You might cross paths with some swanky Aspen locals, or some of the town’s hardcore skiers, mountain bikers, hikers, or runners on this incredibly scenic trail run. But it’s popular for a reason: It’s downright gorgeous, any time of year, and leads into the peaceful Hunter Valley nestled above Aspen in the White River National Forest with views of the Elk Mountains when you pop out of dense aspen groves. The trailhead is just on the edge of town, making it easy to get to for anyone visiting Aspen and staying at one of the many hotels there. And the moment you begin up the Hunter Creek Trail, you’re treated to aspen trees on both sides of the smooth, buffed out trail with occasional wooden bridges. Further on, you’ll climb over some bigger rocks on your way into the valley, but around every turn there’s sheer natural beauty, and the trail never gets too steep. Run the Hunter Creek Trail to the bridge on the northwest end of the valley, then run along the other side of the creek for 1.5 miles where you’ll rejoin the main trail for a lollipop-shaped run. Or, connect to one of many trails from Hunter Creek for longer options.
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