Thursday, May 16, 2013

In my quest to find new hikes, near the metro area, that are at least semi-toddler friendly, I stumbled across a trail outside of Leyden, Colorado -- which is fairly close to Arvada just off Hwy 93 between Golden and Boulder.  
When I arrived on a weekday morning, the parking lot was nearly empty and it took me a while to get Magnolia out of the car and into the Ergo carrier.  I still have not mastered this and its a struggle each hike to get her on my back.  I am much more comfortable when hiking to wear the Ergo (which is extremely comfy on the back), over the hiking backpack.  The downside with the Ergo, no place for water.  During this hike, I had the baby on my back and the water in the camelback on my front, talk about feeling like a pack mule!  
The trail has no sign, just paths, we started up the mountainside, which goes pretty much straight up to the top of the plateau.  The entire time we were hiking, we could hear coyotes hollering from across the street, I looked at my watch and it was 11am, so I was surprised to hear them in the day like that.   

Once we reached the top of the plateau, we realized we were next to the Westfield Small Aircraft Runway.  Magnolia is in an 'airplane, helicopter, car and train' phase, so she was pretty excited about seeing airplanes and all of the prairie dogs running around and chirping at us.  
We pretty much followed the trail from the top of the plateau around a small loop and then out toward these weird concrete posts on the top of the plateau.  We then followed the path down the hillside and through the meadow back to the car.  It was easy to follow, and hard to get lost.  Check out the park yourself sometime for a quick day hike, here are some more photos, great for kiddos too!  

 Views looking West
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 Looking down at the parking lot, and across the street is where the coyotes were howling! 
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Looking at the trail from above, down into the valley
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 Weird concrete things
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 What are these, anyone?
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 This was hiked in April, still no signs of spring yet here! 
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 Someone just had to walk. 
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 Must hike herself, 'down mama' she says
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Thanks for reading!  Do you know of any good 'toddler friendly' hikes on the front range?  If so, please comment!

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