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father and son touching the waterfall at Hanging Lake in Glenwood Springs, ColoradoColorado is a nature-lover’s paradise, and hiking is a wonderful way to take pleasure in the outdoors while you have an infant along with you. Throngs of tourists pack into Aspen and Vail to ski and snowboard in the winter, but others head to Glenwood Springs in the spring and fall to walk, climb and bike the wonderful trails in Glenwood Canyon.

Hanging Lake Trail is a popular way to spend a sunny afternoon in Glenwood Springs. Lots of parents tackle this difficult trail with little ones in carriers, and so can you. So tell baby to wave adorably to the other adventurers as they pass you by! You begin this trek on a paved walkway which leads away from the parking lot and toward several towering cliff faces. Keep an eye open for a little break in the trees that opens to reveal the beginning of the trail—a steep, rock-filled path.

After about a tenth of a mile the trail evens out a bit and although there will be many spots where you need to negotiate your way up and over the rocks, past large tree roots and around boulders, you can enjoy meandering through the dirt trail with your little one in tow. The beauty of this Colorado hiking experience is still a ways to go.

Be prepared

Your baby will enjoy the view and be soothed while you do all the hard work! A trail that is only a mile and a half long may not seem daunting, but remember that you are also hiking up. Come in hiking gear, bring lots of water and grab a walking stick if you are feeling fancy. Don’t forget your camera, because there are plenty of places to stop and get snapshots of your extremely photogenic child along the way.

Bask in your achievement

Once you tackle the steep, rocky path, the visual reward will be well worth the effort it took to get there. The Hanging Lake is suspended on the edge of one of Glenwood Canyon’s cliffs and is a stunning sight to see. Encourage your little one to peer into the still, aquamarine waters and spy the little fish. Take him or her all the way around the little boardwalk and over some rocks to where the waterfalls are. Little hands can reach over and feel the cool water while looking for rainbows.

Itwo kids sitting on the trail at Hanging Lake in Glenwood Springs, Coloradof Hanging Lake isn’t enough to sate your thirst for beauty or you simply want a good place to sit for a while, follow the short trail up to Spouting Rock where water from the melting snow shoots through the limestone and creates a lovely little waterfall. Walk up to it, walk behind it or simply perch your family on a rock below it—the perfect spot to rest and tuck into a picnic lunch.

Take this Colorado hiking challenge

Hanging Lake Trail is enjoyed by people of all ages and fitness levels, but understand before you go that it will be a challenge. Set aside a few hours to experience it, and be sure to pack extra supplies for baby. This is a local favorite and can get crowded, so if you would prefer to enjoy it without all the hustle and bustle of other people trying to find an epic Colorado hiking adventure, try to get out and tackle the trail on a weekday. No matter what time of year or day of the week you go, Hanging Lake Trail is an ideal way to get your baby some fresh air and spend an active afternoon as a family.

There is so much to do in Glenwood Springs, Colorado it might make your head spin. The Hot Springs Pool attracts vacationers young and old, the massive, jagged mountains are everywhere you look and the quaint little town is the perfect place to spend an afternoon strolling. If adventure is what you are after, you can go biking, ride a segway, explore on horseback, go rafting, paragliding or even ride a roller coaster—which is uniquely situated on the top of a mountain. If you are on the hunt for an adventurous day with your infant, however, Hanging Lake trail is best for you.

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Shauna Armitage

Author Shauna Armitage

Shauna Armitage is a military spouse, mother of four, lover of Coca-Cola, and host of the Startup Renegades podcast, a raw conversation with powerhouse founders building amazing businesses. While Shauna is a marketer by trade, she is a traveler by choice and loves to explore the world with her family in tow. Connect with her on Instagram @shaunajarmitage

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