Located in Colorado Springs, we visited in late May. It is said of May in Colorado Springs, that it may rain, it may snow and it may be hot. We got every one of those weather predictions on our visit. On our first visit it was 80 degrees and gorgeous out. Two days later, it had 8" of snow and it became even more gorgeous in the snow.
The garden's red rock formations were created during a geological upheaval along a natural fault line millions of years ago. Archaeological evidence shows that prehistoric people visited Garden of the Gods about 1330 BC. At about 250 BC, Native American people camped in the park; they are believed to have been attracted to wildlife and plant life in the area and used overhangs created by the rocks for shelter. Many native peoples have reported a connection to Garden of the Gods, including Apache, Cheyenne, Comanche, Kiowa, Lakota, Pawnee, Shoshone, and Ute people.
In 1879 Charles Elliott Perkins, a friend of William Jackson Palmer, purchased 480 acres of land that included a portion of the present Garden of the Gods. Upon Perkins' death, his family gave the land to the City of Colorado Springs in 1909, with the provision that it would be a free public park. Palmer had owned the Rock Ledge Ranch and upon his death it was donated to the city.
Helen Hunt Jackson wrote of the park, "You wind among rocks of every conceivable and inconceivable shape and size... all bright red, all motionless and silent, with a strange look of having been just stopped and held back in the very climax of some supernatural catastrophe."
In 1995 the Garden of the Gods Visitor and Nature Center was opened just outside the park.
Feeding time at the garden!!
I have to say that Garden of the Gods is prettiest covered with snow. The Gardens are packed with miles of multi-use trails that wind amongst the towering formations and beyond, treating hikers, mountain bikers and leisure walkers to sweeping views of Pikes Peak and the foothills. Catch a glimpse of Colorado wildlife, get boots-on along some of the park’s specialty trails or bring along the camera and fill your memory cards with magic. With horseback rides, segway tours, jeep tours and even a trolley, there’s literally a perfect adventure for all. Offering paved and dirt trails and disability access, there’s something for everyone in the park.