Returns to Carson's Travels Home Page Read List of Colorado Newsletters View Our Photo Gallery View Colorado Map How to Contact Us

Garden of the GodsWithin a few minutes drive from Colorado Springs is the town of Manitou Springs. This is home to several fantastic natural attractions, including Pikes Peak, Garden of the Gods and Seven Falls.

Garden of the Gods is a 1350 acre park with magnificent red sandstone rock formations, many of them over 300 million years old. The park was dedicated in 1909 and is free to the public. There is a visitor center where a multi-media presentation explains how the red rocks were formed.Central Garden Trail You can drive around the park and see most of the formations, but one of the best ways to get up close and personal with the rocks is to walk the Central Garden Trail. The 1-1/2 mile loop takes you past 18 of the formations with names such as Kissing Camels, Twin Spries and Sleeping Giant.Barb by Three Graces


Fred holds up Balanced Rock









Fred by cog trainOne of the most famous attractions in the area is Pike's Peak. At an altitude of 14,100 feet, it can literally take your breath away!Carsons on the Summit We decided to take the Cog Railway to the summit. It is the world's highest cog railway and takes over an hour to reach the summit. While an easy way to get to the top, it was not as scenic as we had expected. The train travels almost straight up the mountain, thru dense forests until almost to the top where the scenery changes to rock strewn hillsides and then the alpine tundra. Rocky Mtn Big Horned SheepWe did see a herd of Rocky Mountain Big-horned Sheep and a few Yellow-bellied Marmots sunning themselves on the granite boulders.Carsons enjoy the view. We were fortunate to have a mostly clear day so we could see down to Colorado Springs. Next time though we'd like to try the 19 mile windy drive to the top. Think we'll pass on the hiking trail to the top!



Seven Falls

Another less famous attraction is Seven Falls. This is a 181 foot waterfall that cascades down in seven distinct steps. View from top of FallsThere is an elevator which takes you to an overlook of the fall.








Or you can climb the 224 stairs to the top of the falls.224 stairs to the topAlso at the top are several hiking trails. One takes you to a small falls called Midnight Falls.Inspiration Point ViewThe other takes you out to Inspiration Point with a great view of the city. Buried at Inspiration Point is Helen Hunt Jackson, author of the famous book Ramona.





Barbara finds a geocacheWe have taken up a new hobby - geocaching. There is a web site at where you can find latitude and longitude for thousands of treasure boxes that have been hidden around the country. You then use a hand held GPS to hone in on the location of the treasure. Many are along hiking trails. We hiked the Paul Intemann trail in Manitou Springs where we found 3 caches. View of Garden of Gods from trailThe trail ran along a ridge that looked down on Colorado Springs and the Garden of the Gods. By the way, the treasure boxes usually contain small trinkets, toys, etc. The idea is if you take something out, you leave something else. It's not the treasure that's important, it's the hunt. And we are finding it's a great way to explore an area and see spots we would not have gone to if it were not for the treasure there.



To view more photos from this area click here: Colorado Springs Photo Gallery

Prior to visiting Colorado Springs, we spent a few days in Canon City and visited the Royal Gorge area. It is only about an hours drive from Colorado Springs and well worth a visit. To view information about Royal Gorge click here: Royal Gorge.


Home Location Descriptions Photos Map Contact Us