This may be the most accessible waterfall near Denver.
If you hit the right parking lot, the hike takes only abut 10 minutes. But is a hike really a hike if it only takes 10 minutes? So, grab a park brochure and find the Northernmost trailhead for the Creek Bottom Trail (Homestead Trailhead). This will add close to 1 mile to your hike. Then you can loop back via the Cherry Creek Trail for a total of about 2 miles.
|Hike Distance||1/4 mile Round Trip (see trail options below)|
|Difficulty||Easy to Moderate|
|Trail Type||Out & Back and Loop|
|Dogs||Allowed on Leash in Most Areas|
|Denver Drive Time||50 min|
|Directions||Click for Google Map|
|Beauty||Cherry Creek, waterfall, interesting geology, canyon views, ruins|
|Activities||Rock climbing, hiking, picnic areas, birdwatching, wildlife viewing|
|Fee Required||Visit Colorado State Parks Site|
Tips & Resources for Hiking to the Castlewood Canyon Waterfall :
- Easy to Miss: The West Side entrance can be hard to find. Usually, Colorado state parks have brown signs indicating the park roads. The west side doesn’t. But the name of the road you’re looking for is “Castlewood Canyon” – easy to remember.
- Shortest Access: The shortest way to access the falls is by parking at the Waterfall Parking Lot, then taking the Waterfall Spur to the Creek Bottom Trail. Head South, and you’ll hear the waterfall in just a few moments.
- Exposed: Hikes in Castlewood Canyon can be quite exposed to the sun, so bring the sunscreen
- Poison Ivy: We’ve been surprised how poison ivy flourishes in this park, often along the edge of the trail. Know how to identify it, so that you can avoid it. But don’t let that deter you from the park. You just need to keep an eye out. See our post on how to identify and treat poison ivy.
- Trail Map for Castlewood Canyon State Park: Trail Map Link
- Colorado Road Conditions: Colorado Road Conditions
- After the Hike: Crowfoot Valley Coffee
Click for Driving Directions