Go take a hike!
What might normally be a command to get out of sight is actually an appropriate and polite statement when you live in the Denver South area. But when you’ve got a family in tow, getting out for a classic-Colorado hike instantly becomes more difficult.
Not to worry, we’ve got some of the best hikes that offer a dose of nature, are appropriate for kids of all ages and are easy to access for anyone living in Denver South.
Here are four of our top picks for taking a hike with the kiddos:
Bear Creek Trail, Lair O’ the Bear Park
This is the quintessential Denver-area hike when you’ve got little ones in tow. There are plenty of options more adventurous exploring, all the way up a 12.6-mile round-trip journey, but for families you can expect about 2 miles of easy exploration.
The trails are wide, although strollers and wagons will have a tough time getting over all of the bumps and branches — unless you’ve got something that’s pretty rugged.
Enjoy lunch at one of the many picnic tables, hike up the short crest to get a great view, or fish in the creek. Just keep an eye out for mountain bikers.
About a 30-minute drive from downtown Littleton, it’s an easy escape that the whole family will enjoy.
Fountain Valley Trail, Roxborough State Park
Just about 20 minutes from the Denver South region, Roxborough State Park offers stunning red-rock formations jutting from the earth.
You’ll have to leave your pooch at home, as no dogs are allowed. But neither are bikes, camping, horses or anything else that would damage this well-preserved haven. That also makes it great for little ones, since you don’t have to worry about them being run over by an over-zealous mountain biker.
Do keep an eye out for wildlife though, as there is a lot of to be found here, from red foxes to mule deer.
The trail itself is a 2.3-mile loop, with just a few bumps along the way. There is a fee to get in, but it’s just $7 per vehicle. Well worth it for a day at this pristine park.
Wetlands Preserve, Cherry Creek State Park
While most visitors are clogging up the sandy lake shore, you can sneak away for a fun, easy hike on this tucked away trail located on the south side of the Cherry Creek Reservoir.
Wetlands Preserve is a loop that clocks in at just under 2 miles, right around when your kids start asking to be picked up. Literally minutes away from the Denver Tech Center, you can even sneak in some family hiking time during the weekdays.
There are no fees, but there are also no pets, bikes or horses allowed.
Bear Creek Trail, Denver trail system
Not to be confused with its namesake above, this Bear Creek Trail is perfect for a dose of nature smack dab in the middle of Denver South.
Start at the Bear Creek Greenbelt and make your way along the creek with mostly-paved trails perfect for strollers and wagons. Stop for a creek-side lunch or bring the fishing poles along.
More good news for families: the parks along the trail feature permanent, maintained restrooms.
Hiking is part of the Colorado lifestyle, but we can’t always get away to the back trails and peaks outside of Denver. Especially when you have young ones in tow, these trails will give you that dose of nature without having to spend months planning the trip.