Lookout Mountain Hike

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.
16.7 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.
781 m
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Directions to Trailhead

Lookout Mountain really does live up to its name, trust us. Hike up the quintessential Colorado woodland path to the impressive Lookout Mountain summit. From the overlook, revel in the expansive views of the mountainous landscape, see the Mummy Range, Este Park, and Fort Collins from atop the peak.

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Route Description for Lookout Mountain Hike

The Lookout Mountain Hike and summit provides those who conquer the steep terrain to the summit with unforgettable views. Lookout Mountain rewards adventurers with breathtaking panoramas of the Front Range, Continental Divide, nearby cities and the forested valleys below. This trail is no walk in the park, ensure you are prepared to ascend the gradually inclining trail all the way to the mountain’s summit. We promise it is well worth the effort, but the progressive elevation gain will inevitably tire your legs. Pack plenty of water and prepare for snow as you ascend the route to the summit.

Embark on your adventure along the Lookout Mountain Trail from the Donners Pass Trailhead. Take the Donners Pass Trail and you will quickly intersect with Box Prairie Creek. Hike along the path and you will eventually cross over Elk Creek before encountering a junction. Here, stay straight on the Donners Pass Trail. Ascend the rocky, wooded path as it guides you along a creek and to another intersection. There are several routes at this intersection, so make sure to stay on the Donner Pass Trail. As you ascend the path the steepness will intensify as you climb the rocky, exposed ridge up to the summit. At the next two junctions, stay left and you will be diverted onto the Lookout Mountain Trail.

Climb the rocky path to the summit of Lookout Mountain. Admire the panoramic vistas of the surrounding wilderness and Rocky Mountain Range. Refuel and rehydrate before commencing your descent. When you are ready, backtrack along the path all the way to the trailhead and parking lot.

Getting to the Lookout Mountain Hike Trailhead

The Lookout Mountain Hike departs from the Donner Pass Trailhead off Buckhorn Road.

Route Information

  • Backcountry Campground

    Dispersed Backcountry Camping, restrictions apply.

  • When to do


  • Pets allowed

    Yes - On Leash

  • Family friendly

    Older Children only

  • Route Signage


  • Crowd Levels


  • Route Type

    Out and back

Lookout Mountain Hike Elevation Graph

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Lookout Mountain Hike Reviews

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