Denver is Colorado's capital and largest city surrounded by many suburbs such as Centennial, Commerce City, Aurora and Westminster. The phrase urban sprawl comes to mind. But as with all big cities hitching just takes some time and patience.
North towards Boulder, Fort Collins
Find a way into the city of Golden (either hitch from 6th and Kalamath or take the bus from Market Station and 16th Street), a small city famous for Coors Brewing and the School of Mines. Walk out of the city going northwest until you reach where Highway 6 turns into Highway 93, a large intersection of two highways. Continue north until you reach the sign marking mileage to Boulder. Continue from there to Longmont, Fort Collins, etc. Note:Before departure, stop into Coors and ask for the "short tour" for a couple of free and refreshing Killians or Blue Moons with the local students partaking in what they have dubbed "Coors Lab." Simply ask anybody in the city how to get to the tasting room. But I digress.
Another option to catch an even longer distance ride is to take the Fox Street (AKA Park Ave west/23rd St.) entrance ramp to I25/US87 north. There is a hotel and large gas station before this ramp which assures a solid amount of long distance traffic. In April 2016 I was at this spot, the entrance ramp did not work out after 45 minutes. At the gas station I found a ride in 20 minutes by asking people. One guy even bought me a coffee. The shopowner did not like me hanging around there and asked me to leave within 30 minutes.
Arriving at Union Stion in Downtown Denver a very good option going north is to walk to 20th street and stand on the side of the bridge over South Plate River to stop cars getting on I-25 North. September 2019 I got a ride after 30 minutes in the sun all the way to Downtown Boulder from there. There is another on-ramp accessible by foot from Denver Uniton Station: Walk to Speer Blvd and try your luck. September 2019 I stood there for 20 minutes and then gave up as cars have no good place to stop there. I then walked to the other in my opinion way better spot near 20th street.
West Into the Mountains
There is a gas station off of the Morrison exit on 470 if you seek to go to Evergreen or Conifer. Great little towns. There are park and ride spots near most of the 1-70 exits near the foothills that are in frequent use. Try hitching from there. Or take Highway 6 West from the 6/93 intersection in Golden.
East Towards Kansas
These directions will get you to an EBD ramp, however I had no luck here, and after about 2 hours of shiny SUV's passing me, I gave up, but for informational puroposes: Take the bus "airport blvd park-n-ride" - #43. I think a few others go out there as well. You can ride it to the end of the line, which is the Walmart shopping center, or the park-n-ride. Both stops are walking distance to I-70. The ramp is nice and big, might just take you a while to get a lift though considering the demographics of the area, but it'll get you on your way.
' ' bailamoooos started at a truck stop on Rt 70 West just outside Denver and got a ride with a trucker straight to Salina, Kansas after a 30 minute wait. I was also offered a ride to Dallas by a trucker. Salina has a truckstop, a motel, and a campground within 50 yards of the highway.' '
South Towards Colorado Springs
Traveling South out of Denver can be difficult at best. RidgeGate Parkway (where Cabella's is located) is the last accessible onramp heading South (by bus) and not hitchhiker-friendly. 1 exit to the North is Lincoln, which has a decent pullover area. However, the entire area is brand-new and the expensive SUV's are far more likely to give you cash than a ride. Consider Greyhound to Colorado Springs if you're in a hurry. If you don't mind waiting a day or two for a ride, food & money can be easily gotten in the area and there are still plenty of fields to camp in. The library does have an upstairs family bathroom to get cleaned up in and the hotel has free breakfast.
If possible, a ride to the truck stop on Baptist Road in Monument (just North of Colorado Springs) is an excellent hitch spot, making it easy to get a ride to Albuquerque and beyond. Otherwise, expect long waits and short rides into New Mexico.
NOTE: This is my second time hitching from this spot (Lincoln Ave. in Denver). The last time I waited 3 days before a sympathetic pastor finally stopped and bought me a bus ticket to Houston after seeing me there for so long. - jsplts
may 2018: denver to austin, tx was our plan. friends dropped us off at an on-ramp(esque) just near W Plum Creek Pkwy (39.364478, -104.866916) in castle rock; 40 minute wait led us to hop over i25 to S Wilcox St (39.364620, -104.863877) which leads to i25. not ideal, but a bee keeper from CO springs snatched us up maybe 10 minutes later. from there, short rides got us to Monument, CO Springs, Fountain, Pueblo, CO City, Walsenburg, Trinidad and Raton, NM. probably my slowest hitching experience! not much through traffic in that area, but wait til you get further south of the larger cities. made up for it when we caught a lucky 10 hour ride to our doorstep in austin with three very texan men heading home from a christian conference in the rockies. praise the lord! [two_string_sally]
Light rail has various stops from the city center going south. Market St and 16th St has a major bus hub. Good to get you anywhere in the greater Denver area
Places to Avoid
Parts of downtown Denver, including the section of East Colfax between Broadway and Colorado Boulevard, and also the Five Points neighborhood northeast of the capital, are often considered by residents to be the most dangerous areas of the city. Opinions differ as to whether or not the reputation is deserved. Although at one point in the not so recent past areas such as Five Points had a high rate of poverty and crime, during the past decade getrification has generally reduced concerns for personal safety when visiting that area or almost any part of the city of Denver, at least for those familiar with seedier areas in large cities.
- "Yeah I got dropped off in this truck stop past midnight. The trucker gave me his shower token and I washed off, then asked the workers which way to downtown - and both of them, this young girl and young guy, freaked and were like "Do nooot go walkin in this neighborhood at night!" and I was like "Cmon guys can't be that bad." They were tellin me about all the shady people, and me being dumb, thinkin I was all tough after homelessing around South Central LA and stuff, go walkin. The people are shady sure but, in those bad no-cop neighborhoods, people let their dogs wander around like in small-towns, but these are city dogs. Anyway, anywhere downtown is fine. Anywho I love, love, love Denver, it's my soul's home, I stop by Denver every time I travel."