Pikes Peak - Eagle Cliffs Overlook Loop, Staunton State Park, Boulder - Denver - Golden - Fort Collins - Lyons, Colorado
Pikes Peak - Eagle Cliffs Overlook Loop - 7.6 miles
Staunton State Park
|Round-Trip Length:||7.6 miles|
|Start-End Elevation:||8,310' - 9,580' (9,580' max elevation on loop)|
|Elevation Change:||+1,270' net elevation gain (+1,403' total elevation gain)|
Pikes Peak - Eagle Cliffs Overlook Loop - 7.6 Miles Round-Trip
The Staunton Ranch, Mason Creek and Bear Paw trails form a 7.6 mile lollipop loop to three of the highest accessible points in Staunton State Park -- Catamount Overlook (9,402’), Pikes Peak Overlook (9,509’) and Eagle Cliffs Overlook (9,579’).
The hike begins at the Ranch Hand Picnic Area on the Staunton Ranch Trail. The SRT quickly comes to an intersection with the Mason Creek Trail (.05) - turn right on Mason Creek through aspens and a meadow to an unnamed trail split (.3 miles).
Stay left on Mason Creek and rise through a mixed forest with several easy creek crossings to the Bear Paw Trail split and beginning of the loop (2.15 miles : 9,130’). Turn left for clockwise travel and quicker access to the overlooks.
The Bear Paw Trail climbs steadily to Catamount Overlook with views across a broad valley and red, rocky outcrops to the north (3.25 miles : 9,402’).
It continues up past two unnamed spurs and along a granite rim with expansive views to Pikes Peak Overlook (3.45 mile : 9,509’). Panoramas include Pikes Peak, cliffs to the north and south, the Lion’s Head rock formation and Staunton Ranch below.
The Bear Paw Trail rises through a dense forest to the hiker-only Eagle Cliffs Overlook path (4.17 miles : 9,489’). Turn left and switchback up to a rock scramble to the overlook (4.27 miles : 9,579’). This windy viewpoint looks across snowy mountains, the Staunton Rocks and towering granite cliffs. Turn back and resume clockwise travel.
Turn back and resume clockwise travel to the Old Mill - Mason Creek Trail split (4.7 miles : 9,428’). Turn right and downhill on the Mason Creek Trail back to the beginning of the loop (5.4 miles). Retrace your steps on the Mason Creek and Staunton Ranch trails back to the Ranch Hand Picnic Area (6.5 miles).
- N39 30 00 W105 22 44 — Ranch Hand Picnic Area and Trailhead
- The short path to the Eagle Cliffs overlook requires sure footing on steep rock stairs. Views from this point are some of the best in Staunton, highlighted by snow-covered peaks and colorful granite outcrops that distinguish the park.
Camping and Backpacking Information
- There is no backcountry camping at Staunton State Park.
- Fishing is permitted at Elk Falls Pond and the Davis Ponds with a valid Colorado fishing license.
Rules and Regulations
- There's a $7 entrance fee to Staunton State Park. Colorado State Parks passes are accepted.
- Park Hours: 8 a.m. - 5 p.m.
- Dogs are permitted at Staunton State Park, but must be on a six-foot leash.
- Rock climbing is allowed. Climb without bolting or fixed protection only. Seasonal raptor closures are clearly posted and strictly enforced.
- Mountain biking is allowed on multi-use trails.
Directions to Trailhead
Staunton State Park is located 40 miles SW of downtown Denver in Pine, CO. The park is approximately 6 miles west of Conifer on the north side of US Highway 285.
From the junction of US 285 and C470 near Denver, travel 18.4 miles on 285 South towards Fairplay. Turn right (north) on Elk Creek Road. Travel on Elk Creek Road for 1.2 miles, then turn right into the park. The Ranch Hand Picnic Shelter and Trailhead is .5 miles from this entrance.
Staunton State Park
12012 S. Elk Creek Road
Pine, CO 80470