|Waterfalls along the trail, very pretty|
I had no idea how incredible this hike would be when I started up the trail but it didn't take long to espy what a great trail this would be and I couldn't stop snapping photo's along the way. The hike to Stanley Reservoir is 2 miles each way; but the trail is difficult with Class 2 climbing (using your hands to help you) in some locations; but once you are out of the canyon and behind it, the last 1/3 of the trail becomes much easier as it meanders through high elevation meadows with wildflowers and golden aspen trees that glimmered in the sunlight.
Getting there: From Denver, head south on I-25 to the N. Academy exit, just north of Colorado Springs; exit number 156B. Continue west on the exit ramp and enter the Air Force Academy. **FYI; you have to present ID and have a short search of your vehicle to enter.**
|Facing east on dirt road, easy ]to miss|
Specs: The parking lot had about 6 vehicles in it, so it was not very busy on a Tuesday morning. There are no bathrooms here. The Stanley Canyon trail to the reservoir is 2 miles each way. There are numerous other trails that start from this parking lot; including a mountain biking trail. The trail to Stanley Canyon cannot be biked.
|Steep climb before canyon|
|Steeper climb up the river rocks|
The dogs were able to get water and cool themselves down in the stream while I snapped photos of the beautiful water shimmering in the sun. The most difficult portion of the trail is getting out of the canyon; I had to climb a steep section crossing over the river and slippery rock only to cross back over again. I had several slips and near falls, which would have hurt on the hard river rocks, fortunately I made it without incident. Beware, the rocks are very slippery when wet!
If you live in the area or know of other great hikes nearby; please leave a comment ~ I'd love to hear from you!
Click on map below for personal directions to hike.
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|Reflection looks like a painting to me|
|Sky in the water, I love Colorado|
|Rock is making sure the ducks don't get too close :)|
|Dogs walking through the Aspens|