|Elevation Gain||436 ft|
|My Time||1 hr 2 min|
|Closest Town||Del Norte|
|Food Nearby||Carthers Roadhouse|
Hiking the Lookout Mountain Loop In Del Norte, Co
If you have ever been around the Del Norte, Colorado area and saw the big hill with a letter D on it you were looking at Lookout Mountain. The mountain sits just outside of downtown and can be from a long away out as you drive into the town center. I found out that you can actually hike the Lookout Mountain Loop in Del Norte and it is a really enjoyable hike.
The Lookout Mountain Loop starts just a few blocks from downtown Del Norte. There is a parking lot for about 10 cars that leads to the start of the hike. The loop can go either way but I chose to head counter clockwise and to the right which led to the elevation earlier in the hike. This also is the quicker way to the summit but I was headed on the loop trail.
The nearly 3 mile loop traverses up and down Lookout Mountain. Most of the elevation gain starts early on the counter clockwise loop. There were a couple spots of inclines up to a 15% grade but mostly the inclines are steady. There is a path that takes you up to the peak of the mountain. I ended up missing that trail and getting a bit lost trying to follow the loop around and did a bit of backtracking. That added to some additional elevation but also some of the best views.
One of the first views that see on the hike is the town of Del Norte. As you ascend the trail the town comes into full focus and it is a very cool perspective! As you circle around the trail you can see some of the surrounding businesses and agriculture but this first ascent really shows off the town.
As you continue around the loop to the north and west and gain some elevation, more an more of the surrounding landscapes come into view. There are a series of buttes and hills that lead to some taller peaks in the distance. It is really some lovely landscape that surrounds the town, especially as seen from these higher heights.
Round and Round
The loop trail descends back down to ground level on the western and southern sections of the trail. There are still some nice views of the surrounding area and looking back towards the Lookout Mountain. However, from here the trail stays relatively flat around the outer edge of the property before circling back to complete the loop.
I really enjoyed the time I spend hiking around Lookout Mountain. I was on a road-trip and it was the perfect break to get out of the car and stretch my legs a bit. The views are fantastic and I think next time I will head for the peak of Lookout Mountain in Del Norte.
Video of hiking the Lookout Mountain Loop in Del Norte
I have put this time-lapse video together of hiking the Lookout Mountain loop in Del Norte so other hikers can get a feel of what the hike is like. If you enjoy this video make sure to subscribe to my YouTube channel. It is free to subscribe and you will get the latest outdoor content.
Distance and Elevation
If you don’t have the AllTrails app you might want to check it out, I really love mine. It records your progress and is a great way to search for hikes that are nearby and gives you difficulty measurements. According to AllTrails today’s hike was around 2.84 miles and had a total elevation gain of about 436 feet including undulations. That put the high point at around 8,252 feet. I was also moving for a total of 1 hour and 2 minutes.
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This wasn’t a super challenging hike but there were a couple of things that made me take it from an easy to moderate hike. There is a bit of elevation at just over 400 feet and it comes mostly all at once. That could become challenging for some. The hike is also completely exposed so weather can be a factor that could also make a bit of a challenge for some. Overall, I will set it as moderate but it will probably be easier for some.
The trail around Lookout Mountain in Del Norte is somewhat narrow at times and hard packed dirt. I found a couple of places where the trail got a little hard to follow as someone who did it for the first time. You may want to check the map at the beginning of the hike to make sure you know which route you want to take.
The parking for the Lookout Mountain Trail Loop is located at the southern end of Spruce Street just at the edge of the town of Del Norte. There is room for about 10 cars in the lot and there are no restrooms available.
Wrapping up the Lookout Mountain Loop in Del Norte
The Lookout Mountain Loop in Del Norte was a really enjoyable hike. I don’t know much about the area so it was great to get a view at a higher elevation. The views of the town and surrounding areas were really nice. The loop isn’t too challenging but a great way to get the blood flowing. I loved doing this as a bit of a break on a long drive and really enjoy the town of Del Norte.
On a personal note, the Lookout Mountain Loop in Del Norte is located in Rio Grande County, Colorado. Rio Grande county is the 40th out of 64 counties that I have hiked in on my quest to hike in every county of Colorado. A wonderful state to hike in all across the state! I hope to see it all!
I have added this hike and all of my hikes to the interactive map page you can find here. If you have any suggestions for hikes or comments feel free to email me at email@example.com or you can follow me on any of the below social media platforms. Happy Hiking!