5 Beautiful Waterfall Hikes in Colorado

Spring is just around the corner here in the Rocky Mountains, and all that snow melt means rushing water falls.  It’s time to start planning for adventure once you finally pack up the ski gear in two months.  There are some amazing views out here, and not just from the top of the slopes.  Here are five beautiful waterfall hikes in Colorado.

1. Bridal Veil Falls, Telluride 

Staggering at a total height of 365 feet, this is the tallest free falling waterfall in Colorado.  This majestic waterfall is 10,279′ in elevation, and the elevation gain on this 4.9 miles hike is about 1,380 making it a nice moderate trail.  The trek to Bridal Veil Falls is picture perfect and very dog friendly.  The closer you get to the top, the more of the Hydroelectric power plant at the tip top will reveal itself.  The power plant is the second oldest AC generation facility in the country, as it was built in 1907 to supply the Smuggler’s Union Mine.  While this may be the turnaround point for some, the pretty basin encourages further hiking into Blue Lake and Lewis Lake and Mine.  

2. Seven Falls, Colorado Springs 

If you’re looking for steep, narrow canyons and stunning falls close to the Denver area, Seven Falls is a very popular destination.  Though it’ll cost you, the privately-owned tourist attraction is well worth it.  You’ll start with a 185-step climb to a view point called Eagles Nest, giving you a breathtaking view of the falls as well as South Cheyenne Canyon.  The next set of steps is a 224-step hike up the canyon to the top of the falls.  Fun fact about this gem: it’s the only waterfall in Colorado to make National Geographic’s list of international waterfalls.  

3. Rifle Falls, Rifle 

Head to western Colorado off of I-70 to Rifle Falls State Park, which highlights it’s triple 70 foot waterfall heading over a damn in the middle of the 48-acre park.  With only a handful of drive-in and walk-in campsites located at the park, if you plan to spend a few days here you’ll want to arrive early as spots are limited.

4. Alberta Falls, Estes Park  

With a distance of 1.6 miles and elevation gain of 219 feet, this family friendly hike is relatively easy.  The falls begins at 0.8 miles down the trail from the parking area.  Start your hike at the Glacier Gorge Trailhead located on Bear Lake Road in the Rocky Mountains.  This is a great historical hotspot to read up about before traveling.  Named after the original land owner Abner Sprague’s wife, Alberta, this land is filled with fun facts.  This beautiful rushing fall is definitely a must see! 

5. Fish Creek Falls, Steamboat 

Not only is Fish Creek Falls a beautiful site but its just outside of Steamboat Springs, Colorado.  Make your way to this Northwest Colorado mountain town for a weekend of fun.  The lower falls trail is wheelchair accessible, making it a great time for people of any age and skill level!  To get to the base of the falls is not a long haul, but the more adventurous can make their way over the bridge and head up the more difficult trail to the top of the falls.

Want to ride down some waterfalls via raft?  Kidding, we aren’t that hardcore, but we do run some of the best whitewater rapids in Colorado.  Call Breckenridge Whitewater Rafting today to book your river adventure this year!  We run stretches of whitewater for all skill levels and ages, so you can decide if you’d like to enjoy a scenic float on the Upper Colorado River or take on some of the most difficult commercially rafted whitewater in Colorado on Pine Creek.

 

*Featured image courtesy of Charlie Dresen.