During these trying times we need our open spaces now more than ever. Nature and physical activity help to maintain mental and physical health. However, social distancing is necessary to help keep our community from spreading coronavirus. In order to maintain a six-foot barrier, we need to spread out and avoid crowding on our more popular trails and in parks.  Our team is busy putting together some suggestions for alternative outdoor spaces that we are finding to be less crowded. When possible stick close to home and check out your local park or trails. But if those trails and parks are overcrowded or if you don’t have easy access to one, we are providing a comprehensive list.

The map below is interactive. you can zoom in and out to your neighborhood. Find local parks within walking distance or are near a bike lane or urban trail.

Walks

BOULDER PARK WALK

This quick less than 2 mile loop is mild and flat, primarily on sidewalks.  Shooks Run Trail is 12 miles long, you could extend your walk. Parking is available at Boulder or Mid Shooks Run Park. 

The Reflection Pond Near Chapel Hills and Research

One of the few neighborhood parks with a pond, a great park with a .3 mile walking path with ample benches.  This park is perfect for wildlife viewing, forest bathing, easy walking, stroller walking and photography.

SANDCREEK NEAR BARNES

Where the paved portion of the Northern Sand Creek trail begins.  Take a right out of the parking lot and take a half mile walk on a dirt trail or take a left and connect to the paved Sand Creek Trail.  Slight uphill walk following the Sand Creek.

Cheyenne Meadows Park & Fishers Canyon Creek Path

Neighborhood park that has picnic tables, benches, playground/basketball courts and large grass field.  There is a .25 mile concrete path around the park.  Fishers Canyon Creek Path is a small dirt path leading from the southern part of the park and goes east to Eastmeadow Rd.  South of Cheyenne Meadows is a dog park next to Antero Elementary.   

Walkin with Willow 

Mild 4 mile walk on Homestead and Cottonwood Creek Trails. These are paved trails that run along side some lovely creeks. Walk starts at Fred McKown Park, street parking available. There are no restroom facilities along this route; trash cans are available sporadically.

SINTON TRAIL

Great options for a quick 20 minute walk (up to the pond and back) or for a longer 3.5 mile family walk. Trail is paved and crosses only 2 small streets. Slight uphill on way out with great views, but all downhill on the way back! Easy access from parking lot with tons of parking.

Cottonwood Creek Trail Loop

This is an urban 2.7 mile loop using natural and concrete paths/trails with 288 feet of elevation gain.  Ample parking at Woodland Hills Park and with numerous neighborhood points of access. Great views of Cottonwood Creek and Pikes Peak.  This trail is perfect for people looking for easy jogging and biking, birding and dog walking. 

Little known trail into GOG

While The “Central Garden” may be too crowded to allow “social distancing”, this little known trail provides views and solitude.

Homestead Trail and high chaparral Open Space

This moderate 3 mile trek takes you out on the Homestead Trail and shows you an access point for a loop in High Chaparral Open Space. High Chaparral Open Space has a small parking lot which provides convenient access for both the Homestead Trail and the Open Space. So, you have great options for taking a hike or a walk.

Rampart Park 
Large parking lot, dog park and walking paths, this neighborhood park has it all. Wide concrete trail through scrub oak Meadows.  Options for longer walks. Recommended for walking, strollers, dogs and jogging.

Neighborhood Parks

Keller Park

A quiet neighborhood park with lots of space to spread out.  Flat fields for playing with a ball or flying a kite, three playgrounds, softball field, and hills for sledding.

Pinion Valley Park Stroll

This gem of a neighborhood park is located behind Ute Valley Park in the Pinion Valley neighborhood. It has easy access and ample on-street parking located around 3 sides and has multiple ADA pedestrian ramps. The sidewalk paths make a wonderful and kiddo-friendly figure 8 of 1.6 miles in length and there are multiple benches located along for resting and taking in the wonderful views. A bonus is access to Ute Valley Park just up Pinion Park Drive that allows a short walk up to the overlook that has a beautiful view of the park and out to the east.

Vista Park in Banning Lewis Ranch

A quiet neighborhood park with impressive amenities. Dog park, large playground, music playground, wide walking paths (natural surface for jogging available), flat fields, pickleball courts and large parking lot.  There is access to a larger network of natural surface trails through neighborhood open space from this park.

Bike Rides

LEGACY LOOP CRUISIN’

This mostly flat 9.5 mile route takes in the Pikes Peak Greenway and Shooks Run Trails making a loop around downtown Colorado Springs along the beautiful creekways, using the on-street connections on north and south to #LinkTheLoop

PRING RANCH PARK AND STETSON HILLS OPEN SPACE

Stetson Hills Open Space has a mild dirt single track trail that is roughly 1/2 mile long. There are several neighborhood access points along the way and it connects into Pring Ranch Park. Good park with open field, play ground, basketball court and swings. 

