Deer Creek Canyon is a beautiful openspace in southwest Denver. It is a great place to stretch the legs and get some fresh air with out travling far from home. This post describes a route up and around plymoth mountain. There are many trails in the park you can find them here.
I hiked this route on a chilly april Saturday with my wife and our two dogs. The pictures are from hiking the trail the previous February. I would recommend hiking this in the off season, or a weekday as the trail is heavily used.
The basics of the route are
Distance: 5.5 miles – plenty of options to extend to longer
Elevation Gain: ~1300ft
Dogs: Allowed, you will encounter plenty of other pooches on a tight trail so make sure their frendly
TrailHead: The trailhead is just south of 470 & Kippling in Littleton, CO. Here are directions in Google Maps
Here is a gps track detailing the hike.
Plymouth Mtn (Dear Creek Canyon)
As you leave the parking lot you can choose to take the multi use trail marked Plymouth Creek trail to the left, or the Hiker only trail Meadow Lark trail to the right. The hiker only trail is a litle longer, it is a tight single track. The Plymouth creek trail is rockier / steeper and you will encounter a lot of bikers on the trail. It is nice and wide with plenty of room to pass.
We decided to head up plymouth creek first and return via medowlark. The trail climbs steeply for the first couple of miles. After the first mile and 400 ft of climbing you will pass the intersection with meadow lark trail. The trail soon steepens even climbing 20 or so stairs.
At about 1.5 miles you will hit an intersection with plymoth mountain trail. This is a loop with a quick side trip up to a senic overlook. The loop can be done in either direction. If you are looking to the shortest route to the top of the senic overlook continue straight at this intersection.
We chose to hike by turning left at the plymoth mountain trail. The trail has some nice views of the valey, you can even see downtown Denver on a clear day.
2/3 of the way throught the loop you will hit a 1/4 mile trail to a senic overlook. The views here are good
Overall this is a nice hike I would recommend putting it on your list.