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I am a New York-based writer, travel lover, and author of The Drive North and Destination Paranormal. I have several other books in the works, including fiction.

Hiking the Garden of the Gods

There are a handful of places that I seem to visit each year in Colorado, whether it be by choice or chance. It’s almost as if I’m drawn to them as their beauty eclipses any other lovely spot in this great state. One of the places that I drop in on annually, if not more, is the Garden of the Gods in Colorado Springs.

The family of Charles Elliot Perkins, head of the Burlington Railroad, donated the land to the city of Colorado Springs upon his death in the early 1900s. Initially Perkins purchased the land to build a home, but instead decided to preserve nature. But unlike the Red Rocks Amphitheatre or Roxborough State Park, similiar places known for beautiful red rocks, the 3,300 acre Garden of the Gods, which sits at the base of Pikes Peak, is free and open to the public per the request of the Perkins family.
The Garden of the Gods, named by two surveyors exploring the site in 1859 as a place fit for the gods to assemble, offers many great trails for hiking or horseback riding. Rock climbing is also allowed, but by permit only. Personally, I prefer to keep my feet on the ground and explore the unpaved trails in the nearby hills. The paved trails around the large rocks are easily accessible and thus bring in large crowds, so it’s nice to escape a bit and enjoy the scenery in a quieter setting.
The park, which is celebrating it’s 100th birthday, offers opportunities for some wildlife viewing as well. Bobcats, snakes and deer were all spotted this month, according to a sign in the visitor’s center, but there are many more animals out there. This is one of the few spots in Colorado that I have not been fortunate enough to spot anything though. I think it’s simply because of the crowds that are drawn to this gorgeous area.
Fossil finding, like in much of the rest of Colorado, is also possible, but probably as unlikely as seeing wildlife, other than the birds that nest in the 300 foot high rocks, in the park. But with so many other great opportunities and such beautiful scenery, it isn’t a bother to miss such things. The Garden of the Gods is spectacular nonetheless and definitely one of my favorite spots in Colorado.

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  1. Cottonelle Puppy’s TBEX 2012 Adventure in Photos | Solo Travel Girl - July 14, 2012

    […] Gods in Colorado SpringsAfter TBEX, I headed south to Colorado Springs and thanks to advice from Jason’s Travels, I made a quick visit to Garden of the Gods. O-M-G. This is one of the most beautiful places I have […]

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