Elk in Rocky Mountain National Park
 
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Devil's Backbone Open Space

Red-tailed hawks soaring above, grasslands carpeted with wildflowers, towering rock formations - these are just some of the natural features to be enjoyed at the 2,198-acre Devil's Backbone Open Space. Its 12 miles of trail connect to Rimrock Open Space and Horsetooth Mountain Open Space for hiking, running, horseback riding, mountain biking, wildlife viewing, observing nature, as well as enjoying close-up inspection of the rock outcrop and long vistas.

Devil's Backbone Open Space trail system [Photo: Scott Bacon] Long's Peak and Mt. Meeker looming over the Backbone [Photo: Open Lands Staff] A volunteer naturalist led hike at the Backbone [Photo: Rick Price] Heading out [Photo by Sue Burke] At the Keyhole [Photo by Charlie Johnson] Biking the trails [Photo by Kelley Savage] Horseback riding at the Backbone [Photo by Judy Swenson] Dog's day out [Photo by Walt Hubis]

The Devil's Backbone itself is one of the most impressive and visible geologic landmarks in Larimer County, as well as an important cultural feature with a rich and colorful history.

Drinking water is available at the trailhead. Please carry enough for your hike or ride. This open space is popular. If you arrive to a full parking lot, that means trails are at maximum capacity. Please consider a different open space for the day and come back another time.

Devil's Backbone Open Space is open from dawn to dusk, has no entrance fee, and is located west of Loveland, Colorado.

General Regulations

For specifics, ask a ranger for a copy of the Regulations Brochure.
  • Rock is unstable. Rock climbing not allowed.
  • Day use only. Closed sunset to sunrise.
  • The "dusk-to-dawn" gate at the trailhead opens and closes at sunset - please time your hike/ride accordingly.
  • Pets must be kept on a leash at all times.
  • Stay on the trail to avoid and not disturb wildlife, including rattlesnakes.
  • Firearms, fires, fireworks, hunting and trapping are prohibited.
  • Bike riders - Control your speed at all times and remember trail courtesy. Bikers yield to everyone.

Directions

Trails

Management Plan

Future Vision

Property Acquisition Information

Background Image: Rocky Mountain National Park by Sue Burke. All rights reserved.