This large expanse of forest just west of Pikes Peak is a gem to visit year-round, from snowshoeing and cross-country skiing in winter to some of the most stunning fall-color hikes in the Pikes Peak region. You’ll find 55 miles of trails among its 5000 acres of woodlands and rolling hills and 110 campsites with electrical hookups, along with 22 primitive sites.
"My mother and sister visited me in Colorado Springs from Atlanta one autumn, and all they could talk about was seeing the aspens. I couldn’t think of a better place than Mueller, and it did not disappoint, with plenty of trails of varying length meandering through large golden aspen groves. They still talk about it years later."
- In snowy years, the park offers great snow coverage for Nordic skiing. It can be uneven, though, so call or check their website first. Book a night in one of their year-round yurts or cabins to complete your winter experience.
- Make it a priority to visit the park when the aspens have changed, and then continue your day with a stunning drive down Colorado Highway 67 to historic Cripple Creek.
- The Dome Rock State Wildlife Area is just south of the park and accessible via the Four Mile Trail or a separate trailhead. Give Dome Rock a visit too, though the trails are closed Dec. 1 to July 15 for bighorn sheep calving.
Recommended season(s): Winter for snowshoeing or cross-country skiing, late spring – late fall for hiking and camping
—R. Scott Rappold