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The Red Rocks

  4.0 ( 20 ) Favorite


3.7 mile 6.0 kilometer loop


Ascent: 522' 159 m
Descent: -519' -158 m
High: 6,651' 2,027 m
Low: 6,206' 1,892 m


Avg Grade: 5% (3°)
Max Grade: 16% (9°)


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A simple hike with stunning views.

Jason Doedderlein

Features Views · Wildlife


A quick hike, offering a sense of isolation and beautiful views of the western landscape, Garden of the Gods, and the red rock that gives Red Rock Canyon its name.

Starts with a mild, yet steady, 1.5 mile climb followed by a fun descent. The hike then enters Red Rock Canyon before climbing back up to grasslands and returning to the trailhead.


From the parking area, climb the dirt trail up to the dirt road and follow uphill to the right. The trail will be about .25 miles in on the left. This provides the warm up for the hike.

The hike starts on the Hogback trail, a well-worn singletrack between two ridges (Hogbacks), which gives a sense of isolation from the city that is tucked away on the other side. The view is spectacular with the mountains in the distance, walls of rock on either side and grasses, shrubs, and trees dotting the valley that the trail takes you through.

The trail climbs steadily, at a 6% grade, for about 1.5 miles before a switchback redirects you to the north (where the trail becomes the "Lion Trail") towards a notch in the western hogback. At this notch, there is a trail heading south that leads to trails in Section 16, the Palmer Loop and the Intemann trail. This hike will drop down to the right where Garden of the Gods stands in the distance.

The trail drops into a valley and connects with the Red Rock Rim Trail, where the hike heads left and then curves to the right into the Red Rocks.

The Red Rocks part and the Rim Trail ends at the appropriately named Red Rock canyon trail. Continue through the Red Rock past the lake and the old house (soon to be visitor's center) through the gate. There, a trail rises steeply to the right and deposits you back on the Red Rock Rim trail which winds around and up before dropping you back to the original Hogback Trail Trailhead.

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Family Friendly, ADA Accessible, Need to Know, Flora & Fauna, History & Background


Land Manager: City of Colorado Springs

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Aug 24, 2019
Christian Cardona
Jun 12, 2019
Patrick Murray
Sep 8, 2018
Peter Kuo
Aug 24, 2018
Chris Turnbaugh
Great loop with classic views. Garden of the Gods has some better views, but this trial is great and way less busy. 3.7mi
Aug 20, 2018
Michael Perry
Aug 19, 2018
Nat Wolfe
Jun 17, 2018
Eliane Zalewski
4mi — 2h 00m
May 6, 2018
Brian Huber

Trail Ratings

  4.0 from 20 votes


  4.0 from 20 votes
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in Colorado


137 Views Last Month
2,926 Since Mar 20, 2015



Open paths & fall colors
Mar 7, 2019 near Colorad…, CO
Looking down the Codell Trail ridge.
Sep 28, 2018 near Manitou…, CO
Sunset heading back north on the Hogback Valley Trail
Sep 28, 2018 near Colorad…, CO
View of Garden of the Gods in the heat of a Colorado summer from Red Rock Canyon OS.
Mar 23, 2015 near Colorad…, CO
Sunrise over Red Rock Canyon.
Mar 25, 2019 near Manitou…, CO
Dusk panorama of Colorado Springs to the NE. L-R you can see Pulpit Rock, Palmer Park, Bear Creek and Cheyenne Mountain.
Mar 25, 2019 near Colorad…, CO


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