Wildflower season is here in Colorado and because of it’s late proximity in the year and short window time, that means wildflowers are usually highly concentrated. These stunning fields of wildflowers that range in different variations will make for beautiful picnics, photographs, and quality time well spent in the outdoors. To make the most of your trip, we’d also highly recommend this awesome guide from Rocky Mountain National Park about how to identify wildflowers to make your experience even richer. Happy trails!
Known for its red sandstone formation, there’s also a peak trail here for catching fields of gorgeous summer wildflowers. Willow Creek Trail, approximately 1 hour, is the perfect spot for taking in an abundance of wildflowers, and if you’re into bird watching, the trail is also known for being a hotspot for various types of birds. Roxborough State Park, because of its proximity to Denver, makes it a very popular spot and convenient. According to Roxborough’s official website about the trail, “The Willow Creek Trail begins at the main trail head next to the Visitor Center. However the trail ends at the lower parking lot. The Willow Creek Trail is mostly a single track trail, is considered moderate for hiking difficulty and consists of approximately 1.5 miles with minimal change in elevation.”
2. Estes Park
July is the peak time to visit Estes Park’s nature if you’re searching for summer wildflowers. Boasting around 80 variations in July, Estes Park has a few different areas where you can catch a glimpse. From Lily Lake which offers fields of Columbine’s, Colorado’s state flower, to Trail Ridge Road, where you can travel across the highest paved road in the state and gather in sweeping views, plus see Alpine Aves and Forget-Me-Nots along the way. Or, if you’re looking for something a little more urban, take in the flowers in town by way of Big Thompson River Walk, which starts at the Estes Park Visitor Center.
For true, natural wildflower blooms, head to Alpine Loop Scenic Byway, where you’ll need a 4×4 with high clearance to make it here. The wild brush is worth it though, and only viewable from June to September when it’s free of snow. The scenic drive comes out to around 65 miles with beautiful swaths of wild flowers in full bloom during the summer. We suggest allowing for a full 7 hours to take in everything.
From waterfalls to wildflowers, Ridgeway is a great summer destination to see summer blooms. There’s the extremely popular Blue Lakes Trail which leads you to a lake as clear blue as you can find, surrounded by Mt. Sneffel’s rocky peaks and fields of wildflowers. Or, access Mt Sneffel a different way, through the Lower, Middle, and Upper Blue Lakes for a chance to get a panoramic shot of both the lakes and flowers. Either way, be prepared for a stunning scene made even more beautiful in the summer foilage.
If you want to view the summer bloom without the price point of gas then why not stay local and give Denver Botanic Garden some love. They’ve got a few garden collections that you can enjoy, from Alpine flowers to local native flowers that grow in different regions of Colorado.