Paint Mines Interpretive Park was on my to-hike list for most of 2017, but I intentionally waited until autumn to take the kids there, knowing that there would be no shade and that it could be quite warm in the summer. Because of this, I think it could be a great winter hike as long as you go on a day that’s not windy.
We parked at the main entrance, which was the first parking lot we came to on Paint Mine Road. From there, we hiked on the wide gravel trail about a half mile to the first rock formations, and then a bit farther to some larger formations. There are a couple of benches along the way, but no shade!
The trail is easy, and I think most strollers would be OK on it. Keep in mind that pets and bikes are not allowed anywhere in this park.
The rock formations really are beautiful, giving new meaning to the nickname “Colorful Colorado”. And, it’s quiet out there!
Climbing on the rocks is prohibited, which is perhaps understandable but also frustrating to my kids who wanted to climb! We didn’t hike all of the trails, but there’s about four miles of trails if you want to explore.
There is an overlook where you can park on the ridge above the biggest area of rock formations. I couldn’t tell for sure if there was actually a trail that came down from that parking area, though, and it doesn’t appear that there’s one on the official map.
This is definitely a hike worth doing! The Paint Mines are just outside of Calhan, at 29950 Paint Mine Rd. You can find more information at the El Paso County Parks website.
Here are some more Colorado Springs-area hikes that I’ve blogged about. I’ll be sharing more soon!
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