Hike of the Week: Flagstaff
Flagstaff is one of the those hikes that the locals know and is popular with tourists, so if you haven’t checked out Flagstaff, you must put it on the list as one of the trails to do before summer ends! Like many of Boulder’s hiking trails, Flagstaff offers a variety of options for hikers; unlike some of the other nearby trails, the summit can also be reached by road which I have heard is a popular date night spot for its incredible views of the city, the Continental Divide, Indian Peaks Wilderness, and Rocky Mountain National Park. Also, if you have the time, be sure to check out Flagstaff Nature Center at the summit!
To hike Flagstaff, park at the Gregory Canyon Trailhead, head towards Baseline road, and you will see that the trail starts northwest of the intersection, or where Baseline Road turns into Flagstaff Road, follow the trail and be ready for some strenuous uphill sections that will be frequently rewarded by spectacular views. The trail is about 1.5 miles with a 1,120 ft. ascent. If you want a little longer hike, start at Chautauqua and hike over to the Gregory Canyon Trailhead, then to the Flagstaff Trailhead.
Once you reach the summit, you have the chance to enjoy some fantastic views, a picnic area, and other trails. Other nearby trails to check out include Boy Scout, Range View, Plains Overlook, and Ute Trail. All are less than a mile long and are fairly easy. For the hiker looking for something different, try the Flagstaff, Gregory Canyon Loop: at the summit take Ute Trail to the Gregory Canyon trail. The loop is a little over 3 miles long.
- Restrooms are located at Chautauqua Trailhead and at the Flagstaff summit.
- Picnic tables and grills are at the summit, but there is no access to potable water.
- Bikes are allowed on Flagstaff Road and Chapman Drive.