DIRECTIONS: From I-25 take the Route 34 exit and head west towards Rocky Mountain National Park. Drive through the town of Loveland and on the west side of town, turn left (south) on Rossum Drive. Cross over the Big Thompson River and you will soon see the trailhead for the Oxbow Natural Area. The trailhead for the Hidden Hogback Trail is just a hundred yards or so south on Rossum Road, just before the residential neighborhood starts.
The hike up to Mariana Butte, nestled in a suburban section of Loveland, CO, is a great little hike. You can get to the top of Mariana Butte very easily by accessing the TH near the peak, but adding the Hidden Hogback Trail makes it a bit longer and a more satisfying hike. From the top (and some parts of the trail) you are rewarded with great views of the Loveland area and the Front Range Mountains, particularly Longs Peak and Mt. Meeker rising to the west.
The trail starts just south of the trailhead for the Oxbow Natural Area. There is a pull off with enough room for a few cars near the trailhead. The trail starts out by following the Big Thompson river along a cliff face before turning to the south. The trail follows a hogback ridge that cuts through the Mariana Butte Golf Course (look out for wayward golf balls!). The trail has lots of ups and downs before reaching the saddle with Mariana Butte. This spot has fantastic views of Longs Peak, the Indian Peaks, and the Mummy Range mountains.
Drop down to the saddle and rise again to the "Trail to the top" (as the sign reads). The trail up to the top is the steepest part of the hike, though still an easy climb. The rocky summit block provides great views of the surrounding area.
On your way down you can either return the same way, or continue the loop around Mariana Butte. To complete the route follow the trail to the south and skirt the residential area before climbing back up to the saddle. At the saddle, follow the Hidden Hogback Trail back through the golf course and to the trailhead.
This is a great local neighborhood hike, not too short, not too long. The views are well worth the visit and the hike is great for kids and families.
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
Mariana Butte via Hidden Hogback Trail
Mariana Butte Natural Area
Date Hiked: April 11, 2020
Distance: 2 mi (RT)
Elevation Gain: 400 ft
Elevation Min/Max: 5,025 to 5,250 ft
Trailhead Lat/Long: 40.40290, -105.14072
Managing Agency: City of Loveland Open Lands & Trails