Staunton State Park – Pine, CO – Mason Creek and Staunton Ranch Trail Loop

Staunton State Park - Pine, CO - Mason Creek and Staunton Ranch Trail Loop - eagle cliffs overlook

The Staunton State Park is a hiking paradise, located in Pine Colorado. The hiking trails are easy enough for beginners and are filled with wildlife to keep hiking enthusiasts interested. Some of the many things you can do at this state park include day hiking, camping, fishing, biking on mountain bike trails – there’s even horseback riding available!

The hiking trails here are extensive and hikers can choose from a variety of hikes depending on their skill level. If you’re looking for short day hike to take with your family, there is no shortage of options at the Staunton State Park!

Staunton State Park is Colorado’s newest state park! They charge a $10 per vehicle entry fee, or you can purchase a yearly pass if you are a Colorado resident. There is plenty of parking at the trailhead as well as some ponds for fishing near the entrance.

The park is a vast, wild landscape that ranges from low grasslands to lofty granite cliffs. The variety of terrain and features within the 2,000-foot elevation gradient have resulted in an abundance of vegetation communities with animals living there as well!

We took the Mason Creek and Staunton Ranch Trail loop counter clockwise. The trail was mostly dirt and fairly smooth to begin with, but became more rock as we got on to saw mill road.

Deer were everywhere early in the morning. We arrived just after the sunrise and were lucky enough to spot multiple does along the trail in various spots. We even saw one laying down!

Staunton boasts a variety of vegetation and trees including:

  • Wildflowers
  • Ponderosa Pine
  • Douglas-Fir
  • Lodgepole Pine
  • Englemann Spruce
  • Limber Pine
  • Aspen

You can find The Old Mill Site located about 2.5 miles from the Ranch Hand Picnic Area in Staunton State Park, which leads through mixed forests and open space to an old sawmill constructed back during colonial times – it’s structures are all that remain today after they were abandoned over one hundred years ago due too changes within industry standards. The Old Mill Road portion of the hike has the most incline if you go clockwise like we did.

Staunton State Park - Pine, CO - Mason Creek and Staunton Ranch Trail Loop - sawmill sign

We took the Bear Paw trail which adds three lookout points to the trip. Eagle Cliffs Overlook is the coolest. If we did it again we would take Bear Paw to Eagle Cliffs and then backtrack to Mason Creek Trail to save some time. However, if it is your first time out you should do the entire Bear Paw trail because the other lookouts are still great, and there are some cool parts of the trail where it is all smooth rock. There is a sign that says “technical trail” prior to this segment. There is a bypass for the technical part as well. I wouldn’t even consider it a scramble so you should go for it.

There are many area in this state park to go climbing. We saw multiple groups out there with ropes and gear doing work! There are also many small streams running through the park.

There is a whole other side of the state park that we did not make it to on this trip. Stay tuned for that later!

Distance7 Miles (We did a bit more!)
DifficultyModerate
Duration4.5 Hours
Trail TypeLoop
Elevation Gain1204
Peak Elevation9,509
Trailhead Locationhttps://goo.gl/maps/g1dCs7X7ppdN91kY9
ParkingLot With Bathrooms
Town Nearest HikePine, Colorado
FeeState Park Entrance Fee
Date Hiked9/11/21
Mason Creek and Staunton Ranch Trail Loop Facts

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