Distance: 3.2 miles roundtrip. Elevation gain: 1,200 ft. Archway formed by rocks towering over 30 feet high. Views of Eastern Plains and Boulder's famous Flatirons. Small creek waterfalls and wildflowers.

Royal Arch Trail climbs up Boulder's famous Chautauqua Park to an archway formed by sandstone rocks that tower over thirty feet high.

Start at the Chautauqua Trail Station by the Ranger Station, and continue up Bluebell Road for 0.7 miles. You will then arrive at a more forested area, where you will head south, following the signs for the Royal Arch Trail for 0.2 miles.

The trail will steepen and the grade will steadily increase towards the upper-gulch up to Sentinel Pass, the most difficult section, which lasts 0.45 miles. Once you reach the top of the pass, you will keep left down 100' and continue for 0.22 miles along a twisting climb over Tangen Spring, which will bring you to the base of the Arch.

From there, climb up the Royal Arch to a set of outcrops with panoramic views of the Eastern Plains, foothills, Boulder and Denver.

Pack List

  • Backpack
  • Water
  • Snacks
  • Camera
  • Crampons (seasonal)
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Activities Chillin, Photography, Hiking, Fitness
Skill Level Intermediate
Season Year Round
Features
Bathrooms
Dog Friendly
Family Friendly
Picnic Area
Scenic
Wildflowers
Wildlife

Reviews

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Overall rating: 

Beautiful Views

It was cool to see the archway formed by rocks towering over 30 feet high. Views of Eastern Plains and Boulder's famous Flatirons were great. The trail is slippery in the winter when there's ice.

"Outdoor Stairmaster"

Chautauqua Park is beautiful, but Royal Arch is outstanding. The elevation gain is killer on your calves, but it is so worth it in the end. Pack a lunch and eat it sitting in the arch overlooking Boulder!

almost 2 years ago

Great!

This is an outstanding hike if you want to get engaged!


Please respect the places you find on The Outbound Collective.

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures. Be aware of local regulations and don't damage these amazing places for the sake of a photograph. Learn More

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