Why we love it: It is a history lesson and a get-out-of-the-house opportunity in one.

When to go: Go during mud season when much of the High Country is just too soaked for solid hiking. This trek is more likely to have dried up early in the season. (Throw your Yaktraxs in your CamelBak backpack, just in case.)


You can’t blame a fellow for dreaming, right? That’s how we feel about John Brisben Walker, who tried to build a summer home for the U.S. President right here in the Centennial State. He even went so far as to collect dimes from kids to do so. Alas, the memento from his failed scheme is an etched marble cornerstone from 1911 perched high in Jefferson County Open Space.

You can reach the marble block today by a fast hike in Mount Falcon Park (Castle Trail to Walker’s Dream Trail). The trail is ultra-wide, ensuring that you can amble next to your hiking partners. The bad news? That also means there are plenty of bikes on the trail, too. Just be alert, and everyone can share the trail. Make sure to bring the camera, as you’ll keep busy taking shots of the ruins, the Denver skyline, and Red Rocks’ monoliths. The views are grand enough to feel, well, presidential.


Getting there: Head west on U.S. 285 south to Parmalee Gulch Road. Head right and follow to Picutis Road. Continue following the signs for Mount Falcon Park.

Follow senior editor Natasha Gardner on Twitter at @natashajgardner or on Pinterest.