It's no secret that Colorado is filled with gorgeous scenery, and plentiful places to hike. So I've put together a list of my top 5 favorite places to hike in Southern Colorado (ish) so you can get out and enjoy the trails too! (Note: They're not in any particular order)
Unfortunately I don't have any cool pictures of the pancake-looking rocks at the end of the trail, but you can check out some photos by clicking the link in the title. Pancake Rocks/Horsethief Falls trail is almost 7 miles roundtrip, and it's just south of Midland, Colorado. It's an out-and-back trail, rated moderate, and it's dog friendly!
That's my boyfriend, Tony, pictured above at the top of Pulpit Rock. If you've driven through Colorado Springs on I-25, chances are you've noticed this massive rock formation off in the distance on the East side of the interstate. It's a pretty quick hike at just 2.7 miles, and even shorter if you just hike straight to the top.
This trail is just a short walk from my house in Manitou Springs, and it's one of my favorites. It's also a relatively quick hike at 2.5 miles out-and-back, with an elevation gain of 944 feet. At the top you get great views of Manitou, Garden of the Gods, Pikes Peak and the city. I love to end this one by walking into Manitou and grabbing a beer and bite to eat!
Iron Mountain is also located in Manitou Springs, and is directly next to the above mentioned Red Mountain. This one is similar in length at 2.7 miles out-and-back with 600 feet of elevation gain. (Can you tell I like short trails? lol) You'll mainly get the same views as mentioned above, this trail just being slightly easier than Red Mountain, as there isn't as much elevation gain. A lot of people actually do Red and Iron Mountain right after another since their trailheads are so close to each other!
It's hard to pick just one trail in Red Rocks Canyon Open Space, so I linked a list of all the best ones above. You can find RRCOS right off of Highway 24, right before you get into Manitou Springs. It doesn't look like much from the road, but trust me, once you walk further in you'll start to see it in all of it's glory. My favorite part of the area is that there are so many trails for all hiking abilities and it's so close to the city. (It's a great spot for mountain biking, too!) If you're looking for a day hike that's not too far away, I encourage you to check this place out.