Wetland Nature Trail
Arapaho National Wildlife Refuge
Date Hiked: July 13, 2014
- Distance: .7 mi (RT)
- Elevation Gain: Negligible
- Elevation: 8,085 ft
- Managing Agency: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
Arapaho NWR Website (USFWS)
Wetland Nature Trail Map (Google Maps)
Directions: From Walden, head south on Hwy 14/125. You'll enter the refuge almost immediately. Look to the left for the sign pointing to the Refuge Headquarters. Make a left onto a good dirt road and follow this until you see a sign pointing to the right with the symbol for a nature trail on it (looks like a trailhead symbol with a stick figure hiker on it). Turn right and follow the narrow dirt road until it ends at the parking area.
The Wetlands Nature Trail is a very peaceful and pleasant, short boardwalk hike through a riparian area in the heart of North Park. You'll see a variety of water fowl, wildflowers, wetlands, and if you're lucky larger wildlife such as Moose. The landscape is wonderful with views of the surrounding mountain ranges, such as the Park Range with the Zirkel Mountains, Byers Peak, and the Front Range (The Rawah Wilderness Mountains, Rocky Mt. National Park, and the Indian Peaks). If you have the time you can visit the refuge headquarters to learn more about this often overlooked portions of Colorado.