Green Mountain Park

View of red rocks from Green Mountain

Overview

(William F. Hayden Park)

There are several trails meandering through the meadows that blanket this hillside, just don’t veer too far off the path. There are signs on the trail that warn you not to disturb metal items you find in the ground, because there is a potential that you will find some un-exploded munitions from world war 2 times off the trails in this park. If you do find suspicious items mark the location, leave the area the same way you came in. DO NOT DISTURB THE ITEMS, CALL 911 and give them the details. There are some spectacular views from the trails in all directions. You have the Hog back and the Front Range to the west and the Denver metro area creeping in from all other directions. While the trails are multi use in this park it is very popular with the mountain biking crowd and for good reason the trails are nice and the hills are steep but not overly grueling. The Boulder/Golden map is missing some pieces of connecting trail on the Green Mountain trail and the Rooney trail is not listed on the map. There are an abundance of side trails that have been made over the years from various surrounding subdivisions that I did not document and are not listed on the map, so bear in mind that there are paths that are not listed here, on the map or even on the parks official map.

12.2 Miles of Trails

Park Details:

  • Dogs are allowed but must be leashed.
  • Hiking
  • Mountain Biking
  • Centaurs Equestrians
  • All of the trails are well marked but some signs are sun faded
  • Park opens at 5:00 AM and closes at 10:00 PM
  • Camping is not allowed in the park
  • Hunting or firearms are not permitted
  • No glass containers
  • Paragliding is allowed with a permit
  • No Entrance fees
  • Sadly no nude trail running here (Not that you can do that anywhere else either.)

Emergency contacts:

Jefferson County Sheriff’s office @ (303) 277-0211

Lakewood Parks @ (303) 697-6159

If the event is life threatening dial 911

Quick Reference Map

A static version of the trail map can be downloaded from Green Mountain Park.

You are also welcome as always to use the free GPX files to help plan your next hiking adventure.

Box O Rox Trail

Difficulty Rank7 (Moderate)
Views Rank6
Distance Rank2.1 Miles
Time NeededAbout  Minutes
Wildflowers off of Box O Rox trail in Green Mountain Park.
Green Mountain

Details:

  • Connecting trails: Green Mountain Trail, Summit Loop
  • No tree cover
  • Closest parking area: Parking lot 4: Rooney Rd. parking lot

Trailhead directions: First trail on the left after you cross the footbridge over C-470

Trail Highlights:

  • Wildflowers
  • Fantastic views of the Front Range
  • OneSunChasers favorite trail in this park

Review:

This is one of my favorite hikes in the park; the other is Rooney Valley trail. The views are not as good as some of the other hikes, but the trail is nice and gentle as it winds up the side of the mountain. With the gradual rise even traveling at a moderately fast pace you are not likely to get too winded. As with many of the other hikes in the park, there is no tree cover, and the sound of C-470 is constant as you rise above the city.

Green Mountain Trail

Difficulty Rank8 (Hard)
Views Rank7
Distance Rank6.5 Miles
Time NeededAbout 3 Hours 10 Minute

Details:

  • Connecting trails: North Access Trail, Summit Loop, Rooney Valley Trail, Box O Rox, John O. Hayden Trail.
  • Very busy trail
  • Loop
  • No tree cover
  • Steep Elevation gain and flat areas
  • Closest parking area: Parking lot 1

Trailhead directions: Trail starts at lot (The trail is easily accessed from all parking lots.)

Trail Highlights:

  • Wildflowers
  • Fantastic views of Denver
  • Fantastic views of the Front Range

Review:

Being connected to all but one of the trails in the park, you will sooner or later find yourself wandering along this snaking path as it winds through the park. This trail along with all of the other trails in the park is great for wildflowers during the spring, and if looking at flowers isn’t your thing, then look just about anywhere else and you will have a fantastic view, sometimes it is of the city, and others it is of the hog back. All of the trails in this park seem to be very popular for mountain bikers so stay alert and be on your toes if you are hiking. It is notable to mention that the trail is marked very well near the top of Green Mountain, but adequate signage is often missing at the trailheads.

The Boulder/Golden Map #100 does not depict the trails in this park as clearly as it should. The map does not represent the trail as a loop. This is partially due to the trail using an access road on the west side to reconnect with the single track portion that loops around to the east side of the mountain, this is very easy to overlook on the trail with map in hand.

