Pets allowed
Elevation Gain
206.00 ft (62.79 m)
Trail type
2.00 mi (3.22 km)
Please respect the outdoors by practicing Leave No Trace. Learn more about how to apply the principles of Leave No Trace on your next outdoor adventure here.

The Central Garden, Palmer Trail, and Scottsman Trail Loop is a short hike located at the Garden of the Gods near Colorado Springs, Colorado. This trail . This loop is 2 miles long and gains 206 feet of elevation. 

This hike starts from the main parking lot. There are bathrooms available at the trailhead. Begin hiking south. Walk past towering rock formations. The Kissing Camels rock formation can be seen here. After 0.2 miles, you will turn right onto Central Garden Trail and pass between North and South Gateway Rock. Continue north on Central Garden Trail and enjoy another view of Kissing Camels and the Tower of Babylon. After another 0.2 miles, you will come to a junction and stay left. After 0.2 more miles, turn right and cross the road. The turn left onto Palmer Trail after 0.1 miles. Hike through small trees and shrubs as you take in views of the towering red rocks.

Stay on the Palmer Trail for 0.5 miles before crossing the road and continuing on Scottsman Trail. You will walk around The Scottsman rock formation and head north. After 0.3 miles, you will come to a junction and go left. After another 0.1 miles, you will cross the road and encounter 5 junctions. Stay left at the first 3 junctions and right at the last 2. You will now hike between Three Graces and Pulpit Rock. After another 0.2 miles, you will turn right and pass between North and South Gateway Rock. Follow the trail north to return to the trailhead.

Garden of the Gods is open for hiking from 5am-9pm in the winter (November 1 - April 30) and from 5am-10pm in the summer (May 1 - October 31). There are no associated fees to hike here. Dogs are allowed on this trail. 

Logistics + Planning

Preferable season(s)




Parking Pass


Open Year-round



Rock Formations.



Trailhead Elevation

6,453.00 ft (1,966.87 m)

Highest point

6,491.00 ft (1,978.46 m)


Flushing toilets

Typically multi-day


Permit required




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