Denver’s Best Hikes for Kids from Colorado Mountain Mamas
posted by: Amber Johnson
Do you love to hike or want to become more comfortable in the outdoors? Colorado Mountain Mamas’ (CMM) mission is to provide a safe and welcoming hiking experience for all levels of hikers from newborns with their moms to school-age kids, no matter your fitness level or expertise.
I first met CMM Founder Joy Opp 11 years ago when I was a sleep-deprived mom of my colicky firstborn. Not only was hiking with my daughter a great way to spend the day in the beautiful Front Range, but the friends I made are still among my dearest today.
CMM has evolved from just a hiking group for moms to include toddler hikes, stroller walks, hikes for school-age kids and snowshoeing…all for moms with their children.
Here are some of Joy’s recommended hikes for moms with new babies, in-shape moms who carry their babies and little walkers.
LOOKOUT MOUNTAIN NATURE CENTER, MEADOW LOOP TRAIL
This is a 1.5 mile hike that includes forests as well as a beautiful meadow. The start of this hike is at a high elevation, but there is not much elevation gain on the trail. And the quiet beauty is unsurpassed!
REYNOLDS PARK, ELKHORN INTERPRETIVE TRAIL
Plan on a bit of a drive to this gorgeous park! The Elkhorn trail is about 1.5 miles and has an interpretive brochure that guides you through the interesting terrain and features of the park. Mostly flat, this area has a good mix of shade and sun. The altitude is higher and the weather will be cooler at this location. Don’t miss this educational and beautiful hike!
SOUTH VALLEY PARK, COYOTE SONG TRAIL
Although it’s close to the metro area, this area is quiet and wildlife abounds. This hike is about 2 miles and is mostly flat – great for first-time hikers and anyone interested in a gentle hike.
ALDERFER/THREE SISTERS, HIDDEN FAWN TRAIL
This beautiful park has spectacular views, and many interesting trail-side curiosities including the “Three Sisters” rock formation. The Hidden Fawn trail is flat and then merges with the Sisters trail for great views and shady trees. This hike is 2.5 miles.
ELK MEADOW OPEN SPACE, SLEEPY S LOOP
This beautiful hike is 2.5 miles and has some moderate ascents and descents – great work out. This hike is in Evergreen and is at a higher elevation so the temps will be cooler and the weather a bit more unpredictable.
WHITE RANCH, MAVERICK TRAIL
The Maverick Trail starts flat and then climbs down to some spectacular city over looks! The trail is mostly shaded and at higher elevation, so it will be cooler than in the city. We climb gently back to the trail head for a total of 2.8 gorgeous miles! Definitely one of the prettiest hikes around!
Best for little walkers:
GLENDALE OPEN SPACE
This open space park has great smooth trails perfect for little walkers. This hike is about 1.6 miles and explores a great rock formation. There is a stream through the park that makes for loads of fun throwing sticks! And keep your eyes out for the plum bushes!
MAXWELL FALLS, UPPER TRAIL HEAD
Finding waterfalls is a blast for anyone, and especially kids! Maxwell Falls are certainly not the most dramatic falls in the state, but the sound of rushing water and the mist rising as it tumbles over the rocks is pretty cool. Park at the upper trail head and walk along the creek in search of the falls.
CARSON NATURE CENTER
This hike is just over a half mile and explores this gorgeous area filled with many interesting types of plants. The trail is wide and well maintained and perfect for new hikers. Kids two and up will enjoy looking for birds, bugs, and branches along the trail.
CHATFIELD AUDUBON CENTER NATURE TRAIL
Let the kids explore nature at their pace, including plenty of breaks for playing on the rocks or in the dirt and mud! The whole loop is just under a mile, or head out and back at your own pace. As the name implies, the Audubon center is a sanctuary for birds so if you have some, bring kid-sized binoculars and see what you can spot!
Colorado Mountain Mamas is now free. Be sure to check-out their summer schedule of events!