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Echo Canyon Trail

Intermediate
 3.6 (5)

A fun trail into a pretty canyon with large cottonwood trees that provide some much-needed shade.


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Map Key

0.8

Miles

1.3

KM

Point to Point

5,077' 1,547 m

High

4,979' 1,518 m

Low

150' 46 m

Up

150' 46 m

Down

7%

Avg Grade (4°)

22%

Max Grade (12°)

Dogs No Dogs

Features Birding · Fall Colors · River/Creek · Views · Wildflowers · Wildlife

Family Friendly A short trail into a canyon that has some nice shady sections. Near the end of the canyon test out the great echo that the big red walls produce.

The Colorado National Monument is part of the National Park system. There is a fee to enter the park and dogs are not allowed on any trail.

Description

Echo Canyon Trail starts at the Devil's Kitchen parking lot in Colorado National Monument. That is a very popular area and the parking lot is known to fill at times. Instead of waiting for a space to free up, drive into Devil's Kitchen Picnic area and start the hike from there. Watch for traffic when walking along the road.

The trail starts at the south end of the parking lot along with three other trails: No Thoroughfare, Devil's Kitchen and Old Gordon. The trail is well marked with signs showing which path to follow for each of these trails. Hike Old Gordon Trail for a bit before branching off onto Echo Canyon Trail.

After a short drop downhill from the parking lot, the trail starts to climb steadily upward during the first mile. It climbs about 800ft before turning away from Old Gordon Trail. Much of this uphill part of the hike is across bare sandstone. In the spring time, you can see some nice pockets of wildflowers blooming. Cactus flowers are particularly nice to enjoyable with their bright pink, red or yellow flowers.

The trail now heads downhill and then bends right into Echo Canyon. Soon you'll be hiking through a small forest of cottonwood trees towering overhead. In spring, these trees shed tufts of white seed material that looks just like cotton. At times when the wind blows the falling "cotton" looks like a blizzard of snow. In the fall, these trees turn a pretty yellow. If you are lucky there will be water in the small creek and the sound of water trickling over rocks will add to the appeal of this quiet canyon.

The trail dips and rises over sandy hills then twists and turns through a boulder-strewn canyon.

The trail ends at a magnificent dry pour-off, where cottonwood trees again provide some cooling shade. A perfect spot to sit and enjoy a quiet snack or picnic. Of course, you might also want to give a shout to hear the great echo that bounces back from the high walls around you.

Contacts

Shared By:

Janice Shepherd

Trail Ratings

  3.6 from 5 votes

#22397

Overall
  3.6 from 5 votes
5 Star
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4 Star
60%
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1 Star
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Trail Rankings

#1,770

in Colorado

#22,397

Overall
18 Views Last Month
1,727 Since May 27, 2015
Intermediate

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Photos

A 3rd grade class enjoys a spring field trip into Echo Canyon
May 27, 2015 near Redlands, CO
A great view across the Grand Junction valley to the Bookcliff Mountains.
May 27, 2015 near Redlands, CO
It is hard to capture the huge size of the trees and the towering canyon walls with a single photo
May 27, 2015 near Redlands, CO
A prickly pear cactus with a yellow blossom.
May 27, 2015 near Redlands, CO

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Check-Ins

Oct 17, 2021
Brittney Archie
Longer hike than what is stated here. It actually starts up in the parking lot. But a great hike with stunning views. Tough but a great challenge. 3.5mi — 1h 57m
Oct 12, 2021
Randy Turner
Nov 24, 2019
Dwayne Worthy
Apr 17, 2019
Josh Hernandez
Sep 2, 2018
Tyler Hincy
Harder than you’d think ! 2.8mi
May 7, 2018
Wendi Gechter
Jul 11, 2017
Mike Hawkes
Sep 3, 2016
Josh McCarty