Mueller State Park in Teller County, Colorado is a magnificent 5,121 acre park just south of Divide, Colorado. Just about a 35 mile drive from Colorado Springs, Mueller State Park offers 55 miles of hiking trails suitable for walking, running, cycling, and horseback riding. Hunting and year-round camping is also a feature.
Mueller State Park is open from 5AM to 10PM every day. It's filled with springs, meadows, ridges, granite rocks, and ponds. It is northwest of Pikes Peak, at the foothills.
You'll find lots of aspen trees, as well as spruce, pine, and fir trees. Things you can do here including walking, running, hiking, cycling, horseback riding, picnicing, camping, and fishing.
There are 36 miles of trail for mountain biking. The trails are very hilly, so don't expect easy cycling.
The elevation at Mueller State Park is 9,396 feet, so if you are having trouble breathing from the higher elevation, Colorado Springs sells those oxygen tanks. You can get them anywhere actually, including online, so if you think you might have an issue with less oxygen, pick one up!
I don't actually recommend buying these oxygen tanks until you are in Colorado, as you can't take these on an airplane. You can buy these at any Walmart or gas station anyway, but you can at least read about them and see if you might want to pick one up once you arrive in Colorado.
The Visitor Center
The Visitor Center is one of the first things you'll see as you enter the park. If you want to learn more about Mueller State Park, you should stop in and grab some flyers or take a look at the taxidermy and historical items:
Also check out the gift shop in the visitor center. They've got some fun looking items!
Also in the Visitor Center is a list of park observations, or animal sightings:
Mueller State Park Map
Note: the Mueller State Park Map above is a full size image, so click on it to get a bigger image you can look at. As you can see, there is plenty to see and do here!
Grouse Mountain Trailhead Hiking
Grouse Mountain Trailhead is at the north end of Mueller State Park. If you take the paved road all the way to the end where it loops, you'll come to the trailhead.
There are a few different forks you can take once you start on the trail. Notable sights include:
There is literally too much to explore to cover everything in one article about Mueller National Park. You need to visit several times just to get an overview, it's great!
Family/Kid Friendly Trails in Mueller State Park
Following are some trails that are family friendly/kid friendly. These are all shorter trails, ranging anywhere from a half a mile to 3.5 mile total.
Dragonfly Children's Nature Trail - Wheelchair accessible
There are interactive stations on this trail for the kids, and I guess adults too, so you get to learn and hike. There's a pond also. It's right inside the entrance.
Trail #2 - School Pond
(1.6 miles round trip)
No fishing at this pond. There is a trail split shortly after the trailhead, where you can loop around the pond.
Trail #6 - Wapiti Self-Guided Nature Trail
(0.8 mile round trip)
Located at the east end of the Visitor's Center parking lot, where you can get a self-guided flyer at station 1.
Trail #7 Outlook Ridge to Trail #8 Raven Ridge Overlook
(1.4 miles round-trip)
This is a classic trail in the park that you have to try at least once. Raven Ridge Overlook gets its name because it's an awesome viewpoint, with granite rock outcroppings.
Trail #11 - Lost Pond
(0.8 mile round-trip)
Great pond views in a valley! Lots of wildflowers here.
Trail #12 - Homestead Trail to Black Bear Loop
This one goes through a forest and through meadows, so some partial shade along the trail. Hike on the Homestead Trail, 1.1 miles to Black Bear Trail #13, then a right on Trail #13. You will continue to Trail #1 which loops you back to the beginning of Homestead Trail.
Trail #16 - Grouse Mountain Overlook
(0.8 mile round-trip)
This one is close to the campground, with lots of forest. You'll start at Cheesman Ranch Trail #17, to the Grouse Mountain Overlook #16. From there, you'll take it to the top of Grouse Mountain, which happens to be the highest point in the park, at 9,843 feet. You'll get a great view of Pikes Peak on one side, and the Sangre de Cristo Range on the other.
