You don’t have to travel far from Denver to experience the adventures that the Rockies have to offer. Red rock formations, mountain peaks and wildlife can all be enjoyed at Roxborough State Park. A leisurely stroll down a hiking trail can reward the visitor with the meeting of mule deer or a fox. Less frequently, but not ruled out, are sightings of black bear, bobcat or mountain lions. Even if you don’t see the bigger wildlife, a watchful eye will spot signs that they have recently visited the trail.
A Bit of Wilderness in the Metro Area at Roxborough State Park
The rock formations in the park are as fragile as they are beautiful and rock climbing is not allowed in Roxborough. Enjoy the views of the spires, formations of red rock and the red sandstone ridges from the trails or the scenic overlooks that dot the park.
A challenging hike up the 7,160 foot high Carpenter Peak will offer the view of downtown Denver as well as miles of countryside that surrounds the park. The trail to the peak is 6.4 miles long.
Bring a pair of binoculars to the park as it is a great area to watch the birds. Meet with others who enjoy birding by joining one of the naturalist guided hikes. The hikes are planned for nature lovers of all ability levels, so you can be sure that gasping for breath instead of viewing won’t be a problem during the walk.
Pack a picnic lunch to make a day of exploring Roxborough State Park. There are no specific picnic facilities provided, but there are benches scattered along the trails. Check the trail map to find the location of the benches and enjoy the meal in the midst of nature with the birds providing the background music.
The patio of the Visitors Center can also be used by diners who bring their own food and don’t want to carry it with them on their hikes. Small tables and benches are placed for scenic views while eating.
The peaceful beauty of the park has made it a popular wedding venue. Two scenic outlooks are available that are perfect for one of the most important days in a couple’s life or for another special event.
Contact Todd Farrow, the Park Manager to make a reservation for a small gathering as the outlooks only have room for 25 guests.
Fountain Valley Overlook is only about 100 yards from the Visitor Center, while the Lyons Overlook is a half mile hike, but well worth it.
While the Roxborough State Park offers so many outdoor pleasures, be sure to stop in at the Visitor Center to learn more about the flora and fauna of the area. You’ll also find the rest rooms and book store in the center.
If You Go
It’s hard to believe that such a wonderful opportunity to commune with Rocky Mountain nature exists right in the Denver Metro Area, but Roxborough is found just southwest of the city in Littleton.
4751 Roxborough Drive
Littleton, CO 80125
E-mail: [email protected]
If you plan to schedule a gathering, call the manager’s office at 303-973-5959, extension 11.
Roxborough is a day use park. During the summer, it’s open from 7:00 in the morning to 8 in the evening, and office hours are from 9 to 4.
Photos courtesy of Colorado State Parks.
Golden eagle photo by Terrell Campbell.