Red Rocks Hiking Trails [Hiking Near Denver, Colorado]

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Denver, Colorado is a city known for its outdoor recreation. Hiking, biking, and rock climbing are just a few of the activities you’ll come across.

One thing Denver is known for is Red Rocks Park and Amphitheatre. In addition to this gorgeous concert venue, there are some great Red Rocks hiking trails you should check out.

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Red Rocks Park and Amphitheatre

Location: 18300 W. Alameda Parkway, Morrison, Colorado 80465

Red Rocks Park Hours: 1 hour before sunrise to 1 hour after sunset

Red Rocks Amphitheatre Hours:

  • Non-event days: 1 hour before sunrise to 1 hour after sunset
  • Event days: 1 hour before sunrise to approximately 2 p.m. (check phone recording at 720-865-2494 for up-to-date closing information on event days)

Driving Distance from Denver: 25 minutes

Elevation: 6,200 feet above sea level

Dining: Ship Rock Grille | Open Daily from 10:30 a.m. – 2:30 p.m. daily

Shopping: Trading Post

Colorado Music Hall of Fame: Located in the Trading Post; Open 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Red Rocks Hiking Trails:

  • Funicular Trail
  • Geologic Overlook Trail
  • Mt. Vernon Creek Trail
  • Red Rocks Trail
  • Trading Post Trail

Red Rocks Hiking Trails near Denver Colorado


Just 15 miles to the west of Denver, Red Rocks Park and Amphitheatre is a must-see attraction.  The amphitheatre is famous for outdoor summer concerts and the surrounding park area is a nature lover’s dream.

There are beautiful trails at Red Rocks for hiking and biking — and even horseback riding!  The park is over 6,000 ft above sea level and offers landscapes representative of both the mountains and the plains.  Common animal sightings include prairie dogs, rabbits, red foxes, and Mule deer.

Read More: If you’re looking for more hiking near Denver, check out these great hikes in Boulder, Colorado.

The Amphitheatre might be the coolest concert venue I have ever seen. It’s built into the monstrous red rocks which lend a dramatic backdrop to summer concerts under the stars. The chances of parking close are pretty slim so be prepared to walk uphill or up lots of stairs from your car.
This is a popular spot for boot camp type exercisers as well as stair master addicts.  Be sure to climb to the top of the amphitheater for some amazing views of Denver.
red rocks amphitheatre near Denver Colorado
The views from the top of Red Rocks Amphitheatre are incredible.

Red Rocks Hiking Trails

Funicular Trail

The Funicular Trail at Red Rocks Park is for pedestrians only. It’s a short, steep trail that connects the Upper North Lot to a parking area on Trading Post Road.

Geologic Overlook Trail

The Geologic Overlook Trail is a short, pedestrian-only trail located in the northwest corner of the park. It’s a trail of moderate difficulty that ends in gorgeous views.

Mt. Vernon Creek Trail

The Mt. Vernon Creek Trail is a short 1-mile hike that offers beautiful views of the Amphitheatre. It connects into the Trading Post Trail near the Lower South Parking Lot.

Views from the Red Rocks Hiking Trails
Views from the beautiful Red Rocks hiking trails.

Red Rocks Trail

Red Rocks Trail is a 6-mile loop that takes you through Red Rocks Parks and connects to Matthew Winters Park. This trail features a 1,300′ elevation gain, so be cautious if you aren’t used to the altitude. The trail is multi-use and can accommodate, mountain bikes, horses, and dogs on leashes.

There is almost no shade so frequent users advise hiking here in the early morning or later in the evening to avoid the midday sun. Regardless of when you hike, be sure to use a high-quality mineral sunscreen to protect your skin.

Trading Post Trail

The Trading Post Loop Trail is perfect for beginners or anyone looking to take in the area’s natural beauty without a strenuous hike.  It is an easy 1.4-mile loop that takes you through the beautiful Red Rocks that the park is named after.

There is a 500′ elevation gain, but it’s not steep in any location. The trail can be narrow in spots and it does cross a few roads, but there is nothing too tricky about it.

The trail sign warns of rattlesnakes and mountain lions and claims that these are rare but possible, sightings.  Thankfully, all we saw were some deer, but we almost missed them!

I thought there was a runner behind us so I moved to the side and kept walking. Once I turned around I realized there wasn’t a runner but 3 huge deer that had passed right behind us. They were pretty far away by the time I got a picture.

Red Rocks hiking Trails
See the deer?!

Denver, Colorado Activities

Denver, Colorado is a great place to visit. There are great places to eat (check out this great breakfast spot), a great craft beer scene, lots of shopping, and plenty of outdoor activities.


Final Thoughts

I really enjoyed my Red Rocks hikes. Even if you aren’t a fan of hiking, make a point to drive out to the amphitheater for some amazing views and scenery.

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This Post Has 7 Comments

  1. Thomas

    Greatest music venue of all time.
    & a cool area. Missing CO now.

    1. Katie Seemann

      Hi Thomas,
      Yes, I have heard from many different people that it’s the BEST place for concerts! One of these days I want to make it back to see a show there. Thanks for reading!

  2. I just LOVE the colour and the rocks – possibly because they remind me of what I often see while travelling in Australia! I’ve heard before of the amazing similarities between Australia and this area, but your photos really show it!!

  3. Greg

    Red Rocks is so pretty! Hiking that area will leave you breathless for multitude of reasons lol

    1. Katie @ ZenLifeandTravel

      haha, yes it will!

  4. Bob R

    In my mind, Red Rocks will always be associated with U2’s first (and best) live album. 🙂 Nice selection.

    1. Katie @ ZenLifeandTravel

      I had forgotten that U2 did an album there!

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