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Carpenter Peak Trail

Intermediate
 4.3 (43)

Carpenter Peak is the crown jewel of Roxborough State Park.


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Map Key

3.1

Miles

5.0

KM

Point to Point

7,106' 2,166 m

High

6,227' 1,898 m

Low

1,037' 316 m

Up

392' 120 m

Down

9%

Avg Grade (5°)

28%

Max Grade (16°)

Dogs No Dogs

Features Birding · Fall Colors · Views · Wildflowers · Wildlife

To preserve Roxborough's natural state, no rock climbing, camping, mountain bikes, pets, or horses are permitted in Roxborough State Park.

Need to Know

There is a daily fee of $8 to enter the park. All 5 hikes I've done on this trail it has rained and/or hailed -- bring a rain jacket!

Description

This trail climbs to the 7,166 foot Carpenter Peak which is the high point in Roxborough State Park. Be sure to take the Carpenter Peak Spur to check out the views from the summit of Carpenter Peak.

The trail immediately starts to climb up rail tie steps with sometimes intense sun exposure. Bring a hat! At about 1 mile, the path will start to switch-back up the first ridge toward the first fantastic views back down the park. After a couple more ridge switch-backs, you have views to Denver and the plains beyond.

At two miles, you'll come over and then down the last ridge to the end of a small valley. During this section, you can see the rocky summit of Carpenter Peak to the northwest. After crossing the small gulch to the other side of the valley, you'll continue up the east side of Carpenter in a northerly direction until you reach the summit ridge and another trail junction. Stay right to continue on the Carpenter Peak Spur to the summit.

There are large rocks and ledges to the right of the peak that afford amazing views down into the park and up the Hogback all the way to Long's Peak. The true summit is reached by a short but fun scramble from these rocks or, for the less adventurous, a few small steps up from the left, or west, side of the summit. The summit has 360-degree views including up Waterton Canyon.

The surrounding red rock formations are truly impressive dramatic hogbacks, spires, and monoliths of sandstone. Additionally, the park is impressive in the spring for wildflowers, and the fall for autumn colors. While this trail is steep in sections, the climb up to Carpenter Peak is well worth the effort.

The Carpenter Trail connects to Powerline Trail, Elk Valley Trail, and County Road 5 for those looking to make a loop or add some mileage to their hike.

Flora & Fauna

For spring wildflowers or for fall colors, this hike amongst impressive red rock formations is worth doing twice in a year. Mule deer and various song birds are common. Black bear and mountain lion have been spotted.

Contacts

Shared By:

Derek Griffiths

Trail Ratings

  4.3 from 43 votes

#72

Overall
  4.3 from 43 votes
5 Star
35%
4 Star
58%
3 Star
5%
2 Star
2%
1 Star
0%
Trail Rankings

#19

in Colorado

#72

Overall
62 Views Last Month
6,066 Since Oct 30, 2015
Intermediate

2%
2%
78%
0%
17%
0%

Photos

Bear on Carpenter's Peak Trail.
Jun 29, 2019 near Roxboro…, CO
View east while heading up Carpenter Peak Trail.
Oct 23, 2016 near Roxboro…, CO
Well maintained trail
Sep 12, 2018 near Roxboro…, CO
Heading up Carpenter Peak trail
Jan 4, 2020 near Roxboro…, CO
The start of the Carpenter Peak Trail.
Oct 30, 2015 near Roxboro…, CO

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Weather


Current Trail Conditions

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All Clear 11 days ago See History
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Check-Ins

Aug 29, 2021
Matteo Vera
Long pants recommended for folks with sensitive skin due to narrow paths.
May 2, 2021
Taylor West
Girls hike with Kelly, Ellen, and Katie
Feb 27, 2021
Jess Stampe
Nov 1, 2020
Jeff S
Perfect fall day. — 2h 15m
Jun 18, 2020
Justin Hahn
6.9mi — 1h 55m
Mar 18, 2020
Erin Andersen
Mileage includes (partial) Willow Creek trail. Icy in some spots; otherwise the trail is clear. 7.8mi — 3h 09m
Feb 1, 2020
Carolyn C
With forest
Dec 11, 2019
Erin Andersen
Willow Creek to Carpenter Peak (partial); microspikes needed 4mi — 2h 20m