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10 Surprisingly Stellar Waterfalls In Colorado

Let’s be honest, while Colorado has a lot of waterfalls, most of them aren't very impressive.

By: Jason Hatfield + Save to a List

All that dry air up there means almost none of the famous greenery surrounding falls in the Pacific Northwest. What Colorado doesn't have in waterfalls though, it more than makes up for in high mountain vistas. Luckily those tall peaks have created some pretty unique spots in the centennial state and it just so happens the best of them have some stellar falls. So before you book that ticket for a weekend trip to Portland, grab your camera, and check out the 10 best waterfall spots in Colorado.

1. Hanging Lake

Photo: Nicola Easterby

You're going to have to work for Hanging Lake, one of the most beautiful spots in the state, as the trail climbs over 1000 ft. in just over a mile. The reward is an oasis of blue water and verdant scenery fed by a wide falls. Learn more.

2. Spouting Rock

Photo: Korey Taylor

Sitting just above Hanging Lake, this waterfall blasts right out of a wall of rock. Learn more.

3. Rifle Falls

Photo: Derrick Lytle

Bring a picnic lunch to this triple-falls, it's only a short walk from the parking lot and tables sit nearby. Learn more.

4. Crystal Mill

Photo: Mike Fennell

It's not just the rough road that will make you want to stay here a while, an old mill sits on top of a thundering falls and surrounded by golden aspens in the fall. Learn more.

5. Nellie Creek Falls

Photo: Jason Hatfield

If you're looking for a worthy photo side-trip before tackling a 14er stop here, just up the road sits the TH to the tallest peak in the San Juans. Learn more.

6. North Clear Falls

Photo: Jason Hatfield

Make sure to visit this spot in the late summer or fall when the thundering creek has dialed back some, revealing all the levels of this falls. Learn more.

7. Twin Falls

Photo: Jason Hatfield

Wildflowers and wildlife fill this mountain valley just below 14er Mt. Sneffels.  Keep a sharp eye out for shrieking pika, cute little rodents that live in the high alpine environment. Learn more.

8. Bridal Veil Falls

Photo: Jason Hatfield

While it doesn't have a very unique name, Bridal Veil Falls is the tallest waterfall in the state at 365 ft. Learn more.

9. Mystic Falls

Photo: Andrew Slaton

This hidden falls can be tough to find, but the thrill of standing in the narrow box canyon is more than worth it.  Avoid this falls during big storms, there's no quick way out in a flash-flood. Learn more.

10. South Fork Mineral Creek Falls

Photo: Jason Hatfield

Somebody stuck a waterfall from Oregon in the mountains and didn't tell anyone. The unique, glacial-blue waterfall is surrounded by lush moss and vibrant evergreens creating what is arguably the best waterfall in Colorado. Learn more.

Cover photo: Jason Hatfield

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

We want to acknowledge and thank the past, present, and future generations of all Native Nations and Indigenous Peoples whose ancestral lands we travel, explore, and play on. Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures and follow local regulations. Please explore responsibly!

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