As any long-time Denverite will tell you, one of the best parts about living in the Mile High City (one of our best places to travel in 2016) is its proximity to the mountains. Just a short drive from the city you’ll find an array of well-maintained hiking trails. Whether you’re looking for an easy, shady hike in an evergreen forest, or a leg-burning climb that will leave you breathless, the nearby hills have something for everyone. We’ve narrowed down seven of our favorites that will help you get outside and get moving.
1. Alderfer Three Sisters Park
A mere 40 minutes from Denver and just past the town of Evergreen, the trails at Three Sisters will make you feel like you are hours away from the city. A myriad of options exist at the 770-acre park, including more than 15 miles of trails. We love the Evergreen Mountain loop for a good climb, but other loops (like the Hidden Fawn Trail) and lots of big, shady trees make this higher-altitude area good for beginners, people looking to beat the heat, and even trail runners.
2. Bear Peak
There are multiple ways to reach Boulder’s most iconic mountain top, Bear Peak, but we prefer the less-traveled route from Shanahan Ridge. This gorgeous trail is 6.8 miles of grueling hiking not for the faint of heart. But the out-and-back challenge is worth it and once you reach the top, the views will make you forget the 2,490 feet of climbing.