The Art of Exploration · a diary of day trips, natural places, and miscellaneous adventures

Roxborough State Park

Wednesday, April 29th, 2015 in Colorado
Roxborough State Park

For some time now, I’ve been wanting to explore some of Colorado’s state parks. This afternoon, we made it you our first one—Roxborough State Park, a 4,000 acre park that lies just southwest of Denver. Despite the recent cool temperatures in the mountains and much of the Denver area, Roxborough was sweltering. Roxborough is situated at just the right orientation so as to absorb the midday sunshine to the fullest. Angled layers of sandstone soak and store the sun’s heat with great efficiency. It took us only a few minutes before we were both sweating and searching for the best escape route from the park.

The distinct red rocky outcrops you can see throughout Roxborough State Park are part of the Fountain Formation, a tilted layer of sandstone that emerged more than 300 million years ago when the ancestral Rocky Mountains started to erode.

Roxborough State Park
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Assortment

Flattop Mountain
Flattop Mountain
When I discovered that Saturday’s forecast was expected to remain clear and mild, I decide to make the most of it and to hike the Flattop Mountain Trail.
Kettle Moraine State Forest
Kettle Moraine State Forest
This past weekend I went to Kettle Moraine State Forest Southern Unit to hike the John Muir Trail.
Mesa Trail to Shanahan Ridge
Mesa Trail 1
Today, it topped sixty-five degrees for the first time in two weeks. After a morning of chores, I snuck away for the afternoon for some much-needed trail time. The late start meant I couldn’t drive far to hike, so I went to my favorite nearby standby: the Mesa Trail.