William F. Hayden Park on Green Mountain has a challenging network of multi-use trails and because it is so close to town, makes for a great weekday escape.

Green Mountain Trail is a 6.5-mile loop and has a challenging ascent to the park's highest point. Because the mountain is one of the first to rise out of the plains, you get unique views of where the mountains meet the prairie and fascinating geology. The summit, at 6,857' offers stunning views of Denver and the plains to the east and impressive mountain peaks to the west. Because it is only about 20 minutes from Denver, it could be considered an urban mountain. Once home to buffalo, the park now has a diverse wildlife population including coyotes, hawks, rattlesnakes, bluebirds, rabbits, mule deer, and occasionally a mountain lion. The north side of Hayden Park was used as an artillery target range for the Colorado National Guard's Camp George West during the first half of the 20th century. Stay on marked trails as old military munitions and debris can still be found in the park. Green Mountain trail is rated moderately strenuous. Because of the lack of trees, this is a sunny hike, which is great in winter. Don't forget your sunscreen!

Photos: Chris Tomer

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RT Distance 6.5 Miles
Elevation Gain 1180 Feet
Activities Hiking
Skill Level Intermediate
Season Year Round
Trail Type Loop
Features
Easy Parking
Scenic
Wildlife

Reviews

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Overall rating: 

Muddy but Great Views of Denver

Due to recent snowmelt the trails were a muddy mess...we found ourselves sinking inches into the muck and my dog was a mess at the end. Regardless, the views of Denver on the horizon were unbeatable.

Review

Summit Loop was pretty muddy/snowy today. The Green Mountain Trail was much drier. All trails have great views of the mountains and city but I prefer my trails with some trees (none at all).

Awesome Open Space

I decided to sneak out of the office for an afternoon hike and escaped away to this trail. It was a great experience. The trails are well maintained and vary in difficulty and grade, with different options available along the way. I completed a 3-mile loop with a pretty steep grade on the way up. You share the trails with those on bikes, so keep your eyes and ears open. It was pretty active when I visited, but parking was available. The only downside concerns pet owners. There were several dog waste bags carelessly left along the trails. Although I appreciate pet owners being responsible by picking up after their furry friends, I would also hope they'd properly dispose of the bags. All in all, definitely a must do if you're in the Lakewood area.


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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