Take a hike. Have a beer. This is the Colorado lifestyle. Nothing beats polishing off a hike with a local brew, and no one does it better than the Front Range crowd.
Here is our go-to list of quick day hikes that are a short distance from one of Colorado’s must-visit breweries. Hit the trail, grab a brew, tip your bartender. That’s what we call a full day.
Galbraith Park is one of our favorite quick hikes near Denver, offering some moderate climbs, occasional wildlife, and opportunities to hike short or long. There is something for everyone on this relatively painless hike. Cannonball Creek Brewing Company sits in the shadow of Mt. Galbraith Park, so there is no excuse not to stop for a brew. They have abundant indoor/outdoor seating, and a great staff. Check out our Cannonball favorite, the Brickyard Porter.
Chocked full with 18 trails, there is quite literally a hike for everyone at Aldferfer and Three Sisters. Difficulty is easy throughout most of the park, but you can easily create a loop over 10 miles for a solid day hike. Driving distance from Denver is only 40 minutes, and any excuse to visit Evergreen is a good excuse. Lariat Lodge Brewing offers a great selection of brews, but also offers some excellent post-hike comfort food. We recommend the Lair O’ the Bear Irish Red Ale (on nitro).
Do the Sanitas double! A climb up Mt. Sanitas is short and gnarly, but the effort is rewarded with fantastic views of Boulder. You can do a quick up and down, or connect to several other trails for a longer trip. Sanitas Brewing Company is just off of Pearl on Frontier Ave, and has a neat industrial-style taproom with abundant outdoor seating when the weather is nice. We recommend washing down one of their tacos with an Oso Grande (if it’s available).
Whether it be snowshoeing in the winter, or hiking in the summer, St. Mary’s Glacier offers year-round trail bliss. You can do a quick 1.5 miles round-trip to the top, or take a more adventuresome journey up James Peak. It’s about an hour drive from Denver due to the slowly-winding road up, but the views are well worth the drive. Bonus: the short hike allows ample time for exploring the extensive beer menu at Tommyknocker Brewery. You’ve seen it a hundred times as you drove past on I-70, this is the time that you stop! We recommend the Imperial Nut Brown Ale, and don’t leave without learning what a Tommyknocker is.
This is the most pedestrian and dog-friendly option on the list. If you’re looking for a paved path to push a stroller, or just want to get a quick run in, Chatfield State Park is hard to beat for flat and fast. Chatfield has great views and the wetlands make it hard to beat for bird watching. Living the Dream Brewing Co. is just across the canal from Chatfield, and a great post-hike watering hole. Bonus: If you want to bring Fido along for the hike, they’re welcome at Living the Dream as well. Tip: if you like to avoid the post-beer bloat, they have several reduced-gluten options.