“The best out-and-back hike high above the valley floor to see stunning views of Aspen and the surrounding Elk Mountains.
— Seamus Crowley
Fall Colors · Views
A beautiful switchbacking hike up the face of Red Mountain, providing stellar views of the valley below and the surrounding peaks the entire way up.
No camping, no campfires.
Need to Know
Little to no shade is available on the trail, so be prepared for sun and heat. Follow all trail signs to avoid ending up on bandit trails or private property.
The Sunnyside trailhead is directly off of McLain Flats Road, with a 10± vehicle parking lot on the opposite side of the road.
Starting with a relatively low grade, the trail grows steeper soon after beginning and is then a long, steady zig-zag climb to the finish, with the exception of a flat traverse of about a quarter mile. Obvious directional signage is present along the entire trail. The beginning of the trail has slight Aspen tree coverage, transitioning into low brush. Most people hike only as far as the small radio tower, which is a natural stopping point in a quiet Aspen grove, before returning to the trailhead.
From the trail, there are sweeping views from Independence Pass to all four of the Aspen/Snowmass ski mountains and the high peaks in between. Be sure to bring your camera along so that you can make all of your friends jealous.