7 Dog-Friendly Waterfall Hikes Near Denver

A cute orange dog drinking water in a lake during daytime

Even the biggest city slicker pup enjoys a rejuvenating nature hike. Luckily, dog blessed Colorado with an abundance of picturesque mountainside trails and panoramas. Go chase waterfalls at these 7 waterfall hikes near Denver.

1. Maxwell Falls

Nestled near Conifer, the scenic Maxwell Falls is a moderately difficult 4.3-mile loop, so maybe only take trained pawthletes. A pupular destination for Denverites, hiking aficionados recommend starting in the morning to avoid crowds. For best views of the waterfall, visit in late spring or early summer before the drought season.

2. Bridal Veil Falls at Charlie Tayler Water Wheel

Have a senior dog who can’t hoof it up a steep trail? Short on time? Check out the Bridal Veil Falls at Charlie Tayler Water Wheel. Located a short walk from downtown Idaho Springs, this quarter-mile paved trail features an excellent view of the small but mighty Bridal Veil Falls. 

3. Boulder Falls

Featuring swoon-worthy views of the Flatirons and a puppin’ ton of trails (yes that’s an official measurement), Boulder is a hiker’s paradise. Head 10 minutes outside of town to check out Boulder Falls. Situated in a stunning canyon, the falls are a short .03-mile hike from the trailhead parking lot. Rocks leading to the falls get slippery, so make sure your pup has good traction booties and is supervised during the climb. 

4. Elk Falls and Chimney Rock Trail

Ultimutt adventure hounds’ll ruv Elk Falls and Chimney Rock Trail in Conifer. With a 1500-foot elevation gain, this difficult 14.5-mile trail is werk. But it’s worth it for the epic views of falls cascading down a 75-foot cliff. Elk Falls is situated in Staunton State Park, so there’s a $10 entrance fee per car.

5. Rainbow Falls

Is your pup a history and hiking buff? Head to Rainbow Falls. Located near Manitou Springs, this easy half-mile trail loop winds from a historic covered bridge to the falls. The orange and red canyon walls are often covered in colorful graffiti, making fur interesting photography for your Instadog. 

6. Castlewood Canyon Falls Trail 

For a mix of prairie and mountain views, drive to Castlewood Canyon State Park in Frankentown. For a $10 day pass, you and your dog will enjoy trails, wildflowers, a view of an old dam, picnic areas, and scenic overlooks. We recommend Castlewood Canyon Falls Trail, an easy 1.1-mile loop trail. 

7. Forsythe Canyon Waterfall and Gross Reservoir

Tucked southwest of Boulder near Nederland, Forsythe Canyon Waterfall and Gross Reservoir is a gorgeous 3-mile out and back trail. The wooded canyon and reservoir are stunning. Go in late spring or early summer to see the falls. Though the trail is rated easy, the last leg has extra steep boulders that small or senior dogs will find challenging. 

What is your adventure hound’s fave waterfall hike near Denver? Woof at us in the comments, post in our Dog-Friendly Denver Facebook Group, and be sure to tag #SidewalkDog in your Insta pics.

Featured Photo: Rachel Baskerville

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