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Hike Mount Falcon Park and Dine at the Bear Creek Grill in Kettridge

  • Nov 30, 2013 · 10:15 AM

Driving Directions to Mount Falcon: This is the west side of Mount Falcon and not the Morrison side.
•Head west out of Denver on Highway 285;
•Take the Indian Hills turn-off from U.S. Highway 285, and follow Parmalee Gulch Road for 5 miles to Picutis Road;
•Hang a right on Picutis Road and follow the signs to the west parking area.

Hiking Distance: 4.6 + Miles (roundtrip) Depends on where you all want to go. I'm very open when it comes to this hike!

Description: There are a ton of hiking options at Jefferson County's Mount Falcon Park. I have hiked every inch of every trail in the park; the hike described here is my favorite because it provides the greatest amount of solitude, in addition to exhibiting the best large-landscape views! We'll also visit the John Brisben Walker Castle sometime during the hike.

From the west parking lot, follow the Castle Trail for .8 miles. next, hang a right on the Meadow Trail.

After .3 miles, we'll hit a trail junction; take a left onto the Old Ute Trail. From here, we can loop our way out onto the Devil's Elbow Trail. Once we complete the Devil's Elbow Loop, follow the Ute Trail back to the west.

Next, we'll want to hang a left on the Parmalee Trail. Follow this trail for 2.0 miles back to the parking area.

Worth Noting: Mount Falcon has a long and interesting history. Most of its more recent history is dominated by the influence of John Brisben Walker, the same man who was responsible for the development of the Red Rocks Amphitheater. Walker cobbled together a fortune through numerous ventures - of greatest significance were his purchase of Cosmopolitan Magazine and land speculation endeavors. He was also the owner of the Stanley Steamer Company.

John Brisben Walker owned more than 4,000 acres of land near Morrison. During the early 1900's, he built an exquisite stone house on Mount Falcon. He also had grand plans to build a summer home for U.S. presidents on the property. The construction of the Summer White House failed in its infancy, due to the fact that Walker lost his wealth while trying to construct the facility. Nonetheless, the foundation and cornerstone for the Summer White House can still be viewed on Mount Falcon to this day.

As for Walker's home, it burned down in 1918; all that remains of this century-old structure are its large stone walls (see the above photo) and numerous fireplaces. Like his house, his fortune also deteriorated by the time of his death. Walker died in 1931.

After the hike I'd like to meet you folks at the Bear Creek Grill located in Kettridge, CO. To get to the Bear Creek Grill retrace your route back to Parmalee Gulch Rd and take a right instead of a left and follow Parmalee Gulch into Kettridge where you'll see the Grill on the corner.

I hope to see you there.

Have a great day everyone!

Sincerely

Don

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  • Don

    Thanks everyone!!!

    December 2, 2013

  • Don

    The French Toast and sausage was really tasty over at the Bear Creek Restaurant. I was happy to see Lisa and Isabelle after a few years. Last time we hiked together was before I had my major knee surgery in 2010...Holly Smoke!!! But what a day!!! The folks who went on this trip made the day. Heidi it was nice to have met you!!!

    December 2, 2013

  • Kris

    Don, glad we ran into you. What time did you finish your hike?

    December 1, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Perfect hike! I wasn't last for once! However, I was red lantern to lunch. Thanks to everyone for waiting for me to get served. Enjoyed the company.

    December 1, 2013

  • Karen C.

    Great hike, and great company!

    December 1, 2013

  • Annie

    Perfect weather and I loved seeing the snow on the ground. Beautiful hike at the right pace with a fun group. Thanks!

    November 30, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    It was a beautiful day with wonderful group of people hiking easy paths. What more can I want?

    November 30, 2013

  • Carl S.

    Beautiful day and a great hike. Good food also.Thanks Don

    November 30, 2013

  • Misha

    Beautiful day and really nice people.

    November 30, 2013

  • TC

    Thank you Don for this nice hike. It was great to meet everyone. Hope to see you all soon.

    November 30, 2013

  • Lorry

    Perfect day,perfect hike. I was not able to join the group for lunch but look forward to doing so next time.

    November 30, 2013

  • Tanya

    Wonderful! Beautiful weather! Great company! Couldn't ask for anything better!

    November 30, 2013

  • Jennifer

    Excellent hike! Beautiful blue skies, wonderful people-as always! and great trails. Love Mt. Falcon. Lunch afterwards was so much fun! Thanks Don for a wonderful time!

    November 30, 2013

  • Judith

    We got behind and wound up on the wrong trail - didn't make it to the castle, but still enjoyed the hike and getting out.

    November 30, 2013

  • Tammy

    I'm bringing my loyal hiking buddy, Boof, along. See you at the trailhead!

    November 27, 2013

    • Don

      I have a feeling a Boof is the name of her dog. I certainly don't have a boof in my hiking equipment!!!

      November 30, 2013

    • Bonnie Z.

      Don are you bringing your dog?

      November 30, 2013

  • Tanya

    Misha and Judith are you still going tomorrow? I'd like to join you but I'm not sure how far I can go.

    November 29, 2013

  • Deanne

    I wont make it back in time.... Have fun!

    November 29, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    What pace are you expecting to do? I tend to be fast.

    November 27, 2013

    • Don

      We all hike at our own pace. I'm sure you'll find someone in the group who will keep up with you.

      1 · November 29, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Want to car pool anyone? I can drive or ride. I'm near I-25/Arapahoe.

    November 26, 2013

  • Misha

    Like Judith, I may also want to turn back if the group decides to do more that 4ish miles. I'm not ready to do more than that. But otherwise, sounds great.

    November 24, 2013

  • Judith

    Hi,
    I've lurked on this meetup for years. This looks like a hike I could handle, but if I needed to turn back after 1.5 miles, would that be all right? I mean, if I'm okay with going back alone, is that okay with the group?

    November 24, 2013

  • Jennifer

    I am looking forward to this hike and seeing everyone agian!

    November 23, 2013

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