Hike the Rim Rock / Creek Bottom Trail Loop

West Entrance, Castlewood Canyon State Park - Search Nearby - Added by Haley Baker

A stunning trail that showcases the best that Castlewood Canyon has to offer.

The West Side of Castlewood Canyon is the more "rugged" side of the park, it has a dirt road, gravel parking lots, and only vault toilets. Luckily, this also means this is a less popular side of the park, making for less crowded trails and easier parking! 

Park at the first trailhead, for the Homestead Trail. You follow the Homestead Trail (J) until you meet up with the Rim Rock Trail (M) and Creek Bottom Trail (G) trail junction. This is a loop, so you can choose whatever direction you want, but I prefer to start with Rim Rock Trail so that I'm in the shade on the way back. 

You'll start out by crossing a small footbridge and then begin working your way up to the rim of the canyon. It gets a little steep at times, but for the most part it's gradual switchbacks taking you upwards. Once you reach the top, take a moment and take in the incredible views. Start working your way south along the rim, following the cairns when the trail becomes hard to follow. 

After another mile, you'll reach the Dam Trail (H). Follow the Dam Trail until you reach the Creek Bottom Trail (G). You have the choice to go uphill and check out the Historic Dam, and since that path connects back to the Creek Bottom Trail, it's definitely worth your time. This dam was built in 1890 and collapsed in 1933. The collapse released over a billion gallons of water that travelled over 40 miles of surrounding wilderness before eventually flooding Denver. 

Follow the Creek Bottom Trail for another 1.7 miles until you meet back up with the Homestead Trail. Pay attention to your right side, you'll pass a waterfall and some pretty stunning views along your way. 

The Rim Rock Trail doesn't have any shade, so make sure you take sunscreen.

Dogs are allowed as long as they are on a leash! 

Distance

4.54 Miles RT

Type

Loop

Activities

Running, Hiking

Bathrooms
Dog Friendly
Easy Parking
Family Friendly
Forest
Scenic
Waterfall
Wildflowers

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

Reviews

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Overall rating: 

Amazing views

Did this trail a few weeks ago, would definitely recommend if you want to see some sick views from the top the canyon and check out the dam ruins. Started at creek bottom all the way around to rim rock was about 8 miles or so.

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