The Rocky Mountain State is home to extensive ranges of rugged terrains with striking features sprawling the region's landscape. Additionally, these natural features are easily accessible, making them ideal grounds for outdoor activities like hiking and horseback riding.

Besides that, several historical landmarks also lie along these stunning features making up awesome scenery. Great geological foundations and glacier lakes make a significant part of the mountainous surroundings. Travelers flock to the multiple trailheads strewn across the state's parks to explore the wildlife while taking a respite from the bustling Denver.

10 Meadow And Forest Loop Trails

Within the Lookout Mountain Nature Center lies a short nature trailhead, the Meadow and Forest Loop Trails. The pleasant hike meanders past ponderosa pines and meadows of stunning wildflowers. Additionally, interpretive signs lie along the trail guiding tourists through the walk.

The trail also features wildlife watching with underground animals pacing across the meadows, including squirrels, rabbits, and birds like bluebirds. Hikers also pass past the Boettcher Mansion, a hunting lodge built in 1917 by Charles Boettcher, a wealthy Denver businessman.

  • Distance: 1.6 miles
  • Ascent: 840 feet

Related: 10 Must-Take Road Trips Through Colorado

9 Trading Post Trail At Red Rocks Park

Considered the main hiking event in Red Rocks Park, the Trading Post Trail involves a short hike looping around the iconic red rock formations. These geological formations sprawl the Denver Mountain Parks System, making them the crown jewel. Tourists will enjoy the picturesque view of these rock formations that look hand-carved.

But the trail is easy as tourists follow the well-maintained path enjoying the striking views across the track. It further guides travelers around the prominent Colorado sandstone red rocks while taking them near the mesmerizing open-air amphitheater.

  • Distance: 1.5 miles
  • Ascent: 364 feet

Related: These Historic Tours Are Why Colorado Is The Perfect State For History Lovers

8 Waterton Canyon Hike

Waterton Canyon offers various outdoor activities while hosting different types of wildlife, including the bighorn sheep. Located 22 miles from the bustling Mile High City, the canyon features several landmarks, including a reservoir maintained by Denver Water.

The trail starts in the Waterton Canyon, ending in the Strontia Springs Dam. It's 12.4 miles long, rising 688 feet in elevation. The distance and reservoirs set the trail as the ideal place for tourists to explore various outdoor activities, including fishing and horseback riding.

  • Distance: 6.2 miles
  • Ascent: 688 feet

7 South Valley Park Trails

Behind the first layer of the Rocky Mountains' foothills lies a popular trail network accessed by the North Trailhead. These two clusters of trails crisscross the South Valley Park offering pique views of the red rock formations across the park.

Along the way also lies a series of spires, small cliffs, wildlife settings, and large swathes of meadows. Above the landscape, mountain bluebirds soar the skies, with the underfoot being filled with chipmunks, rabbits, mice, and prairie rattlesnakes.

  • Distance: 7.7 miles
  • Ascent: 440 feet

6 Fountain Valley Trail At Roxborough State Park

The Fountain Valley Trail winds through the most magnificent landscape in the park, including Lyons Rock formations. Other features across the paths include the Fountain, historical buildings, including the Persse House, and stunning ecosystems.

Additionally, various habitats lie along the path, housing the wildlife featured in the area. Hiking through the site takes about one and a half hours to two hours. The hike takes tourists through verdant broad, open meadows that make the perfect habitat for animals.

  • Distance: 2.3 miles
  • Ascent: 367 feet

5 Huntsman Gulch Trail In Clear Creek Canyon

Located on Highway Six in Clear Creek Canyon, Huntsman Gulch features magnificent views culminating in a rock tower that acts as a vantage point. A locked gate with boulders at the other side restricting motorized access provides hikers with accessibility to the trail.

The trail travels up through the Huntsman Gulch, taking tourists past an old quarry and interesting geological features, including a saddle and a gorge. The trail finally ends at the ridge's summit, providing a vantage point for viewing the surrounding.

  • Distance: 1.75 miles

4 North Table Mountain Via Rim Rock Loop

When open, the Rim Rock Loop provides the perfect extension of the North Table Mountain Loop. It covers over 2000 acres of grass prairie, featuring a 500-tall mesa near the foothills. The mesa core is made of lava emanating from the Ralston Dike a few miles away.

Wildlife like the mule deer, rabbits, and coyotes, among many, lie across the grasslands while birds fly in the skies, including falcons, eagles, and hawks nesting on vertical cliffs. Crisscrossing the mesa top, the Rim Rock Loop features multiple trail splits consisting of riparian corridors that house wildlife.

  • Distance: 1.5 miles

3 Glacier Gorge Trailhead

A popular trailhead in Rocky Mountain National Park, the Glacier Gorge Trailhead is the perfect tour to explore cascading waterfalls, stunning cliffs, and alpine lakes. The geological features lie along the trails, including the gorge formed from receding glaciers from the last ice age.

The Glacier Gorge Trailhead houses numerous hikes with amazing scenery, like Alberta Falls and Andrews Glacier. Tourists visit the gorge for all-day hiking experiences that connect them to Bear Lake and several other magnificent features.

2 Elk Meadow Trail

Lying in Elk Meadow Park, the Elk Meadow Trail takes tourists through open space featuring herds of elk. The paths further wind through lower meadows and ponderosa pines. To form the loop, travelers combine the Meadow View Trail, Elk Ridge Trail, and the Sleepy 'S' Trail.

Additionally, to make it easier, travelers hike the 2.6-mile loop clockwise. While for a strenuous hike, tourists approach the trail in an anticlockwise manner.

1 Deer Creek Canyon Loop Trail

Deer Creek Canyon Park features trails that take equestrians and hikers through the park. On multi-use trails, bikers enjoy the experience of exploring The Wall, a steep section of Plymouth Creek Trail.

Of all trails in the park, Meadowlark is perfect for families as it offers excellent views with lots of manageable ups and downs. Also, along this trail lies picnic tables, mud puddles, a natural play area, a viewpoint, wildlife, and shaded hikes.