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Denver trip with my family of 4 and 14 year old kids need to tips and suggestions for 3 days trip

Hi All,

I am planning to travel just my family of 4 ( two boys 4 and 14 years old). Need suggestions what all i can hike with kids during oct 8,9,and 10 dates (year 2021).

1. rocky mountains - tips to enjoy outside mountains and hikes (wild animals) etc.

2. peak to peak drive ? ideas 

3. anything else (colorado or denver or rockymountains area).

4. weather precaution for kids and wife. etc.




6 Replies

@Sridhar100 - I immediately think of Pikes Peak, just to the south.  Get to the 14,000 summit either by a cog railroad or a drivable toll road.  Also trails if your family is up to the exercise.  Lots to see in the area, but loaded with tourist traps.

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Thank you!


Denver has an especially nice network of bike/pedestrian trails that follow a rough triangle along Cherry Creek, Platte River and Highline Canal.  I once did a multi-day bike trip in Denver camping in the State parks since there are a number of very nice Colorado State Parks in and around Denver.

Thank you!!!


Rocky Mountain National Park is stunning.  Take US36 to Estes Park (or Peak-to-Peak Hwy) and do Trail Ridge Road all the way and go back to Denver via US 34 - US 40 - I-70.  Stunning vistas, and if you're lucky there will still be some aspen colors.  It's peaking where I live but could be a little later in some places.

Pikes Peak is also very good and an iconic mountain.  Brand new cog railroad and summit house. Katherine Lee Bates wrote the lyrics to "America the Beautiful" based on her trip to the summit.

You could also drive to the top of Mt. Evans, another 14er.

Thousands of hiking trails are available.  Mt. Falcon Park, Golden Gate Canyon State Park, Staunton State Park, Castlewood Canyon State Park, Lookout Mountain, Lost Creek Wilderness, Herman Gulch Trail (a fav of mine) are all within an hour or so from Denver.  If you do any of the recommended drives there are trails along the way.

Weather will most likely be cool, but the snow that is falling today in many places should be melted out by then.  

Don't worry too much about wild animals.  If you see them, stay clear.  DON'T try to get a selfie!  But do be prepared to hike with the 10 Essentials.  You are your best source of help.

And have plenty of snacks for the young ones!!  Gummy bears are great motivators!

Superusers do not speak on behalf of REI and may have received
one or more gifts or other benefits from the co-op.

If you're up for all the driving, I recommend 1 day in Rocky Mountain NP (reservations still required until mid October, some parts of the park are closed already for snow but try to get the Bear Lake Corridor pass and you'll still be able to see lots- if you're traveling soon then log on to to make a reservation 5pm the day before). 

2nd day "mountain town/I-70" - drive either to Georgetown and do the train and/or drive the guanella pass or if your family is into gold mining Idaho Springs. Can hit up Red Rocks and Dino Ridge that day too.

Day 3: CO springs. Pikes Peak, a 14er you can drive + Garden of the Gods will be a full day. 

Have fun! The weather can be unpredictable this time of year and remember high elevations will already be near freezing temps (like pikes peak).

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