Bridal Veil Falls Hike
The Bridal Veil Falls Hike is a charming family-friendly adventure in the Rocky Mountain National Park. Travel through towering pine trees interspersed with vibrant aspens up to the beautiful cascading falls. The versatility of this trail allows it to be enjoyed year around by outdoor enthusiasts!
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Route Description for Bridal Veil Falls Hike
The Bridal Veil Falls Hike may be one of the best waterfall excursions in Rocky Mountain National Park. Adventure through the various typographies to the trail’s culmination at the scenic falls. This excursion is a crowd favorite and there is no doubt as to why, but it means sharing! If you venture this hike on the weekend expect to see many other keen adventurers like yourself trekking the charming route. If you wish to avoid the crowds, we recommend arriving in the early morning, especially because parking is limited! The path begins at the McGraw Ranch and the lot fills up fast. If there are no spots, there are a few places along the roadside that allow parking. Note that hikers are required to purchase a Rocky Mountain National Park (RMNP) pass to utilize the trails.
The diversity of the terrain and the stunning scenery are why so many, locals and visitors alike, love the Bridal Veil Trail. Ideal for families and novice hikers, the well-maintained, well-signposted trail is easy to navigate and manageable for most! Hike through verdant woodlands, through towering granite outcroppings and up to the cascading Bridal Veil Falls. Not only does this adventure guide you through the stunning natural environment, but it begins at the historic McGaw Ranch. Explore the grounds of the impressive ranch before commencing your hike! As you can tell, we love this excursion in the Rocky Mountain National Park and we think you will too.
Begin your adventure along the Bridal Veil Falls Trail from the grounds of the McGraw Ranch. From here, take the path signposted for ‘Cow Creek Trail’. Follow the Cow Creek Trail through the meadows and alongside the babbling brook. Shortly after your departure from the trailhead, you will confront an intersection, stay straight on the Cow Creek Trail. Notice MacGregor Mountain in the northwest as you hike along the increasingly forested path. Enjoy the tree shade and the sights of the lush, pine and aspen trees towering above. Soon you will pass several dispersed campsites that sit alongside the route.
As you progress further into the wilderness you will encounter another junction. At this point, you will want to veer right. This grade along this section of the trail is more intense. Pass the Peregrine Campsites and continue following the path along the curves of the Cow Creek. As you ascend this route you will pass several impressive granite outcroppings. Traverse these large boulders and you will eventually meet Bridal Veil Falls. Admire the mesmerizing cascades and hike up the boulder for an awesome sight of the valley below.
Dip your tired feet in the chilly alpine waters and snap a few photos of the falls before continuing your journey. If you are seeking a longer adventure, you can continue hiking the Cow Creek Trail further into the Colorado wilderness for epic views of the Mummy Range. If you have had enough excitement, retrace your steps along the path back to the trailhead at the McGraw Ranch.
McGraw Ranch is now a recreational facility in the east end of the Rocky Mountain National Park, but it used to be a lucrative cattle ranch. Built in 1884 and bought by the McGraw family in 1908, the property was converted into a dude ranch in 1936. The ranch remained a guest destination until 1988 when it was purchased by the Rocky Mountain National Park. Now, after over $2 million dollars in restoration, the ranch is a research facility and recreational area. Serving as an entrance portal for many trails in the area, including the Bridal Veil Falls Hike, the ranch sees plenty of traffic.
Insider Hints for Bridal Veil Falls Hike
- Pack provisions and have a picnic by the stunning waterfall
- Trade your hiking shoes for snowshoes in the winter months!
- Head into Estes Park and grab a latte and a treat at Coffee on the Rocks
Getting to the Bridal Veil Falls Hike Trailhead
The Bridal Veil Falls Hike departs from the Cow Creek Trailhead in the Rocky Mountain National Park.
Bridal Veil Falls Hike Elevation Graph
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Bridal Veil Falls Hike Reviews
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