• Activities:

    Photography, Hiking

  • Skill Level:

    Intermediate

  • Season:

    Year Round

  • Trail Type:

    Out-and-Back

  • RT Distance:

    2.8 Miles

  • Elevation Gain:

    951 Feet

Bathrooms
Easy Parking
Forest
Picnic Area
Scenic
Wildflowers

Beautiful hike that leads to the last remaining fire lookout on the front range that is still in service. On a clear day you can easily spot Pikes Peak and Mount Evans, and enjoy views as far as 100 miles away!

This is one of my favorite hikes near Denver and the lookout itself is over 100 years old! On the road to the trailhead there are many spots for camping and other activities.

From Sedalia, CO head down Highway 67 for about 10 miles. Turn south onto Rampart Range Rd and continue for about 9.5 miles. You will then be going left towards Devils Head Campground. Rampart Range Road is a gravel road that sometimes requires slow speeds due to washboard conditions.

Once you get to the parking area make sure you fill out a parking permit. The trail starts at the concrete stairs. You will initially be hiking through some very tall aspens and there are some pretty interesting rock formations on the way up as well. The trail itself is very well marked with plenty of benches along the way to stop for a break. There's even a sign to let you know the that you are at the halfway mark!

You will get to a break in the trees towards the end of the trail that opens to a meadow. Here you will see the ranger's cabin, a picnic area, the fire lookout, and the infamous 143 step staircase to get to the lookout. I suggest bringing a picnic and resting in the meadow before taking on the 143 steps.

Once you've tackled the stairs you will be greeted by the friendliest ranger there is, Bill (he's there May-September). He was great and is happy to answer any and all questions. Before you head out to the balcony be sure to explore the building itself which offers some history, old maps, pictures, and tips on keeping the trails beautiful. Now get out on the balcony and enjoy the 360 degree panorama view!

TIPS:
  • In the summer get there early as it is a very popular trail.
  • Be cautious of bad weather and lightning as this is the highest point in the area.

Pack List

  • $5 for Permit/Pen
  • Water
  • Camera
  • Snacks/ Picnic
  • Layers
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Reviews

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The hike itself is pretty simple. The trail is well marked and it has enough traffic you won't get lost. The view from the tower is absolutely beautiful! The steps up to the tower, not so beautiful if you're not a fan of heights, but I promise it's worth it!

8 months ago
8 months ago

Great 360 degree views of Pike National Forest. There were a lot of people on this trail for being so remote but an awesome day hike. Definitely spend some time in the tower with Billy who's been tending to the tower for 33 years, he's a legend.

9 months ago
9 months ago

This is a really great hike with incredible views of Pikes peak. If you're in the area be sure to check it out!

about 1 year ago
about 1 year ago

We hiked this and arrived back home in Highlands Ranch just about exactly four hours after we left. It was my second time and just as good as I remembered. The views are nice all the way up and there are plenty of rest stops to have a snack or catch your breath. The lookout itself is wonderful to get some views and use to add even more interest in the foreground of your photos. I'd suggest going early or late to avoid crowds, especially on the weekend. We went on a weekday morning and even then we saw around 20 other hikers over the course of our 2 hours on the trail.

over 1 year ago
over 1 year ago

I love Devil's Head, as the Rampart Range can still feel very remote. It sticks out like a sore thumb between between the views of Pike's Peak and Mt. Evans from the buttes of Castle Rock. Like the review said, the road up can be a bit rough but no 4X4 is necessarily needed. Lots of hikers of all ages/levels. It is easy to get off of the beaten path and explore some of the large boulders that surround the Fire Tower. Great review!

over 1 year ago
over 1 year ago

Alyssa Aaron

Hiking, snowshoeing, camping. You can usually find me in the mountains with my fellow adventurists; my husband, Levi, and our Border-collie mix, Ziggy. I love CO. There's always a new sport to try, a new spot to see, or a new mountain to conquer!

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