Trail #27 - Osborn Homestead Loop
(3.2 miles round trip)
If you are on Black Bear Trailhead (#13), from there you can head down to the Osborn Homestead Trail #27. Here you can find the Osborn Homestead ruins. It was build in the early 1900's by the Earl Osborn family. Continue down #27 to meet back up with #13, where you will take a right.
Can I rent horses at Mueller State Park?
Horses used to be available for rent, but not anymore. Now it's BYOH.
Is there camping for horses?
There are two horse camping sites at Mueller State Park, with electricity, water, grill, and picnic table. No more than two horses allowed per site. There are 34 miles of horse friendly trails available.
Is there a fee to enter the park?
Yes, it is $8 per vehicle. There is also an annual pass you can buy for $80, but it's only worth it if you plan on visiting the park a lot. An electric hook-up campsite is $36.00, and a basic walk-in tent campsite is $28.00. Additionally, you will need to pay for a daily or annual park pass on top of this amount.
Is Mueller State Park open in the winter?
Yes, and it is gorgeous. If you go during the winter, be sure to take part in snowshoeing, sledding, and snowtubing!
What kind of animals live in the park?
Wildlife you may typically see would include hawks, eagles, bighorn sheep, elk, black bears, and mountain lions. You will also see trout in the ponds, which are for fishing.
Do the animals stray near the campsites? Like bears or deer?
It's not too terribly likely. You'll more likely see squirrels and birds around. Be mindful of your food and your trash though, as any open containers will attract bears.
Do I need to make a reservation?
Yes, go to their website to do so. No sense in getting there and finding out everything is full.
Are there bathrooms/restrooms?
Yes, there are bathrooms at the campgrounds, at the gift shop/visitor center, and throughout the park trail entrances.
Are there bear boxes available?
Yes, ask for one when you enter the park if you need one, otherwise there should be a bear box at the campsite.
Are there camp sites for trailers?
How long can I camp at Mueller?
14 days in a 45 day period is the maximum stay you can camp at Mueller State Park.
How many campgrounds are there?
There are 134 campgrounds at the park: 99 electrical camp sites, 22 basic walk-in tent sites, an 11 site camp RV camping loop group, and 2 equestrian camp sites. All camp sites will include a picnic table and a fire pit. Walk out tent sites also include a bear box.
What is the elevation at Mueller State Park?
Elevation is 9,396 ft. Some areas of the park can get down to 9,000 ft. The highest point in Mueller State Park is at Grouse Mountain, at 9,843 feet.
Are dirt bikes allowed at Mueller?
No. Mountain bikes and horses is as far as you can go here. There are no motorized vehicles of any kind allowed off road.
Are dogs allowed?
Dogs are allowed only on the campgrounds, the roads, and the campground park areas. No dogs or other animals are allowed on the trails or in cabins. Some people ruined it and now there's a dog ban.
Mueller State Park tested out a leashed dog trial for a little while back in 2017, with signs, pamphlets, and everything, but they shut it down after the public left their dog poop bags, the actual dog poop just lying on the ground, and then people were letting their dogs off leash, chasing animals, and harassing other visitors.
So that's a hard no.
Can I rent a cabin?
Yes, but there are only three cabins. Cabins are for overnight camping. If you're thinking about it, reserve faaaaaar in advance. They will be booked for months.
Is there tent only camping available?
Yes, there are non-electric campsites that are $20 a night.
Are there RV hookups?
There is electric at the camp site, and a shared water spicket. There is also a dump station on the way out.
Can you go camping in the woods?
No. You are only allowed to camp at the designated campsites. They have some walk out tent sites available, where the campsite is several hundred yards from your car, so more secluded, and those are available May through October.
Can I get married at Mueller State Park?
Yes! They have an amphitheater which can accommodate up to 100 people and has a view of Pikes Peak. You can also rent out the Ponderosa Cabin, which holds up to 15 people. The park may also grant you access to use other places in the park for your wedding, such as Elk Meadow Trailhead, Grouse Mountain, and Peak View Pond.
Mueller State Park is located at 21045 CO-67, Divide, CO 80814.