Clear Creek Closed to Recreation by High Water? Who Cares? There’s So Much to Do in Golden, Colorado!

Due to high spring runoff water, swimming, tubing or using any kind of inflatable single chambered raft is often temporarily prohibited on Clear Creek in Golden and Jefferson County. 

But that shouldn’t stop you from coming to Golden. Most people enjoy looking at or walking alongside the creek and skip the on-the-water activities anyway. Plus, you can still hike or bike along the Clear Creek Trail, crossing the river several times on bridges as you climb up into the canyon.  Or you can have lunch creek side at picnic tables or an outdoor café, relaxing to the pleasant sound of a rushing river. No need to get wet to enjoy Clear Creek!

Regardless of the creek status, there are so many reasons to visit Golden during the early summer, including:

  1. The foothills look like Ireland!  With all the springtime rain, the rolling foothills and buttes of North and South Table Mountain are especially verdant in early summer. Golden has numerous hiking trails crossing through the green foliage and wildflowers. It’s a beautiful time to experience the trails around Golden. Kid in Mines Museum

  2. “Museum Hop” and soak in the city’s culture! Golden is home to a thriving arts and culture scene. It’s easy to “museum hop,” with the Golden History Museum & Park, the American Mountaineering Museum, the Mines Museum (pictured right, photo by @littleradadventure), Foothills Arts Center (temporarily closed this summer) and Miners Alley Playhouse all within an easy walk from one another. Only a short drive away: Colorado Railroad Museum, Dinosaur Ridge, the Rocky Mountain Quilt Museum and Lookout Mountain Nature Preserve.

  3. Go up Lookout Mountain, the easy way…or the hard way! The views from the summit of this peak overlooking Golden are simply spectacular in the spring, taking in snowcapped peaks to the west, the Flatirons of Boulder to the north, and the high green plains stretching out to Denver in the east. The easy way is driving to the top on the Lariat Loop Trail, one of Colorado’s premiere scenic drives making 51 curves as it snakes its way up to the summit. Or if your legs can take it, you can bike the iconic 5-mile road to the top, one of the most challenging bike routes in the state. You can even hike to the summit on a beautiful trail through evergreens, starting from the bottom or from the Windy Saddle Trailhead half way up.

  4. Walk this way! The pleasant early summer weather makes for an ideal time to go on a walking tour of Golden. Free, self-guide options include the Public Art Walking Tour, Itty, Bitty Art Tour or the Golden History Museum’s History Walking Tour. For the art tours, you can pick up a free map at the Golden Visitors Center. For the History Tour, CLICK HERE.

  5. Gear up for summer adventures.  Golden is the outdoor recreation capital of the Front Range with specialty shops for fly fishing, rock climbing, hiking, biking, backpacking and every other outdoor recreation sport. It’s the perfect place to shop and plan your summer adventures and with so much recreation in and nearby Golden, you can gear up and hit the trails imTributary Patiomediately!

  6. Have lunch or dinner with mountain views.  Golden sits in Clear Creek Valley, completely surrounded by mountains and high buttes, so no matter what direction you look, there are Western mountain views.  And right now, those views are as green as they will ever be!  Most of Golden’s more than two dozen restaurants have outdoor tables.  So whatever you feel like eating – casual burgers, pizza, Mexican, BBQ, or more exotic Thai, Nepalese, Middle Eastern, Cajun, or Vietnamese … it’s all in Golden in a beautiful setting.

Don’t’ let a creek closure put a damper on your visit! Be safe and enjoy Golden without getting wet.