Hike Mount Sanitas & Settlers Park

Details

Distance

3.1 miles

Route Type

Loop

Added by Brock DeHaven

Amazing views of Boulder, the continental divide, and the eastern plains. 3.1 mile loop hike to Mt. Sanitas. Perfect scenery for sunrise and sunset hikes. Endless bouldering opportunities at Settlers Park. Easy parking, easy to follow trails.

First off, these are two different hikes but both stem from the same parking lot and Settlers Park is a mere 5 minutes away from where you park so why not kill two birds with one stone?

One of the more popular hikes in Boulder, Mount Sanitas is a 3 mile hike that quickly scales nearly 1,350 feet. From the parking lot off of Mapleton Road, cross the bridge and stay to the left at both of the forks up the Mt Sanitas West Ridge Trail. The trail climbs quickly for 0.85 miles before evening out on a ridge with views to the Continental Divide and Chautauqua Park. It will then bend north, taking you to the summit on a thin, but manageable path with panoramic views. After reaching the summit you will wind down the mountain through steep boulder fields for a little more than a half a mile before reaching the valley floor. The Sanitas Valley Trail will take you down all the way to the parking lot completing the Mount Sanitas Loop.

Once back in the parking lot, head south on Red Rocks trail for a quick, steep, 0.5 miles before coming to the amazing Settlers Park rock formations. Once you are done climbing or admiring the park, head back down Red Rocks trail back to the parking lot.

Read More

Known for

Fitness
Rock Climbing
Photography
Running
Hiking
Dog Friendly
Easy Parking
Forest
Picnic Area
Scenic
Wildlife

Nearby

Reviews

Leave a Review

Underwhelming but nice to stroll around

I hiked the loop and visited Settler’s Rock before heading back to my car. I didn’t see anything too spectacular about this hike though I did see a lot of people on the trail when I started mid afternoon. Nothing too strenuous but some parts still had snow on steeper areas, so I would recommend bringing micro spikes depending on what time of year you go.

Close intermediate hike

We took our Border Collie and Corgi. It is dog friendly but if your pup isn’t used to hiking I would be sure to have a backpack for them. The Corgi went in the pack about a quarter of the way up. The border collie is super fit and still was tired on the way down. It’s a nice hike, but climbs quickly.

Storm

I come to visit my friend every year in Colorado, we try to do new hikes every time. We chose this trail on what we thought was a sunny day but a storm popped up on us which was a scary feat. We made it all the way to the top just to get bombarded with lighting we were so scared we practically ran back down. I would still come back and do it again. Amazing view over Boulder.

A Classic Boulder Hike

Mt. Sanitas is always a good choice if you are looking for a nice hike on an afternoon or morning in Boulder. It can get crowded, so get an early start if you can!

Sanitas time trials

This one is great if you like to race up the mountain, because that is what every else is doing. Relaxing: not really. Great for training: yes. SO what is everyone's best Sanitas loop time? 37:52 here for the whole loop. How fast can someone who trains for ultras do this??

Great Hike!

This is my go-to hike for when I have friends in town, not extremely aggressive, and a good length. Also nice if you want to do an easy solo-hike! It does get busy in the summer so go on the earlier side.

This is an awesome hike if you're looking to stick close to Boulder. It gets busy in the summer, but probably not as busy an Chautauqua, plus you still get great views of downtown Boulder as well as the Flatirons to the south. After the hike, be sure to stop at the new Avery taproom for food and beer!

Mt. Sanitas Loop

Great hike with fantastic views! Fairly easy hike - took two kids 8 and 11. Both made the full loop, although we did have to offer a small bribe to the 8 year old to get her to the summit. once there, it was all downhill! Easy to get too as it's in Boulder. Can get a little crowded, even on weekdays.

652 total saves

4.4/5

Leave No Trace

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures and follow local regulations. Please explore responsibly!

We want to acknowledge and thank the past, present, and future generations of all Native Nations and Indigenous Peoples whose ancestral lands we travel, explore, and play on.

Nearby Adventures

Hike Boulder's Skyline Traverse

5.0
16.4 mi / 6300 ft gain

Hike the Sunshine Lion's Lair Loop

5.0
5.3 mi / 1300 ft gain

Hike the Red Rocks Loop Trail

3.7
1 mi

Hike the Saddle Rock Trail

5.0
2.6 mi / 1500 ft gain
More Nearby Adventures