Directions: From I-25 in Castle Rock, head east on route 86, Founders Parkway. Follow Founders Parkway for about 4 miles, past the strip malls to the outskirts of town. Turn left (east) on Castle Oaks Drive and drive 2.8 miles. Turn right onto Pleasant View Drive and the trailhead is about 1 mile up the road.
The Rocky and Pleasant Pass Loop is both rocky and pleasant... The hike explores the northern half of Hidden Mesa and drops to the valley floor before regaining the mesa top. Along the way views of the Front Range mountains, foothills, and communities keep you entertained. The hike is relatively easy making this a good one for families looking to spend a few hours exploring the mesas of Douglas County.
From the main parking area off of Pleasant View Drive, take the Hidden Mesa Trail following the signs for the Mesa Rim Loop. The first part of the hike travels across the mostly flat mesa top to a series of junctions. You see a trail sign near a bench, but about 50 yards down-trail there will be another sign, continue along the Hidden Mesa Trail to the second sign. The second sign is the junction for the Pleasant Valley Trail. Here you can either turn left for the Pleasant Valley Trail or continue to the next Junction. This description continues and returns to this point later.
The next junction along the Hidden Mesa Trail is the Rocky Pass/Mesa Rim junction. Turn left for the Rocky Pass Trail. After a few minutes you'll arrive at Rocky Pass where the trail descends a rocky slope to the valley floor. From the pass you'll get some nice views of the surrounding mesas.
Once you reach the valley floor, look for the junction with the Pleasant Pass Trail. Turn left and start working your way back up to the top of the mesa. This is one of the more scenic portions of this hike with great views as you regain the mesa. Before long you'll reach Pleasant Pass and the mesa top. Continue along flat terrain until you return to the Pleasant Pass Trail junction. Here you turn right and follow the Hidden Mesa Trail back to the trailhead.
Hidden Mesa Open Space is a nice neighborhood open space with few crowds. This area tends to dry quickly and is therefore a good hiking option for winter or spring hikes without a ton of mud.
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
Rocky Pass & Pleasant Pass Loop
Hidden Mesa Open Space
Date Hiked: January 12, 2019
Distance: 2.8 mi (RT)
Elevation Gain: 334 ft
Elevation Min/Max: 6,240 to 6,484 ft
Trailhead Lat/Long: 39º 24' 20" N; 104º 48' 11" W
Managing Agency: Douglas County Open Space