Directions: Directions: From Castle Rock, head east on Founders Parkway (86). At the intersection with 5th Street, turn left (east) following 86. Take 86 to Franktown and turn right (west) on 83. Follow signs to the park. After you pass the entrance station turn right into the overlook parking area and start out on the paved overlook trail.
The Canyon View nature trail is an easy, paved, trail that starts from the parking lot adjacent to the Visitor Center and leads to a breathtaking canyon view point and along the ridge with various viewpoints along the way. The nature trail gains almost no elevation making it possibly the easiest trail in the park with great views as well.
If you want to add some distance and dip down into the canyon, you can connect to the Inner Canyon trail and follow the steps down to the canyon floor. Once at the bottom of the canyon, cross the creek and follow the canyon floor through oak brush, amazing in the fall…
After a little over a mile, the canyon will open up. At the trail junction, cross the creek again and pick up the Lake Gulch Trail. Over .8 miles, the Lake Gulch Trail climbs back up to the rim of the canyon, with great views of Pike’s Peak, and connects to the paved trail that leads back to the parking area.
It cannot be stressed enough that Castlewood Canyon is spectacular in early-mid October when the oak trees are glowing yellow, orange, and red. This trail is an easy way to experience this incredible environment.
HIKES BY REGION
NATIONAL PARK HIKES
- BENT'S OLD FORT NATIONAL HISTORIC SITE
- BLACK CANYON OF THE GUNNISON NATIONAL PARK
- COLORADO NATIONAL MONUMENT
- CURECANTI NATIONAL RECREATION AREA
- DINOSAUR NATIONAL MONUMENT
- FLORISSANT FOSSIL BEDS NATIONAL MONUMENT
- MESA VERDE NATIONAL PARK
- ROCKY MOUNTAIN NATIONAL PARK
- GREAT SAND DUNES NATIONAL PARK
- HOVENWEEP NATIONAL MONUMENT
- SAND CREEK MASSACRE NATIONAL HISTORIC SITE
- YUCCA HOUSE NATIONAL MONUMENT
- HIKES BY CATEGORY
- $UPPORT GHC
- INTERACTIVE MAP
Canyon View/Inner Canyon Loop
Castlewood Canyon State Park
Date Hiked: October 11, 2014
Distance: 3.1 mi (RT)
Elevation Gain: 440 ft
Elevation Min/Max: 6,397 to 6,622 ft
Trailhead Lat/Long: 39º 19' 48" N; 104º 44' 15" W
Managing Agency: CO Div. of Parks & Wildlife