The Rocky Mountains of Vail offer some of the most spectacular wildflower viewing options! Depending on conditions, peak viewing is typically in July, but wildflowers can be found June – October if you know where to go! Our top suggestions are below:
Nature Discovery Center
Join a Naturalist for a free gentle educational hike through the forest atop Vail Mountain at the Nature Discovery Center. Learn about the ecology and animal adaptations of this mountain environment. Come prepared to spend an hour outside with appropriate clothing, hiking shoes and water. Most ages and abilities, FREE. No reservation required, just show up in the summer months.
Vail Pass/Shrine Ridge
Shrine Ridge Trail off of Vail Pass is a family-friendly 4.4-mile roundtrip hike that takes hikers across meadows, pine forests and eventually to the top of Shrine Mountain. The high elevation trail is best used in mid-to-late summer when it boasts fields of wildflowers. Colors of yellow, pink and purple flowers pop against the landscape and complement the expansive views from Shrine Ridge.
Gore Creek Trail
Located on the east end of Vail Valley, the 7.3-mile Gore Creek Trail immerses hikers into alpine splendor in the Eagles Nest Wilderness. The trail is named after the creek it climbs alongside, which is the same creek that runs through Vail Village. After winding through the forest, the trail opens up to meadows filled with wildflowers. Those interested in a challenge can continue straight ahead to Red Buffalo Pass or take the difficult trail up to Gore Lake.
Betty Ford Alpine Gardens
The Betty Ford Alpine Gardens, located at Ford Park, just east of Vail Village, is the highest botanical gardens in the world with a unique collection of alpine, sub-alpine and other mountain plants and flowers. This easy stroll is an excellent place to easily experience incredible wildflowers and more!