Hike to Horsetooth Rock

Colorado Horsetooth Mountain Open Space

Added by Ryan Mckinney

Horsetooth Rock offers amazing views, especially at sunrise! The hike is only 4 miles from Fort Collins.

The Horsetooth Mountain Park Open Space is located just 4 miles from Fort Collins. The 2,886 acre park offers 29 miles of hiking, biking, and horse back riding trails.

Having taken both the multi use trail and the hiking only trail, I recommend the hiking only. This trail offers you the views and instead of being a fire road, it is a single track trail. The trail is very well marked with signs at each turn. Trail maps are located at the trailhead.

Parking is $6.00 per day and annual passes are available. This is a popular trail so it's best to arrive before 10 am. Dogs are welcome here but must remain on a lease. I noticed several dog stations as well. There are 3 designated backcountry campsites.

During the winter months it is a good idea to have some sort of traction. I brought my Kahtoola MICROspikes just in case and I am glad that I did! The only water is located at the trailhead so make sure you bring enough water for the entire hike.

The last photo is of an Aberts Squirrel. I rarely run into them and I have yet to take a decent photo of one. The first time I saw one, I had no clue what was in front of me. Including their tail the Aberts Squirrel can grow up to 22 inches long! I went home and googled "demon squirrel" and its photos popped up! They are very unique and fun to watch.

Looking for another quick hike, head over to Horsetooth Falls.

Pack List

  • 10 Essentials
  • Kahtoola MICROspikes
  • Water
  • Windproof Jacket
  • Camera(Canon 5d MKii)
  • Tripod
  • Credit/Debit Card for parking ($6.00)
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Chillin, Fitness, Hiking, Photography, Running

Skill Level:



Year Round

Trail Type:



5 Miles

Elev. Gain:

1440 Feet



Dog Friendly
Easy Parking
Family Friendly

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How to Get There

27 days ago

Go Early If Its A Weekend

Nice hike to take the dog on but I'm glad I got there early, by 930am (Saturday) the place was relatively packed with kids , not that there's anything wrong. With that...

27 days ago

about 2 months ago

Always a fun local hike

Pretty easy hike, awesome views of town

about 2 months ago

10 months ago

Great views of the reservoir and nice elevation gain for running.

10 months ago

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