Arthur’s Rock is a beautiful hike located in Lory State Park in Fort Collins, Colorado. This is one of the more popular hikes in Fort Collins due to the close proximity to town, easy to intermediate ascent, and fantastic views. Below is all the information you’ll need to get out there and have a great time.
Distance – 3.4 miles round trip (5.47 km)
Height – 6,746 feet (2,056.22 m)
Elevation gain – 1,155 feet (352.0 m)
Duration – 2 to 3 hours (book time)
Difficulty – Intermediate
Seasons – Year-round (caution and experience needed in winter – see below)
Trailhead Location – Arthur’s Rock Trailhead – Lory State Park – (directions below)
Lory State Park Trails & Map
If you want to see the Lory State Park trail map with routes and descriptions, as well as a map of the Howard Trail and other options, check it out here.. We also included an image at the bottom of this post.
Arthur’s Rock Trail: 3.4 Miles Round Trip | 1,155 Feet Elevation Gain
This is the most common route up Arthur’s Rock and begins at the Arthur’s Rock Trailhead parking (directions below). This lot is open year round, and can fit quite a number of cars.
The trail is well marked, easy to follow. Hikers begin by quickly entering a small canyon where a gorgeous small waterfall resides during certain months.
Around .5 miles in, hikers will reach the Howard Trail junction. Another route that will take you to Arthur’s Rock. Stay on the Arthur’s Rock Trail (marked by sign).
Hikers will experience switchbacks and a few relatively steep sections on this hike. During cold weather months, ice build up can occur, which is why we highly recommend bringing microspikes for traction.
Howard Trail: 4.6 Miles Round Trip
This trail is often used for hikers that want to return a different way from Arthur’s Rock summit. It is a little bit longer, but also a well traveled and easy trail to follow. This loop will be just about 4.2 miles if they decide to do both Arthur’s Rock Trail and the Howard Trail.
Howard Trail & Arthurs Rock Trail Loop | 4.2 Miles Round Trip
Many hikers choose to ascend the Arthur’s Rock Trail and descend the Howard trail to add a little mileage and change the scenery a bit.
Hiking in Winter
This is a fantastic winter hike. Though significantly less popular in winter months, it is still very well traveled. Even during warm times, the well traveled trail often results in packed down ice and snow. Winter traction is highly recommended. Microspikes are your best option here. Slipping and falling on this trail is extremely common due to the icy conditions and many unprepared hikers. A little extra traction will go a long way.
Lory State Park has plenty of Backcountry campsites, including near Arthur’s Rock. Campers will need to acquire a backcountry permit, and a parking pass to do so. More information on Lory State Park camping can be found here: https://cpw.state.co.us/placestogo/parks/Lory/Pages/Fees.aspx
Current weather conditions:
Here is the detailed weather forecast for the next few days.
Clear, with a low around 59. West wind around 7 mph.
Sunny. High near 85, with temperatures falling to around 82 in the afternoon. North northeast wind 7 to 14 mph, with gusts as high as 22 mph.
Partly cloudy, with a low around 58. North wind 5 to 10 mph, with gusts as high as 16 mph.
A chance of showers and thunderstorms after noon. Mostly sunny, with a high near 80. Northeast wind 6 to 12 mph, with gusts as high as 17 mph. Chance of precipitation is 30%.
A slight chance of showers and thunderstorms before midnight. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 55. East wind 5 to 10 mph, with gusts as high as 16 mph. Chance of precipitation is 20%.
A chance of showers and thunderstorms. Mostly sunny, with a high near 77. Chance of precipitation is 30%.
A slight chance of showers and thunderstorms before midnight. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 57. Chance of precipitation is 20%.
Directions & Parking
This trailhead is accessible year round. The road leading up to the trailhead is a well maintained dirt road within Lory State Park. This is an extremely popular hike, so parking can fill up. Hikers will need to park at the nearest parking lot if the lot is full.
Parking permits are required. Individuals can purchase day passes (Currently $8), or year passes when entering the park area. Information on this can be found on the Lory State Park website: https://cpw.state.co.us/placestogo/parks/Lory
Max DesMarais is the founder of Hiking & Fishing. He has a passion for the outdoors and making outdoor education and adventure more accessible. Max is a published author for various outdoor and marketing websites. He is an experienced hiker, backpacker, fly fisherman, trail runner, and spends his free time in the outdoors. These adventures allow him to test gear, learn new skills, and experience new places so that he can educate others. You can read more about him here: hikingandfishing/about