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    Horseshoe Loop Trail

    This reflects the 10Adventures difficulty rating for each route. We aim to keep ratings consistent across regions.
    This reflects the estimated time the majority of users will take on this trail. If you are slower, add time to the top-end figure. If you are fast, then you may complete this route faster than this time range.
    This reflects the return distance of this route as measured by the GPS file.
    8.0 km
    This reflects the total elevation gained throughout this route as measured by the GPS file. This includes all ascents and descents, and is higher than what is quoted in most route guides, which simply measure the distance between the starting-point and high-point of the route.
    381 m
    User Ratings
    These ratings are completed by users who have completed this trail and not subject to reviews by 10Adventures.
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    Directions to Trailhead

    The Horseshoe Loop Trail is a stunning adventure through the Golden Gate Canyon State Park. There is nothing better than a circuit trail because the scenery is new every step of the way. Hike beneath the coverage of towering pines, through aspen groves, and up to a luxuriant meadow where visitors can often spot grazing deer and elk!

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    Route Description for Horseshoe Loop Trail

    The Horseshoe Loop Trail is a must-add to your Denver itinerary. Reconnect with nature and let go of the stressors of the real world as you adventure through the beautiful Colorado wilderness. This path also presents the perfect opportunity to spot wildlife, so keep an eye out! As this route weaves between tree shade and exposed terrain we recommend wearing layers as insurance against changing weather conditions. Note that because this trail is located within the bounds of the Golden Gate Canyon State Park, visitors are required to purchase a day pass which typically costs around $10USD.

    Begin your journey along the Horseshoe Loop Trail from the trailhead off Crawford Gulch Road. You can choose to complete this adventure from either direction, but we prefer to hike this one clockwise. From the trailhead, track the Black Bear Trail beneath the timberline. As you travel along this path, you will be rewarded with expansive views of the Front Range foothills and on a clear day, sights of the snow-capped Front Range peaks. Eventually, you will confront an intersection, stay straight and hike northeast along the Mule Deer Trail. Now passing through the meadows, keep an eye out for deer and elk.

    At the next junction, turn right onto the Horseshoe Trail, passing several dispersed campsites. Keep left at the next two intersections, maintaining the same trail. The Horseshoe Trail will guide you southeast down a forested gulch. At the next junction, keep right onto the Black Bear/ Horseshoe Connector Trail, which will deliver you back to the trailhead.

    Getting to the Horseshoe Loop Trail Trailhead

    The Horseshoe Loop Trail departs from the trailhead off Crawford Gulch Road.

    Route Information

    • Backcountry Campground

      Dispersed Backcountry Campsites

    • When to do


    • Pets allowed

      Yes - On Leash

    • Family friendly


    • Route Signage


    • Crowd Levels


    • Route Type


    Horseshoe Loop Trail Elevation Graph

    Weather Forecast

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    Horseshoe Loop Trail Reviews

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