Red Rock Canyon Trailhead: Ridge Road Trailhead

Activities: Hiking, Mountain Biking, Rock Climbing

Closest City / Town: Colorado Springs, Colorado

Driving Directions:

  • Start by getting onto I-25.
  • Take the Cimarron exit (Highway 24) and head west.
  • Take a left on Ridge Road, and park in the first parking lot (the lower lot).
  • Note: If you pass Manitou Springs, then you’ve gone too far.

Hiking Distance: 2.05 miles (roundtrip)

Description: Red Rock Canyon Open Space is generally touted as the Garden of the Gods for Colorado Springs locals.  Its superb red rock sandstone formations, rich history, and brilliant trail system make this park one of Colorado Springs’ best.  There are plenty of locations to picnic and hiking opportunities for everyone — novice and expert hikers alike.

We’ve named the trail described on this page the Quarry Pass Loop, although it has no official name.  Begin your hike by jumping onto the Mesa Trail.  Take the Mesa Trail uphill for approximately .6 miles.

Next, hang a left on the Quarry Pass Trail, following it .65 miles. This is a marvelous section of trail that winds through the old sandstone quarry.  It’s one of the few places in the State of Colorado where you can hike directly through an old rock quarry; take notice of the unique texture of the block cuts as you peruse its depths.

Descend .55 miles back down to the parking lot on the Red Rock Canyon Trail.  You’ll most likely run into climbers along the way.  Finally, follow the walking path at the bottom .25 miles back to your vehicle (at the lower parking lot).

Palmer Land Trust holds a conservation easement on the majority of Red Rock Canyon Open Space.

Worth Noting: There are three other things worth mentioning about Red Rock Canyon: 1) nearly every trail in the park offers great views of Garden of the Gods to the north; 2) 85 climbing routes have been established in the park (ranging from class 4 to 5.13) along the Red Rock Canyon Trail; and 3) the trails are great for mountain biking – they are perhaps some of the best easy/moderate mountain biking trails in the Colorado Springs area.


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