Buena Vista, US
12:31 am, June 7, 2023

The Best Hiking Trails Buena Vista CO

Collegiate Peaks Wilderness Area


Fresh air, blue skies and a true Colorado experience awaits you in our Rocky Mountains and 80% public lands. Buena Vista Chamber of Commerce is renowned for its Collegiate Peaks Wilderness Area with its 165,864 acres, much of which lies within the San Isabel National Forest. This wilderness area holds a collection of Sawatch Range Mountains and is set in the Buena Vista valley. The Sawatch Range contains some of Colorado’s highest peaks and provides magnificent views that inspire both visitors and local residents every day. Many of these peaks are named after universities, such as Mount Princeton, Mount Columbia, Mount Harvard and Mount Yale, earning the title “Collegiate Peaks”.  Enjoy this book “Hiking Buena Vista, CO.”  Below on this page are trail instructions for eleven of our most popular hikes!



Sometimes you’ll hear the Collegiate Peaks called “fourteeners” which is a reference to the mountains that have an elevation of at least 14,000 feet. Buena Vista is a popular area for mountaineering, especially since Chaffee County the highest concentration of fourteeners in Colorado. In fact, there are 12 fourteeners in our county all within an easy distance from Buena Vista.  For more information consider this book “The Colorado Fourteeners.”

Summiting a fourteener is a noteworthy feat, and many travels to Buena Vista just to attain their very own mountaintop experience. 

Enjoy our hiking trails Buena Vista CO at Buena Vista Chamber of Commerce. 

For information on hiking a fourteener visit www.fourteenernet.com/fourteeners

Abundance of Hiking Trails

If advanced mountaineering isn’t your aim, numerous beginner and intermediate hikes are available in the Buena Vista area and serve as great family options. These hikes offer stunning views of the Collegiate Peaks. The many lakes near Buena Vista also offer beautiful hiking destinations, such as Ptarmigan Lake, Hartenstein Lake, Clear Creek Reservoir, and Twin Lakes. You can even hike the amazing trails at the end of East Main Street in downtown Buena Vista, such as the Arkansas River Trail or the Midland Trail; both are good options for families and those who don’t want to trek far out of town.  They offer amazing views of the Collegiate Peaks and the Arkansas River. Purchase a copy of “Hiking in Buena Vista” book for your own variety of hiking trails.  Please see a variety of hikes below.  

Visit Buena Vista Chamber of Commerce for more updates. Contact us now! 

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The Colorado Trail is accessible from different spots within our area.  Check out the State’s Colorado Trail Explorer website for more information on the Colorado Trail.

No matter the trail difficulty level, hiking in Buena Vista can be challenging at first because of the high altitude. But with proper hydration, nutrition, gear and attire, you’ll be ready for a fun adventure in the Colorado Rockies.