTrails users, the Devil’s Head trail holds historic value. At the end of the hike, a firetower sits upon an outcropping of rocks and is the only lookout in Colorado staffed by the Forest Service. From the lookout, hikers see nothing but Rocky Mountain peaks for miles and miles.

Horseshoe Trail to Frazer Meadow

Location: Golden, CO
Distance: 3.8 miles
Elevation: 935′
Dogs: On leash

Mark time on your calendar in the summer or fall to hike Horseshoe Trail. During the summer, a host of wildflowers bloom in the meadow, and in fall, quaky aspen shift from green to yellow to orange to red. Navigate a well-defined trail over scattered rocks and packed dirt to an open meadow where you could spot wildlife if you’re lucky. A few backcountry campsites are also accessible from the Horseshoe Trail.

Bridal Veil Falls

Location: Estes Park, CO
Distance: 6 miles
Elevation: 994′
Dogs: No

Don’t forget the hat and sunscreen on this 6-mile hike through meadows, streams, and a few shaded areas. The first portion of the hike lacks tree cover and hikers can expect mosquitos in the height of summer. But don’t let that deter you! As one of the more popular day hikes near Denver, this trail won’t disappoint as it reveals a treasure at the end: Bridal Veil Falls.

Eldorado Canyon Trail

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Location: Eldorado Springs, CO
Distance: 6.2 miles
Elevation: 1,945′
Dogs: On leash

A Boulder, CO locals favorite, Eldorado Canyon State Park, roughly 9 miles from downtown, is a mecca for hiking, climbing, and fishing. The Eldorado Canyon Trail goes out 3.1 miles where it turns at South Boulder Creek. Anglers, bring your rods. With no road access, South Boulder Creek is the place to go for solitude and enormous hatches of Caddis, Midges, and more.


Megan Walsh

Megan Walsh

Megan dreams of one day being a professional recreationalist, and welcomes any and all tips on how to get there. When she isn’t climbing, skiing, or enjoying shavasana, she’s drinking coffee and furiously typing away at her computer––or watching Netflix. Her work has been featured in Climbing Magazine, Utah Adventure Journal, and on Moja Gear.