Two Colorado Hiking Trails Rank Among Best in Nation, According to Travel & Leisure

Earlier this year, Travel & Leisure released its list of the best hikes in the United States, making 18 selections spread across the country. Two Colorado hikes have been selected to be featured.

The first Colorado hike to make the unranked list was Chautauqua Trail in Boulder’s Chautauqua Park. At only 2 miles long and with a drop of 419 feet, this trail is very popular with beginner and intermediate hikers, leading to other trails such as the Flatirons hike and the Royal Arch hike – two standout hikes as well. The Chautauqua Trail offers hikers stunning views of the iconic Boulder Flatirons, as well as many wildflowers in late spring and early summer.

The second trail to make the unranked list of the best hikes in America was the trail to the summit of Mount Ida at 12,865 feet. This one is a bit more intense than Chautauqua Trail, rated as “difficult” by AllTrails. Stretching 15 miles and climbing to 2,358 feet, this one isn’t for the faint of heart. It’s worth noting that this one is located in Rocky Mountain National Park, so in addition to the epic high mountain views, expect an entrance fee and possible reservations.

Are these two hikes definitely the two best hikes in Colorado? It’s hard to say. Colorado has so many hikes that choosing two would be a selection for debate.

I love that the first hike, Chautauqua Trail, offers a shorter, more accessible option for those looking for a Colorado adventure. While it might not be as intense as many other trails in the state, it does give hikers a good view of Colorado with the option to continue on more difficult trails and a longer hiking experience. Plus, it’s located in the Boulder area which is a fun place to hang out on the Front Range.

When it comes to hiking Mount Ida, it’s hard to go wrong with a hike to the top of Rocky Mountain National Park as long as it matches the skill level of a hiker. Mount Ida is the 21st highest peak in the park among nearly 100 peaks, depending on who you ask. It is sure to offer great views depending on the weather and will provide all the adventure.

If you had to pick two hikes in Colorado that are better than the others, which would they be? Let us know in the comments below.

See the full list here.


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