This hike does not climb any peak. I wanted to submit however because it is probably my favorite hike in all of Colorado. This hike provides you with a nice way to explore the canyon, and soak in the spectacular views of the rugged canyon walls. . Also, the viewpoint at the top is as good as any I've seen.
The trailhead for this hike is located near the westsern edge of the canyon, right before the road narrows between two rocks. Look for signs pointing out the trailhead.
Climb up on the Fowler Trail, and then very shortly find the Rattlesnake Gulch Trail on the right (south) side. The trail switchbacks steeply up Rattlesnake Gulch on the north side of Eldorado Mountain. After about 1.25 miles and 600 ft. the trail reaches the sight of the old Crags Hotel which burned down in 1912. The view of the canyon from here is spectacular.
From the hotel, a small loop (.8 miles) continues up and over to some spectacular viewpoints. Take the loop going up to the left (east) and follow it up through the forest towards the railroad tracks. This portion of the route passes through a sort of tunnel of trees where you are nicely protected from the sun. The route continues through the trees and turns to the northwest. Along the trail here, a small trail forks off for about two hundred feet and leads to one of the best viewpoints in the entire Front Range. Follow the loop back to the hotel, and descend the way you came.
Hiking boots, sunscreen, sunglasses, and a hat. Watch for rattlesnakes. In winter the trail might be a little slick, but is usually free of snow.