White Ranch Park Destination Guide
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White Ranch Park: Destination Guide

White Ranch Park is a beautiful open space located in Jefferson County, Colorado, just north of Golden. It’s convenient location and proximity to Denver, Boulder, etc., make the park very popular with day hikers and trail runners. Indeed, of all the parks in the Jefferson County Open Space system, White Ranch Park is the largest with 3,953 acres and 21.5 miles of trails. White Ranch Park’s trail network is predominately multi-use, so hikers, trail runners, mountain bikers, and horseback riders all share the trails. For other Jeffco parks, check out our destination reviews on Mount Galbraith Park and North Table Mountain Park.

Destination Guide Series: White Ranch Park

Where is White Ranch Park?

White Ranch Park is located in Jefferson County, north of Golden, CO. The East Trailhead is closest to Golden, just off of Pine Ridge Rd. and West 56th Ave. Alternatively, the West Trailhead is most commonly accessed via Golden Gate Canyon Rd. to Crawford Gulch Rd., with a sharp turn onto Belcher Hill Rd.

Why Should You Visit White Ranch Park?

White Ranch Park is only minutes away from downtown Golden and within close proximity to the Denver metro area. Its convenient access and diverse array of trails make it a fantastic day trip destination. Highly popular with trail runners, hikers, and mountain bikers, White Ranch Park has plenty of recreational options and varied terrain for all skill sets. In addition, the park has 20 reservable campsites within two campgrounds (Sawmill and Sourdough Springs). Since camping is only permitted within one other park in the Jefferson County Open Space system, consider reserving campsites well in advance of your visit. 

Things to Do

Hiking and Trail Running

White Ranch Park has an extensive hiking trail network, almost all of which are multi-use trails that share access with horseback riders and mountain bikers. Most trails have multiple intersections with other trails in the park, so making your own loop amongst trail segments is a great option. Check the park map before you go to see whether the East Trailhead or West Trailhead parking lot is most convenient for your hike. Some of the trails below are short branch trails that can add variety and length to a loop hike of your own design.


White Ranch Park has two established, but fairly primitive campgrounds, Sawmill Campground and Sourdough Springs. Both campgrounds have 10 campsites each, are tent-only, and require camping permits. Camping permits via Jefferson County’s reservation system for $12.00/night and must be obtained 24 hours in advance.

Mountain Biking

Mountain biking is permitted on the multi-use trails throughout White Ranch Park’s trail network, which includes nearly all park trails. Note that mountain bikers will share multi-use trails with horseback riders and hikers. The Middle Longhorn Trail segment is a one-way, designated use trail for mountain bikers only and is 0.9 miles long.

Horseback Riding

Horseback riding is permitted on the multi-use trails throughout White Ranch Park’s trail network, which includes nearly all park trails. Riders will share multi-use trails with mountain bikers and hikers. Note that Middle Longhorn Trail is a mountain bike only trail. Also, for horseback riders that opt to camp overnight, Sourdough Springs Campground is an ideal choice since it has a horse trough and corral.

Planning Tips

Recommended Books

For a well-rounded and more interpretive Colorado Open Space experience, we recommend picking up a few naturalist guides. An easy to use field guide for plants and birds will help identify species and further add to the enjoyment of your time outdoors. 

Disclosure: Please note that this post contains affiliate links. We may receive a small commission if you buy a product or service through an affiliate link. This revenue helps us provide readers with helpful content to plan amazing adventures.

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