Weekday hiking can be rough if you work a nine to five, but if you are lucky enough to live near or in Boulder then you’re in luck. In 2014, Boulder voters passed a 0.3% sales tax that generates approximately 27 million dollars of revenue a year, and Chataqua is one of the beneficiaries of that slight and temporary increase.
Chataqua Park is a beautiful park and open space and is home to some good hikes; one of my favorites is the Royal Arch trail. Little under 3.5 miles, it has some challenging elevation gain and a great view at the end, but can also be completed in only a couple of hours. It isn’t long enough that you need a camelback, just come hydrated and with a bottle of water, and maybe a snack 😉
The trailhead is off of Baseline Road, pretty much a straight shot from Highway 36. There’s a small parking lot and street parking nearby.
Autumn has some amazing views, with a fair variety of flora lining the trail, and a few chipmunks at the top. Other than the chipmunks, however, I haven’t seen any other wildlife.
Near the top, especially during the fall, you can see some great colors.
Finally, you’ll get to the arch, and realize it is well worth while.
Host to amazing views year round, Royal Arch is well worth effort.