Aspen is home to great hiking trails, with numerous hiking options ranging from easy short hikes to difficult day-long adventures.
All hikes listed are dog-friendly except where noted. Dogs must be leashed at all times.
Hiking trails in or around Aspen
A short trail that begins at 8th & Meadows, then descends behind Aspen Meadows Resort and runs along Castle Creek. About 1/2 mile (one way), Meadows trail links to the Rio Grande Trail. Easy.
Rio Grande Trail
The trail starts behind the Post Office near Mill & Puppy Smith. A pretty stroll to the sound of the Roaring Fork River, the 1st two miles (one way) are paved & shared with cyclists, dogs, strollers, and runners. At Cemetery Lane, the trail turns to dirt and runs all the way to Basalt. Easy.
Rio Grande Trail info & photos »
Richmond Ridge is a five-mile (one way) trail off the back of Aspen Mountain. The trail begins behind the gondola and is actually a dirt road, sometimes shared with off-road vehicles. With the entire trail above 11,000 feet, the views are amazing. Easy.
Richmond Ridge info & photos »
The Smuggler Mountain trailhead is in east Aspen. The trail is actually a multi-purpose dirt road shared by hikers, bikers, runners & dogs. A fairly steep 1.5 mile (one way) climb ending at the observation deck overlooking Aspen. Moderate.
Smuggler Mountain info & photos »
Hunter Creek Trail
Hunter Creek Trail starts from Aspen and heads up a rocky path for about 2.5 miles (one way) with about a 1,000 vertical foot elevation gain. Beautiful, mostly shady hiking next to the creek & in the midst of Aspens. Moderate.
Hunter Creek Trail info & photos »
Hiking trails west of Aspen
River Run Trail
From the roundabout west of Aspen, take Castle Creek Rd to Ashcroft.
The River Run Trail is a beautiful 1.5 mile (one way) hike within 15 minutes of downtown Aspen. The hike starts at the ghost town of Ashcroft. After passing through Ashcroft, the River Run trail begins, running along the river. Easy.
Note: Dogs are not allowed in Ashcroft.
River Run Trail info & photos »
Maroon Bells area trails
From the roundabout, take Maroon Creek Rd.
Note: During the summer & busy times, cars are only permitted past the guard gate to the Maroon Lake parking lot before 9 am or after 5 pm. Park at Aspen Highlands and take the Maroon Bells bus (runs approx. every 20 minutes).
Maroon Lake Scenic Loop Trail
The 1 mile (round trip) Maroon Lake Scenic Trail begins at the Maroon Lake parking lot & follows the lake to the far side, meandering along the creek. Easy.
Maroon Lake Scenic Loop Trail info & photos »
Crater Lake Trail
A 3.6-mile round trip hike from Maroon Lake to Crater Lake, Crater Lake Trail is an uphill climb through the trees to a Crater Lake. Moderate.
Crater Lake Trail info & photos »
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