• Activities:

    Chillin, Photography

  • Skill Level:

    Beginner

  • Season:

    Year Round

Bathrooms
Easy Parking
Family Friendly
Groups
River
Scenic
Waterfall

Beautiful Waterfall. Escape the heat of the Western Slope. Small but beautiful state park. 0.5 mile roundtrip walk.

RIfle Falls is located up Rifle Canyon just outside of the town of Rifle on I-70 in Southern Colorado. After driving by the sign for this gem many times on my drives from Utah to Colorado I made a short detour to check out the falls and have some lunch.

The state park is small with a some short trails, car camping, some short hiking trails with campsites, and these waterfalls with picnic tables nearby.

The hike up to the falls is easy and takes less than 5 minutes up a paved road. There's various small trails that wind up and around the falls and in to the caves made out of the carbonate rock which makes up the falls.

Take advantage of the trails and you can shoot the falls from lots of angles with little effort. The falls are in a canyon so shooting them in balanced light isn't much of a challenge although you may have to wait for people to move to get a good shot.

There's lots of great camping spots close to the falls and even some with power which can be nice if you need to charge your batteries.

The water has a lot of minerals in it so be sure to use a lens filter and bring a lens cloth to keep your lens as dry as possible.

Pack List

  • Tripod
  • Lens cleaning cloth
  • Neutral Density Filters
  • Mountainsmith Parallax camera bag
  • Lunch
Read More

Please respect the places you find on The Outbound.

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures. Be aware of local regulations and don't damage these amazing places for the sake of a photograph. Learn More

Community Photos

+ Add Photos

Reviews

Overall rating: 

Leave a Review

The falls themselves are awesome, but it's worth the 20 minutes it takes to walk the path behind and above the falls. The trail will take you along limestone caves before making your way to the overlooks above the falls. Though it's a little out of the way, this adventure could easily be turned in to a day trip by camping in the park and exploring the other trails.

over 1 year ago
over 1 year ago

A 30 second walk brings you to a surprisingly spectacular waterfall. The calcium deposits and falls seem almost out of place in the mountain/desert landscape. The full path around the falls takes you by some pretty cool caves. All in all, nothing fancy, but a nice spot to grab a waterfall photo.

almost 2 years ago
almost 2 years ago

Fall comes a little later here than in the high mountains but it's worth the wait. One of Colorado's few photogenic waterfalls.

over 2 years ago
over 2 years ago

Derrick Lytle Explorer

- trail running - time lapse photography - filmmaking - adventure -

 @derricklytle derricklytle.tumblr.com

Are we missing something? Suggest an edit

Nearby Adventures

Hike the Sugar Bowl Loop in Kings Canyon NP

Tulare County, California

First and foremost, to get to this trailhead you need to drive down a 2-mile, one lane dirt road that is quite steep.

6 Saves

Hike to Ehukai Pillbox

59178 Ke Nui Road, Hawaii

This hike starts directly across from Banzai Pipeline, the famous barreling wave at Ehukai Beach.

7 Saves

Winter Hike to Calypso Cascades

1046 County Highway 115, Colorado

While most people go snowshoeing near the Bear Lake or Glacier Gorge area in RMNP, Wild Basin is a much less trafficked option.

5 Saves