Mueller State Park has many opportunities for the nature lover with a mixed coniferous forest, wetland and other plant communities, numerous species of wildlife and interesting geological features.
A popular wildlife watching area, Mueller is home to elk, black bear, mountain lions, hawks and mule deer. Over 115 species of migratory and resident birds are known for this area including raptors and songbirds. Common raptors are golden eagle, red-tailed hawk, Cooper’s hawk, goshawk, American kestrel, great horned owl and turkey vulture. Visitors are also likely to see broad-tailed hummingbird, common flicker, yellow-bellied sapsucker, hairy woodpecker, Steller’s jay, Clark’s nutcracker, mountain chickadee and mountain bluebird. The number and diversity of invertebrate species present in aquatic and terrestrial habitats are considered normal for the region. Mueller’s ponds are home to trout.
Ecologically, park uplands are dominated by mixed coniferous forest, aspen forest, montane grassland, rock outcrop and wetland communities. Mature stands of bristlecone pine, ponderosa pine, limber pine, Douglas-fir, Engelmann spruce, and aspen are found on south facing slopes. North facing slopes support stands of Engelmann spruce, limber pine, Douglas fir and aspen. Common understory species include common juniper, kinnikinnick, white stem gooseberry, prickly currant, mountain mahogany, raspberry, pine dropseed and mountain muhly. Aspen stands dominate portions of the northern meadows.
Understory species common to aspen stands include shrubby cinquefoil, Rocky mountain maple, red elderberry, baneberry, Colorado blue columbine, monkshood, bluebells, golden banner, yarrow and harebell. Montane grasslands or meadows are common in the northern portion on dry clay soils; common grass species include Arizona fescue, needlegrass, blue grama, prairie Junegrass, squirreltail, milkvetch, locoweed, penstemon, pussytoes and stonecrop. A variety of wetland communities are present along tributary drainages, pond margins and on seeps and springs. Several uncommon or rare plant species on the park include calypso orchid, rattlesnake fern, grass fern, maidenhair spleenwort, bunchberry, swamp violet and golden sedge.
Mueller encompasses 5,121 acres. It lies on the western foothills of Pikes Peak, an area supporting aspen and montane coniferous forests and montane grassland. Precambrian Pikes Peak Granite, part of the Pike’s Peak batholith, underlies Mueller. Pikes Peak Granite consists of biotite or biotite-hornblende rocks. Several inactive faults trend north to south through the park.