For those of us that are staying in town lets do an early morning hike.
Length: 4 mi Round trip
Level- Moderate- there is a bit of elevation gain
Dogs- Yes they are welcome on this hike as long as well behaved and on leash
The trail takes you through a typical foothills evergreen forest that makes for shady hiking on a hot day, often Maxwell Creek runs beside the trail, other times the river is just a distant sound in the valley below.
The trail starts out, and continues, in an evergreen forest alongside Maxwell Creek. The trail does have a fair amount of incline, and gains and looses around 1,000 feet in elevation, but overall it's not a difficult hike. After about 20-25 minutes the trail reaches the top of a bluff and you come to an intersection with 4 other trails. To continue to Maxwell falls, follow the arrow and continue straight.
After the intersection the trail goes down the mountain to the creek; you will cross a bridge and then continue left alongside the river. While hiking along the river there are several places to stop and rest, let the dogs play in the water or wade yourself. Continue along the trail and it will intersect and cross the river another time, follow the signs to Maxwell Falls and the Upper Parking Lot. After about 1 hour of hiking you will reach Maxwell Falls, a large Colorado waterfall; here lots of people can be found relaxing by the water or on the rocks about the water, and it's one of the better kept hiking secrets near the Denver metro area.
Directions:I-70 and travel west to exit #252, Evergreen Parkway (Hwy 74) for 7.6 miles to the center of Evergreen where Highway 74 and Highway 73 meet. Turn right onto Highway 73 and drive about .9 of a mile to Brook Forest Road and turn right. Take Brook Forest Road for 3.5 miles to the trailhead at Lower Maxwell Falls. This is an easy parking lot to miss, there is not a sign on Brook Forest Road indicating the parking lot, therefore make note of your mileage as you turn onto Brook Forest Road and drive 3.5 miles, the trailhead is on the left or south side of the road.
If you miss this trailhead, you will see a very large damn in the river shortly up the road that you cannot miss, if you reach this damn, turn around and go back just a few tenths of a mile to the trailhead. The parking lot is small, there are no bathrooms, and there is a small overflow lot with additional trails just past the main parking lot if it's full.