Thursday, November 11, 2021

flying solo // colorado hikes

I'm done waiting for someone to go places with. Time to get out and fly solo.

I started to get into hiking my 4th year in Colorado. Spurred by my need to get out of the house (COVID) and feel like myself again after a break up, hiking has become something I am passionate about and am excited to do each weekend. Here are my favorite hikes in my first year of solo hiking Colorado!

*Butler Gulch Trail - This was one of my first real hikes! I barely got out 30 minutes and back. Then I went back this summer and made it to the top and wow was it hard BUT the view was awe inspiring. I sat up top and just basked in what I had done and the amazing views.

*Booth Falls - From the get go this one was tough. Luckily I run at elevation otherwise I'm not sure how I could have done this. I guess it all comes down to taking it slow. It is not a race. At the end of each hike I'm always happy I made the effort because the waterfall at the top was the perfect place to rest and eat lunch!

*Golden Gate Canyon State Park - THE Autumn FALLorado hiking spot! A MUST SEE! WOW!

*The Paint Mines - My bestie took me here right after my break up and we watched the sunset and the colors change against the rocks. I came back a few months later and hiked through the mines. This is another place that I keep wanting to come back to time and time again. 

*Rock Park Loop Trail to the top of Castle Rock - When I started this hike, I did not know what the top had in store for me. I thought the trail would take me right to the top of Castle Rock. Nope. Once to the top of the trail head, you had to free climb to the top of the rock. I was so scared! But a bunch of teenagers were doing it and I had come all this way so I had to! And I did! Never again, but happy I did!

*Castlewood Canyon State Park - Here is another one my bestie told me about! This was the perfect late Autumn day to hike around the Canyon. There were so many different twists and turns to hike through and discover. So many different views to see. I even found a great Goodwill on the drive home. Win, win!

*Beaver Brook Watershed Trailhead - When I head out to Evergreen, it is usually to the lake (see below) but for this hike, I went way out into the wilderness. I felt very alone on this hike and it was super easy, all downhill. I had a nice sit by the water and sat and took it all in. The way back was ALL uphill and I was super sore the next day! Here is where I was able to try out hiking boots for the first time and started to feel like a real hiker!

*Elk Meadow Park Stagecoach Trailhead - Another Evergreen goodie! This was such a diverse hike. It started out in an open meadow and then took a turn up into a wooded area and ended at this gorgeous barn! This was a pretty long hike but it felt easy the entire time. This was one of my very first longer hikes and when I knew I was hooked!

*Evergreen Lake - Not really a hike but this is MY go to place to re-center myself. I've been here more times than I can count. I'll always keep coming back for more! I love reading on a bench, soaking in the sun and walking the mile loop.

I am grateful to have friends, family and the All Trails app to guide me to the most beautiful places to hike in Colorado. There are so many I'll never be done. That makes me happy. I'm excited to keep adventuring!


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