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Try Some of the Best Hikes in Colorado on Vail Mountain

Whether you start at the bottom and trek to the top or take a scenic gondola ride up and begin hiking at 10,000 feet, there are miles of Vail Mountain trails just waiting for you. Here are the best Colorado hikes you can find right at the ski resort.

A group of children walking in a grassy field near a ski lift.

Our Favorite Vail Mountain Hiking Trails

1. Berry Picker Trail

Berry Picker is one of Vail’s most popular hikes with challenging climbs and rewarding panoramas. Starting from Lionshead Village, this steep, 3.1-mile trail winds through picturesque aspens and blooming meadows. With a 2,200-foot elevation gain, this is not for the faint of heart: It’s the real deal and should be hiked with proper footwear and preparation. At the summit, you have the option to hike back down or relax and rest on the ride down the Eagle Bahn Gondola. Get more tips for riding the gondolas.

 2. Strawberry Lane to Cabin Trail

Strawberry Lane to Cabin Trail is another lovely though less traveled option out of Vail Village to the mountaintop.  The path’s 3.4 miles meander up through serene forest with stunning views of the Gore Range and the villages below. There’s a beautiful scenic bench to take a break, just shy of the 2,317 feet in elevation gain bottom to top. Once you reach the peak, celebrate your hiking victory with lunch at Mid-Vail followed by an easy ride into the village on Gondola One. Or make it a hiking round-trip and descend back down the trail to reexperience the magical vistas.

3. Ridge Route to Ptarmigan Loop

Ridge Route to Ptarmigan Loop is an easy hike conveniently located atop Vail Mountain. Take the Eagle Bahn Gondola up to Eagle’s Nest, where you will pick up the trail. The path weaves through ski runs, fields of wildflowers and shady groves until it intersects with Ptarmigan Loop after 1.4 miles. Follow the flat path for 1.2 miles to Ptarmigan Point, where at 10,977 feet, you’ll discover jaw-dropping vistas of Mount of the Holy Cross, Meadow Mountain, the Gore Range and Vail’s famous Back Bowls.

Discover more hiking adventures with our Vail Hiking Trail Map

A mother moose stands with a calf in a lush green space surrounded by pine trees in the background. Pink and purple wildflowers pepper the long grass in Vail, Colorado.

Care for Vail Mountain By Leaving No Trace

To keep our trails and outdoor spaces beautiful for future adventures, be sure to follow Leave No Trace best practices. Simple things like keeping a safe distance from wildlife and snapping Insta-worthy photos instead of picking flowers will ensure the things you loved on this trip will be there to see on your next one.

A young adult zooms towards the camera as they lead their family on a mountain biking trek through a grassy field near Vail, Colorado.

More Adventures Atop Vail Mountain

Mountain Biking & Scenic Gondola Rides

In addition to connecting you with plenty of hiking opportunities, Gondola One and the Eagle Bahn Gondola offer incredible rides with 360-degree views of Vail’s spectacular alpine backcountry. Bring along your bike on the gondola for mountain-biking trails ranging from black diamond to beginner friendly. See summer gondola hours of operation

At Eagle’s Nest

Atop Gondola One, Eagle’s Nest is a great stop for mountaintop dining and more family-friendly outdoor activities at Epic Discovery. You’ll love the Forest Flyer Mountain Coaster, Eagle’s Nest Tubing Hill, Marmot Mini Kid’s Tubing Hill, kids’ zipline, bungee trampoline, Paramount Peak Climbing Wall, Gore Creek Mini Golf and more.

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