This short hike just outside Ft. Collins, Colorado is perfect for families looking for a day trip.

Horsetooth Mountain Park is an outdoor trail haven just minutes from downtown Ft. Collins. The 2711 acre area has 29 miles of trails of varying length and difficulty for all levels of adventurers to explore.

Horsetooth Falls is one of the shortest (yet stunning) trails in the area. This hike is ideal because it is short enough for families with young children, and dogs are allowed. The trail starts at the base of the mountain park and climbs through grassy fields for about half a mile. Hikers will find true mountain scenery after this first half mile. The trail is lined by several species of pine trees, as well as wildflowers in the summer. Deer, several bird species, and several rodent species can also be spotted from the trail. Hikers will continue to follow the well defined path for another half mile and soon arrive at the falls. The waterfall drops into a shallow water pool that hikers are welcome to wade in if they desire. Adventurers can explore the area surrounding the falls by hiking down to the creek leading from the waterfall or hiking behind the fall.

Looking east on the way back, hikers will see the city of Fort Collins from an elevated view. Looking to the west, hikers will see the snow capped Rocky Mountain Range towering in the distance. The trail can be completed relatively quickly (around 30 minutes for power hikers) which leaves plenty of time to explore other trails for the rest of the day.

If you're looking for another nearby adventure, check out Horsetooth Roc,.

Pack List

  • Good hiking shoes
  • Water
  • Snacks
  • Camera
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RT Distance 2.22 Miles
Elevation Gain 101 Feet
Activities Chillin, Running, Hiking, Fitness
Skill Level Beginner
Season Spring, Summer, Autumn
Trail Type Out-and-Back
Features
Bathrooms
Dog Friendly
Easy Parking
Family Friendly
Food Nearby
Forest
Groups
Scenic
Waterfall
Wildlife

Reviews

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Overall rating: 

Great hike for out-of-towners

This trail is extremely easy, very good for first timers and families.


Please respect the places you find on The Outbound Collective.

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

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