Hiking Trails in Colorado | Mitchell Creek Canyon Trail

Hiking Trails in Colorado | Mitchell Creek Canyon Trail

Trail InformationHiking Trails in Colorado | Mitchell Creek Canyon Trail

Trail Name: Mitchell Creek Canyon Trail

Location: East side of Castle Rock, Colorado

Date: January 29, 2020

Time at the Trail Head: 7:00 am

Trail Length: 2.9 miles

Elevation Gain: 223 feet

Elev. at Trail Head: 6,648 feet

# of Hikers Passed: 2

# of Mnt. Bikers Passed: 0

# of Horses Passed: 0

Mosquitoes: 0

Trail Research

I needed to test out the navigation features more thoroughly on my new Garmin inReach Mini, so I hit a trail close to home, on the east side of Castle Rock, Colorado.

Hiking Trails in Colorado | Mitchell Creek Canyon Trail

I looked for a nice beautiful day during the week and I have been fortunate to find a sunny 44 degree day, which is perfect here in Colorado.

Drive to the Trail

The drive is a little boring for me, as I am driving through Castle Rock, but for those of you who are driving from farther away, the drive to the trail will be saturated with views of bluffs, pine trees and the Rocky Mountains. That should make your drive a little nicer.

Drive to Mitchell Creek Canyon Trail

Drive to Mitchell Creek Canyon Trail

My Day on the Trail

It was a gorgeous crisp January morning as I started off on the Mitchell Creek Canyon Trail. The temperature was about 25 degrees when I started but ended up at a balmy 35 degrees when I returned to the truck.

The trailhead is paved and will hold 10 or more vehicles, depending on how people park. There are no facilities here.

Mitchell Creek Canyon Trailhead

The sun was starting to rise over the hills near the Castlewood Canyon State Park and it made for some beautiful photos and videos early in the hike.

Mitchell Creek Canyon Trail

Mitchell Creek Canyon Trail

The trail starts at a high point and then heads down into the Mitchell Creek Canyon. There are a lot of pine trees and incredible rock formations.

Mitchell Creek Canyon Trail

Mitchell Creek Canyon Trail

Mitchell Creek Canyon Trail

There are even some waterfalls that were ice falls at this time of the year.

Mitchell Creek Canyon Trail

Mitchell Creek Canyon Trail

I went to this trail to test out my new Garmin inReach Mini and didn’t think the views would be that impressive, but I was wrong again.

The trail started to lead up out of the canyon after about a mile and then was on top of the rock bluffs for about another 1/2 mile.

Mitchell Creek Canyon Trail

Mitchell Creek Canyon Trail

The views were astounding here, looking back up the canyon to the west and then looking out over the ranch land and to Franktown to the east.

Mitchell Creek Canyon Trail on Rock Bluff

Mitchell Creek Canyon Trail on Rock Bluff

Mitchell Creek Canyon Trail on Rock Bluff

The hike was really easy as much of it is over smooth rocks and trails that are more dry, so I don’t think this area gets to muddy.

I found myself wishing I had family and friends with me on this hike as a lot of them would really enjoy scrambling over the rocks.

You have to be a little careful as there area a lot of vertical drops around the rock bluffs.

Mitchell Creek Canyon Trail

Mitchell Creek Canyon Trail

Mitchell Creek Canyon Trail

Mitchell Creek Canyon Trail

Mitchell Creek Canyon Trail

Mitchell Creek Canyon Trail

Mitchell Creek Canyon Trail

This would be a great trail to bring people who don’t want to hike long distances or up a steep mountain, plus there are awesome places to relax and enjoy the views or have a picnic.

You can even see Pikes Peak in the distance in some areas.

Pikes Peak from Mitchell Creek Canyon Trail

Pikes Peak from Mitchell Creek Canyon Trail

Pikes Peak from Mitchell Creek Canyon Trail

Trail Recommendations

The Mitchell Creek Canyon Trail is better for people who are okay with scrambling up and over some rocks. If you don’t like that, there is a shorter loop trail at the top of the rock bluff called Chuck’s Loop Trail. The trail is only 1.6 miles long and you can shorten it up a little if you do an out and back instead of making the loop.

I didn’t need my ICETrekkers or Trekking poles on this hike but some good cold weather gear was important. Some good gloves, stocking cap and coat would be a great place to start.

Eddie Bauer Men's BC Igniter Stretch Jacket, Pimento Regular L
  • Built for winter in the alpine, this waterproof, insulated jacket combines the unrestricted mobility of stretch construction in both the shell and lining, together with critical sub-zero warmth and complete weather protection
  • The guide tested and approved feature set inludes an adjustable, insulated hood; external chest pockets; high hand pockets for pack compatibility; an internal chest pocket; and a drawcord hem for adjusting the fit and sealing out cold
  • NOTE: Temperature ratings are based on a controlled laboratory test, using low and moderate activity levels
  • Also consider: your sensitivity to cold and wind-chill; time of exposure; activity level; and use of layering

Lessons Learned

I have started to realize that I do judge trails before hiking them, as I don’t think many of them will be pretty, when they actually turn out to be spectacular.

It’s best to do as much research as you can, and I use AllTrails primarily, then hit the trail and enjoy what the great outdoors gives you.

Check out this short video of the Mitchell Creek Canyon trail on YouTube.

I would love to know if you have had any experience on this trail or have other trails you love to hike. Leave a Comment Below or send me an Email.

 

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Mitchell Creek Canyon Trail

7.4

Scenic Drive

5.0/10

Accessibility

10.0/10

Mountain Views

6.0/10

Lake or Stream Views

9.0/10

Well Maintained Trails

7.0/10

Pros

  • Beautiful Rock Formations
  • Great Canyon Views Towards Franktown
  • Waterfalls
  • Creek
  • Easy Access

Cons

  • Maybe to Rocky for Some People
  • Vertical Rock Falls

4 thoughts on “Hiking Trails in Colorado | Mitchell Creek Canyon Trail”

  1. My brother in law loves to hike and I think he would love to see that place. Thank you for sharing those awesome pictures! Even the drive leading to it feels like part of the experience. I was looking closely at the pictures, there were some spectacular rock formations. Great review!

    1. Thank you Sonny. Even when I think the drive isn’t spectacular, I have to remind myself that I’m living in the Rocky Mountains, and the drive and the trails are incredible to experience.

      Rick

  2. Many thanks to you for sharing such a wonderful article with us and I love hiking .Through your article I found a very nice description of the Colorado Hiking Trail that I really enjoyed. I have a wonderful experience about the Mitchell Creek Canyon Trail which is an unforgettable event in my life .My time of day was very helpful for the trail .It seemed like a privilege to me when I moved to Colorado .The scene began to float in my eyes even today when the sun started to rise over the mountains and my journey started with such a beautiful video. The trail started at a high point and when it came down slowly I could see many pine trees. These scenes are like I can’t move my eyes in any way .The views were truly spectacular. To the west, the dunes, the ranch, the east to Franktown .And here it was like enjoying the rocks .And I enjoyed the trail very much, as well as my friends and I think our picnic was really nice .When I went, those memories of the snowfall still remain in my mind today .But we were always aware of how to stay good and we were able to finish our picnic very well .I hope others will share their new experiences with you soon after reading this article.

    1. Thank you so much for sharing your experience with the trail. I didn’t think I would like the trail much but fell in love with it once I started down the trail.

      The rock formations are really incredible.

      Rick

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