Hike the Palmer Lake Reservoir Trail

Rate this Adventure 4.1 miles 853 ft gain  - Out-and-Back Trail

Added by Haley Baker

Located in a small town just outside of Colorado Springs, Palmer Lake Reservoir is a perfect place to hike or go for a trail run.

This hike starts with a steep uphill, and if that doesn't take your breath away, the views of the lakes definitely will. After the uphill slog, you'll immediately reach the lower reservoir. On still mornings, it offers perfect reflections of its surroundings.  The trail continues along its northern shore and gently works its way to Palmer Lake. 

You'll go through a meadow that, in the summer, is full of wildflowers. You'll then go around a gate to continue along the lake's edge. The trail gets a little steep here, and can get muddy if it has rained recently - just take it slow and you'll be fine.

When you reach a hole in a pile of rocks, you've pretty much reached the end of the trail (it does not go all the way around, you'll have to backtrack the way you came in). Find a good spot to sit down and throw a line in! 

The trail is popular, but as long as you're there before 9:30 am, you'll be fine getting a parking spot and won't have to worry too much about crowds. It's also great for after-work runs!

Read More


Dog Friendly
Easy Parking
Family Friendly


Have you done this adventure? Be the first to leave a review!

Stay Nearby

Woodland Park, Colorado

Manitou Lake Pavilion

Overview Manitou Lake Picnic Area, is located 7 miles north of Woodland Park, Colorado,. The Manitou Lake Pavilion is located inside the picnic area and is a wonderful group day use picnic area for...

Woodland Park, Colorado

Pike Community

Overview Pike Community is a group campground located about 6 miles north of Woodland Park in central Colorado. It is a popular choice for of all ages, complete with a baseball field, playground, s...

Woodland Park, Colorado

South Meadows

Overview South Meadows Campground, located 5 miles north of Woodland Park, provides a scenic spot for campers to rest and enjoy the many recreational offerings of the area. The campground attracts ...

Woodland Park, Colorado

Painted Rocks

Overview Painted Rocks Campground is located a short distance from Manitou Lake Picnic Area and the Centennial Bike Trail in central Colorado. The rustic campground is named for the sandstone outcr...

Nearby Adventures

  • Hike Mt. Herman

    The Basics: Mt. Herman is the most prominent peak overlooking Monument, CO and is easily spotted from I-25. The area between Monument and the mountain hosts a large network of meandering trails that are great for trail running and mountain biking....

    6.3 miles 1900 ft gain

  • Hike Spruce Mountain Loop

    Spruce mountain is a 5.5 mile loop outside of Colorado Springs near Palmer lake. The hike is a pretty easy one, that has some great views of the Front Range including peak a boo views of Pikes Peak. Starting at the Trailhead, you can either take t...

    5.5 miles 500 ft gain

  • Hike Eagle's Peak (USAFA)

    This is a short trail that goes very high in elevation. In about 1.25 miles you can go about 2000ish feet in elevation change. You need to wait till 9am to start the hike as it sits on the US Airforce Academy. It is definitely worth it. Bring shoe...

    2.5 miles 1100 ft gain

  • Paddle Rampart Reservoir

    Rampart Reservoir is located off of Rampart Range Road and is boat accessible from Spring until Fall. It has a boat ramp for motorized as well as human powered boats. There are vault toilets nearby. It is a nice place to spend the day paddling at ...

  • Inspire Your Fall Aspen Trip!

    Autumn days in Aspen are filled with sunshine and nights with crisp cool air. Watch the mountains and valleys turn gold with the changing Aspen trees. Take in the scenery while enjoying scenic drives, hiking through forests, road biking, and exploring our IMBA Gold Level Ride Center recognized mountain bike trails. 

    Learn More