Hayden Trail

Difficulty Rank7 (Moderate)
Views Rank6
Distance Rank1.6 Miles
Time NeededAbout 37 Minutes
Trail winding up the side of Green Mountain.
Green Mountain

Details:

  • Connecting trail: Green Mountain Trail
  • Very busy trail
  • Steep elevation gain
  • No tree cover
  • Closest parking area: Parking lot 2

Trailhead directions: Trail starts at the parking lot

Trail Highlights:

  • Wildflowers
  • Fantastic views of Denver
  • Fantastic views of the Front Range

Review:

Not as steep as some of the other climbs in the park, but with great views as you climb to the top of green mountain. Like all the other trails in the park there are no trees and mountain bikers are either climbing away or descending from the clouds with unbridled vigor. This is probably the most popular trail in the park and is well marked on both ends.

North Access Trail

Difficulty Rank8 (Hard)
Views Rank5
Distance Rank2 Miles
Time NeededAbout 63 Minutes

Details:

  • Connecting trail: Summit Loop
  • Steep elevation gain
  • No tree cover
  • Closest parking area: Parking lot 1

Trailhead directions: Trail starts at the north side of the parking lot

Trail Highlights:

  • Wildflowers
  • Fantastic views of Denver
  • Fantastic views of the Front Range

Review:

The only reason this trail gets a lower views score than the other trails is because there is a giant tower constantly looming over you as you hike the hill side, other than that the same great views you get with the other trails on this side of the park apply to this one once you reach the summit. This trail is definitely less popular with the mountain biking crowd, it is also very steep due to the lack of switchbacks on the main trail and littered with loose rocks.

Rooney Valley Trail

Difficulty Rank4 (Easy)
Views Rank3
Distance Rank3.4 Miles
Time NeededAbout 1 Hour

Details:

  • Connecting trail: Green Mountain Trail
  • Strong Elevation gain
  • No tree cover
  • Closest parking area: Parking lot 4

Trailhead directions: Trail starts after you cross the pedestrian bridge

Trail Highlights:

  • Wildflowers
  • Fantastic views of Denver
  • Excellent views of the Front Range

Review:

If you are starting this hike from the top of Green Mountain, there are 3 possible places to start the trail, all lead down to a junction with the portion of the trail that leads down the hill. Note that the two farthest out trailheads are marked and the one in the center is not marked. Along the path there is a paragliding launch area that is open to use to those that have the appropriate permits. As you continue down the path you will come to a valley flanked on both sides by vigorous brush growth and home to the occasional mule deer. When you reach the cruxes of the valley, about 1 mile down there are two options available. You can either head down an unmarked trail another half mile and rejoin the Green Mountain trail, or the other option sticks to the side of the hill and continues around the park and terminates near parking lot 3 on the southeast side of the park. If you are using the Boulder/Golden 100 map you will see that this trail is not present on the map, but it is depicted on the trail map in the park, so you may want to snap a picture of the sign before you head out.

Summit Loop Trail

Difficulty Rank5 (Moderate)
Views Rank8
Distance Rank2.7 Miles
Time NeededAbout 1 Hour
View of wildflowers from top of Green Mountain
Green Mountain

Details:

  • Connecting trail: Green Mountain Trail
  • Moderate Elevation gain
  • No tree cover
  • Closest parking area: Parking lot 4:

Trailhead directions: Start at Rooney parking lot | L-Box O Rox | L-Summit Trail

Trail Highlights:

  • Wildflowers
  • Fantastic views of Denver
  • Escellent views of the Front Range

Review:

Aerial views of Golden and Denver on the same trail with the turn of a head Summit loop delivers big time. What more could you ask for? Maybe a couple shade trees, but you get what you get and you don’t throw a fit. This trail wanders along the northern section of the park near the summit of Green Mountain and has some very impressive views of Golden, Denver metro area and well out to the northern Front Range. Again this trail is not accurately depicted on the map so take a look at the .gpx files, or take a picture of the park map. The trail is well signed and easy to follow so you need not worry about getting lost.

All the information listed in this post is also available in an E-book which can be purchased from Amazon. Please consider purchasing a copy, or one of the other outdoor guides we have available!

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