Cherry Creek State Park, tucked into the metro area southeast of downtown Denver, offers 4,000 acres of park and several miles of hiking trails around an 880 surface-acre reservoir less than a half-hour drive from downtown. The park sees annual visitation approaching 1.7 million, and with trails like the Wetland Loop, it’s easy to see why.
The Wetland Loop Trail Hike offers a thoroughfare through serene wetland and grassland that, despite their proximity to Denver, have the feel of a remote wilderness oasis. Traversing wooden-plank boardwalks through tall grasses, milkweed, poppy, thistle, and groves of cottonwood, the Wetland Loop Trail clocks in at a short 1.8 miles and with little to no elevation gain. Just one segment in a long trail network that spans Cherry Creek State Park’s acreage, it can be combined with other segments in the park to extend the hike. The trail is optimal for children and families seeking to add an activity to Cherry Creek State Park’s already diverse offerings. Keep an eye out for wetland wildlife, including the gray catbird.
The trail is just one of the many activities available at Cherry Creek State Park. Incorporate the hike into a day that includes the miniature hobbyist airfield at Suhaka Field or the shooting ranges at the Family Shooting Center, open water activities at Cherry Creek Reservoir, and camping at Cherry Creek State Park Campground.