Holiday Reset: Golden, CO’s Golden Gate Canyon State Park

Holidays are filled with fun and excitement.  They can also be overwhelming.  At least for me.  Even the ones that are all about celebrating–no crazy obligations, no gifts to buy, no ceremonies to attend, just a lot of gathering with family and friends.  It was a 4th of July frenzy for me this year.  By late morning on the the 5th of July, I was cooked, and wait, we were actually on vacation! Yes as the cliche goes, I needed a vacation from my vacation.

Lucky for me, a quick respite in the mountains was just a short drive away.  I located a state park, and we were off headed for not only a quiet hike (yes, you can have those with a toddler), but a peaceful mini road trip through a canyon inviting us to take in some of the Colorado culture as we passed ranches, trailheads, and distant peaks.

Unfortunately when we arrived at Golden Gate Canyon Park (about 30 minutes from downtown Golden), we knew we didn’t have a whole lot of time. It was already later in the morning, and we needed to get back for Bergen’s nap, and more fun that evening.  We asked the ranger at the window for a short, but sweet hike recommendation, and she was more than happy to steer us in the right direction.

Holiday Reset: Golden, CO’s Golden Gate Canyon State Park| WildTalesof.com

For a couple of pale folks with a toddler who were used to sea-level living (not mile-high) and had just a couple hours to spend, she suggested the Blue Grouse Trail: Just 1.4 miles round trip with pretty views, and shade.  

Holiday Reset: Golden, CO’s Golden Gate Canyon State Park| WildTalesof.com

Sure it was an uphill climb, and Bergen conked out and needed to be carried a lot sooner than usual (altitude doesn’t mess around), but it was exactly what we needed.  I admired wildflowers all along the trail, and Slaed kept his eye out for the perfect picnic spot where we scarfed down the tamales we’d purchased at the Farmer’s Market earlier that morning.

Holiday Reset: Golden, CO’s Golden Gate Canyon State Park| WildTalesof.com

We got to listen to the whispering of the aspen trees, Bergen had rocks galore to collect and throw, and even though we were all tired from travel and the changes in climate, we needed a good bout of exercise to refresh our bodies, and relieve a little stress.

Holiday Reset: Golden, CO’s Golden Gate Canyon State Park| WildTalesof.com

Holiday Reset: Golden, CO’s Golden Gate Canyon State Park| WildTalesof.com

Do you ever need a vacation from your vacation? What’s your favorite way to get some quiet time?

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4 thoughts on “Holiday Reset: Golden, CO’s Golden Gate Canyon State Park

    • Bergen doesn’t have hiking poles yet, Martie, but that’s definitely something we should look into! He sure loves to talk about Dad’s hiking poles–a huge help on the trail when carrying a 35-pound toddler!

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