Boulder is known for its proximity to the great outdoors. Hiking, rock-climbing, mountain biking, and skiing are just a few of the outdoor activities that can be done within the Boulder city limits. As such, this active town takes pride in maintaining its pristine and intricate hiking trails. Chautauqua Park boasts a variety of trails that range from easy to strenuous and nearby Rocky Mountain National Park is a hikers heaven. Mt. Sanitas and Bear Peak sit toward the top of our list because of their challenging terrain and spectacular views. But before tackling these hikes, let's talk trails: the class ratings, what you need to bring, and how physically fit you need to be.
Class 1: Easy-Moderate. These trails are typically flat with little elevation gain. You will need to be in descent physical condition. If you can climb a flight of stairs without getting winded, you should be just fine.
Class 2: Moderate. Class 2 trails usually rise steadily and gradually. There will be considerable elevation gain over time. People who hike regularly and are acclimated to altitude will find these trails fairly simple where others may find them to be a challenge.
Class 3: These trails are a challenge even for those who are accustomed altitude. Scrambling (using your hands for stability) may be required.
No matter how easy the hike, taking water, rain gear, layers, and sturdy hiking boots is essential. Remember when hiking in altitude that there are sudden weather changes and always tell someone where you are going and when you'll return.
Hike safe, and hike on!