SAND CREEK TRAIL IN SOUTHEAST COLORADO SPRINGS

This section of the Sand Creek Trail in Southeast Colorado Springs is a wonderful family-friendly 3.6 mile bike ride (and walk) and is easily accessed by biking or walking in from Wildflower Park, a beautiful park itself. The wide paved trail takes you across a beautiful bridge and allows connection to Sagebrush Park a little over 1/2 mile north. Additional length can be had by continuing south on the trail beyond Fountain Blvd. There is a great pavilion and benches located along the trail and a permanent bathroom facility located on the north end of Wildflower Park.

OLD FARM PARK

Great neighborhood park with on street parking and access to Homestead Trail. Take a steep 0.8 mile hike or ride up to the top of the ridge. It has an awesome view of the neighborhood and Pikes Peak. 

HIGH CHAPARRAL OPEN SPACE

High Chaparral is 52 acres of open space. The trail system is well marked and offers a few different loops, the largest outer loop is roughly 2 miles. There is a small parking lot off of Stetson Hills Blvd and on street parking in old farm neighborhood. 

Hikes

FAMILY HIKE AT CLEAR SPRING RANCH

An El Paso County Open Space south of Fountain, CO off of I-25 near PPIR.  Easy hiking with a .8 mile loop trail through grassland and cottonwoods along Fountain Creek.  Opportunities for longer hikes exist using the marked Front Range trail.  Excellent covered picnic area with pit bathrooms.  Great family hike with large tire strollers, birding/wildlife/wildflower viewing. 

LINCOLN MT OPEN SPACE HIKE

876 acres with meadows and rolling grasslands. This open space and its large parking lot is rarely crowded. Just inside Douglas County off Highway 83 on Jones Rd., there is an open bathroom and several trail options for all ages and abilities.

Southern Blodgett Open Space

Parking in small dirt lot off of Woodmen Road near Orchard Valley Road.  This hike is a very challenging .7 mile hike with both a steep uphill and downhill portion.  There are amazing 360 degree views, wildlife and wildflowers in the spring.  For this hike, I went up the South Blodgett trail and came down the Oak Valley trail (no signage present).

Ute Valley Park Hike

Moderate 2.5 mile hike on dirt trails with awesome views of pikes peak, geological features and archaeological resources. Ute Valley Park is 538 acres with numerous multi-use trail options varying greatly in character and level of physical challenge. This park is popular for hiking, mountain biking, trail running and dog walking. 

Map of Ute Valley Park

SUNSET MESA Hike

This is a 2.5 mile trail through the Sunset Mesa Open Space.  Easy to moderate hike with very little traffic.  Narrow dirt footpath that can get a bit muddy.  Stunning views and interesting rock formations.

MONUMENT ROCK HIKE

Just west of Monument on Mt Herman Road. Several parking options available. Short, medium and long hikes. Undulating terrain, a pond, rock, pine forest, wetlands, old cabin ruins –  Monument Preserve has it all!

AUSTIN BLUFFS FROM UNIVERSITY PARK BLV

Great option if you are looking for a quick 20 minute hike with the kids. Lots of places to stop and explore. This trail connects to a network of trails, so you can extend your hike. Easy to access from on street parking on University Park Blvd.

UTE VALLEY PARK-EAST END

Ute Valley Park East Side. Much less crowded than west side. Access from I-25 Rockrimmon exit. Past Pro Rodeo Drive. Left on Ute Valley Trail. Trailhead just past roundabout.

Woodmen Valley Park and the Ridgeline Trail

Northwest Colorado Springs neighborhood Park with Fantastic short trails. Natural path trails (perfect for families with older children) with rock formations and amazing views.  The neighborhood park has a wide concrete sidewalk, picnic tables/benches, and large playing fields.  Parking along Woodmen Road. 

OLD FARM PARK (W/ TRAIL CONNECTION)

This is a small neighborhood park that connects to the Homestead Trail. It makes a nice half mile in an out family or dog walk.  Or you can continue on or High Chaparral Open Space.  Paved (but bumpy!) trail with option to take a dirt trail to higher terrain.

TEMPLETON TRAIL IN PALMER PARK

A quiet area on the northeast side of Palmer Park.  Street parking on Brenner PL.  This .6 mile narrow natural surface route is moderate due to quick elevation gain and rocks to navigate.  Fantastic views and awesome rock formations highlight this urban wilderness.  Recommended for weekday early morning hikes. 

SPRUCE MOUNTAIN OPEN SPACE

Spruce Mountain  open Space offers short and long hikes. Just 3 miles north of Palmer Lake on Spruce Mountain Rd. Dogs must be on a leash. Large parking lot.

Parks Director Provides Guidance for Safe Use of Parks

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