Boulder, Colorado has some amazing hikes and one of them is the Flatirons Loop Trail. We had just started our 2020 September road trip and reached Boulder mid-afternoon. We of course were ready for a quick hike to acclimate a bit to the altitude. The Second Flatiron Loop seemed perfect.
To access the Flatirons Loop Trail you need to park at Chautauqua Park in Boulder. There you will find the trailhead. We followed to the right of the Flatirons Loop and we continued to the right back to our car at Chautauqua Park.
Hiking the Flatirons Loop Trail
We started at the Chautauqua Trailhead and after taking some photos from the Flatirons View Point we followed the path to the right. The Loop is a combination of trails starting with the Chautauqua Trail, then the Flatirons Loop Trail and finally the Bluebell Road. There are many other trails that split off from these trails. From where we parked we marked this hike at 3 miles. In general, I would consider it an easy to moderate hike.
The Chautauqua Trail
This part of the loop was easy hiking with plenty of views of the Flatirons peaking through the forrest. In addition, the trail was a typical dirt trail with some rocks. It was moderately busy when we were here. The Chautauqua Trail turns into the Flatirons Loop. You also can access the out and back trail of the First/Second Flatiron Trail from here.
First/Second Flatiron Trail
This 0.8 mile (each way) is an out and back trail that takes you closer to the Flatirons. We were meeting my son and his wife for dinner so we only hiked a bit of this as we were pressed for time. This trail is tougher than the Loop with more elevation and rocks. We hiked over an area of rocks and found a good spot for a photo before turning back to the Loop trail. We will have to finish this another time!
Back on the Flatirons Loop Trail
Once back on the Flatirons trail wee passed some rock climbers. It looked like quite a climb but we had no desire to do this! This part of the trail was a bit more rocky but it was fun.
ou will start descending and hike through mostly forrest until you come across a boardwalk and then the Bluebell Picnic Shelter and Restroom. From here you will connect to Bluebell Road, pass the Chautauqua area and connect back to the trailhead. To explain, the Chautauqua area was built in the 1890’s and was a type family retreat escape area. This historic place emphasized culture and arts and still continues today. In addition, many of the historic buildings are still here.
The Flatirons Loop is another great trail we loved in Boulder Colorado. Not to mention it is the perfect trail to acclimate to Colorado.
You can also follow more of our Colorado posts at these links: