This hike has some of my greatest memories attached to it because we were celebrating so much this day. To begin, our best friends Rebecca and Matt were on the way to having their beautiful baby girl Ellie and our other best friends Megan and Al had officially moved to Colorado and signed a lease that exact day, May 5th, 2017. It was one of the first times I fully realized that we could celebrate wonderful things going on in our lives and the lives of our friends or family by doing something we absolutely love – being in nature. The hike at Centennial Cone was also monumental for me because it was the first hike that we were doing, living in Colorado, while our best friends were also living in Colorado. I still don’t think that has fully sunk in.
Besides being only about a 25 minute drive from us near Golden, something really cool about Centennial Cone is that it has an alternating schedule; some days the trails are only open to hikers and on alternate days it is only open to mountain bikers. That way, either party can fully enjoy the use of the trail without having to worry about the other. The park has also completely closed the Elk Range Trail (as seen in the sign above) from February to June to protect elk during their calving season. So, we took the Travois Trail instead which did not disappoint.
Centennial Cone in the background.
The trail is about a 7 mile loop that isn’t very well shaded (and of course I was burnt afterwards) but is worth all of the beautifully lit views. Around the first bend, we saw a deer bounding down the right side of the mountain into the valley below and watched it make its way to the top of the left side which was pretty amazing.
As we would around the side of the mountain and through a meadow, we came upon my favorite view from the hike.
Craving some craft beers that we had promised ourselves after hiking, we didn’t end up finishing the entire loop and turned around after about an hour and a half. Overall, it was an amazing first hike with our friends and I would love to go back after the elk calving season and maybe see some on the Elk Range Trail!