When I was in Denver last week for my mother’s 80th birthday, we decided to have lunch in the mountains. We decided to go to Kittridge, a small town (actually tiny) near the top of Bear Creek canyon, about 20 miles from Morrison. The small (population 500) mountain community of Kittredge is located between the towns of Evergreen and Idledale in Bear Creek Canyon and offers access to several Denver Mountain Parks and Jefferson County Open Space parks perfect for picnics, hiking, mountain biking, snowshoeing and cross-country skiing. Bear Creek Canyon was a favorite of old Denver, full of small parks, which were close enough for picnics after work, which we often did with my parents. These days Bear Creek Canyon is a favorite of bicyclists who climb to the top in Evergreen or Kittridge, have a bite to eat, then race downhill on the windy road to Morrison. Bear Creek Tavern is similar to Creekside Cellars in Evergreen with more of an old Colorado feel.
Bear Creek Tavern/Restaurant is right on the water, in fact some of Bear Creek runs under the restaurant. On the day we were there, the windows were open and you could hear the rushing water of Bear Creek. The interior was old Colorado mountain and the menu was mostly burgers and Mexican though well prepared and compensated for by the view outside the windows. The food was good, hearty and we had a lovely lunch. I didn’t bother to take pictures since I had a burger and my parents had enchiladas. There is a patio outside that was closed the day we visited but it overlooks a beautiful green area next to Bear Creek when it is open.
The grass is really green because the river is overflowing the banks and making the entire area wet and swampy. The trees at the altitude of Kittridge are still not coming out. They have a picnic bench for those who bring their own lunch.
As you get farther down the canyon, the trees got greener. If you visit Denver, be sure to visit Bear Creek Canyon for a taste of old Colorado and the beautiful sounds and scenes of Bear Creek.