Mt. Goliath Natural Area/Dos Chappell Nature Ctr.

Area Status: Closed
This area is Closed

Rainbow above bristlecone pine trees.

Located within the Mount Evans Recreation Area, the Mount Goliath Research Natural Area contains 160 acres set aside for the protection, study, interpretation and enjoyment of the Rocky Mountain bristlecone pine. The Dos Chappell Nature Center contains excellent exhibits that interpret how living things adapt to the harsh environments of the sub-alpine and alpine tundra. The main attraction is the Rocky Mountain bristlecone pine tree. These trees are 700 to 1,600 years old, making them some of the oldest tree species in the world. As you walk in the nature center, a 1,000-year-old nonliving example grasps your attention. Once you've viewed the exhibits, explore the nearby rock gardens and examine the small wildflowers in bloom behind the nature center. Experience an enchanted forest of old gnarled trees by traveling through the quarter-mile Bristlecone Loop Trail.

The building, exhibits, and grounds are the result of a cooperative effort between Denver Botanic Gardens, Volunteers for Outdoor Colorado, and the U.S. Forest Service. 

At a Glance

Current Conditions: The road from Summit Lake to the Summit Interpretive Area is closed to motor vehicles as of Sept. 7, 2021.  The Mount Evans road from Echo Lake to Summit Lake is open through Oct. 3, 2021, weather permitting. Reservations required.
Operational Hours: Outside area open 24/7. Nature Center hours 10:00am - 5:00pm seven days a week.
Reservations: Reservations are required for entry.  Go to to create an account and purchase your ticket.
Area Amenities: Interpretive Site,Toilets,Parking
Permit Info: A timed-entry reservation must be purchased in advance at
Usage: Heavy
  • No camping, campfires or stove fires except in designated campgrounds or dispersed campsites.
  • Dogs must be on a hand-held leash at all times.
  • Always follow Leave No Trace principles.
Closest Towns: Idaho Springs, CO
Water: None
Restroom: Vault toilets
Operated By: U.S. Forest Service

General Information

Directions: I-70 westbound, Idaho Springs exit #240 - Hwy 103. Drive approx. 12 miles to the turn off for Highway 5, Mount Evans road. Proceed through the fee station and drive 3 miles south on Highway 5 to the area.

Recreation Map

Map showing recreational areas. Map Information



Show detail SHOW

Nature Viewing

Show detail SHOW

Outdoor Learning

Show detail SHOW


Interpretive Site

Know Before You Go

Areas & Activities

Related Links

Campgrounds At-A-Glance


  Latitude : 

  Longitude : 

  Elevation :