Exploring the overlooks on Rim Rock Drive is a great way to enjoy the Colorado National Monument. In fact, I recommend seeing it for the first time from the overlooks.

Once you have enjoyed that, start making plans to hike into the monument on foot for a breathtaking view of the canyons and rock formations from below. Today we will be looking at photos from the hike to Independence Monument from the Wedding Canyon entrance.

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Where is the Monument Canyon Trailhead?

Tucked in low off of 340, you'll find the Monument Canyon Trailhead on the south side of the road between home residential lots. We'll include a map to get you there in the gallery below. There is lots of room to park on dirt or gravel here. Be sure to lock your car before heading in.

Why is Wedding Canyon the Best Route to Independence Monument?

We recommend hiking this route in the morning during the heart of summer. If you hike in the early morning you'll get shade as you climb in Wedding Canyon. If you go up via Monument Canyon, you'll hike in the sun the entire time.

Not only is there a special view as you make it to the top of Wedding Canyon, but there is also a bit of history on this trail. You'll be walking the same route that John Otto had his wedding guests walk to attend his ceremony at Independence Monument in 1911. As you walk up the slopes, imagine the impression this must have given his new inlaws.

How Long Does it Take to Hike Monument Canyon Loop?

The hike into Independence Monument is about 2.5 miles via Wedding Canyon or Monument Canyon. If you do the entire loop you will hike a little more than 5 miles. I started from the trailhead at 7 AM and made it back to the parking area by 9:30.

Scroll on to see some of the breathtaking photos you can get while hiking this trail.

Hike This Trail for the Best View of Colorado's Independence Monument

KEEP GOING: The Hike into Beautiful Echo Canyon at the Colorado National Monument

Located just off the Devil's Kitchen trails system, you'll find the path to the incredible Echo Canyon. This beautiful trail sends you up and over several smooth rocks before descending down into a beautiful box canyon that sometimes hides a waterfall.

MORE: Climb the Steps at Devils Kitchen Near Grand Junction, Colorado

The hike to Devil's Kitchen is one of the most popular trails in the Colorado National Monument. This hike has it all and is rated as moderate for the scramble up the rocks which is well worth the view at the end.

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