Lion’s Lair Trail

4.4 Miles / 746 ft. Elevation Gain

Quick Info

4.4 Miles
Route Type:
Out & Back
Trail Head:
Lion's Lair
Elevation Climb:
746 Feet
Amount of Shade
Some Shade
View Rating
4.5 Stars

Slide Show

Am I the only one who didn’t know there’s a back way up to Mount Sanitas that is so much easier than the traditional front of mountain path I’ve always done?! Lion’s Lair trail is a beautiful winding path that starts just a few miles past the Mount Sanitas trailhead and this is my new favorite way to climb Mount Sanitas!

There’s not a traditional parking lot, so parking is limited but that also means the trail is much less crowded. The switchbacks bring you through the trees at a pretty steady incline, but with just over two miles to go 800 ft up it never feels too steep. Plus, the views come into play pretty quickly and they’re gorgeous! From snowcapped mountains to the incredibly cool homes you can look down on, they makes the trail go by fast.

When I picked Lion’s Lair, I had no idea it ended at Mount Sanitas until I saw the signs. You spend most of the trail on the back half of the mountain, before winding your way around to see the views of the foothills, Boulder and all the way to Denver! We enjoyed some time at the top before making our way back down.

If you have friends or family who want to climb Mount Sanitas but are intimidated by the front trail (rightfully so, it kicks my butt every time!) take them this route. All of the views without the incredibly steep mile climb to the top. Enjoy!

Sorry dog lovers, no dogs on this trail!


Slide Show

Author of Approachable Outdoors Kylie Bearse

Kylie Bearse

When I'm not exploring the trails, I'm a Meteorologist! You can see me weekend mornings on NBC affiliate 9News in Colorado. Have a weather question? Don’t hesitate to ask!

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