• Activities:

    Photography, Running, Hiking, Fitness

  • Skill Level:

    Beginner

  • Season:

    Summer, Autumn

Dog Friendly
Easy Parking
Family Friendly
Forest
Picnic Area
River
Scenic
Waterfall
Wildflowers
Wildlife

Distance: 5 miles roundtrip. Hidden gem in Silverthorne, COWater crossings, fields of wildflowers, and a waterfall. Fairly easy hike. Plenty to see along the trail. Family friendly, great for kids.

Start at the Willowbrook Trailhead. You’ll hit a “Y” in the trail pretty quickly - go left and you’ll soon be at the first log bridge. There are quite a few water crossings on the trail, but they are easy to maneuver.

After hiking in the Willow Creek Open Space for a bit, you’ll enter Eagle’s Nest Wilderness and cross two more bridges as you head deeper into the forest. After a couple of gentle inclines, the trail flats out as you head into a meadow. It's wildflower wonderland in the meadow, with an incredible view of Buffalo Mountain.

After the meadow there is a gradual incline that passes a boulder field, a giant rock, and a small pond surrounded by ferns, that looks just like a fairy pond.

It’s only about 15 minutes from the pond to the falls. You can hike up the side of the falls for a close up view, or enjoy some time relaxing on the rocks below the falls. South Willow Falls is a tiered cascade tucked away in a thick pine forest. The upper falls plunge into a shallow pool and the lower part of the falls drops through a granite chute. It’s a great spot for lunch with a view.

Getting there: The Willowbook Trailhead is in the Wildernest subdivision of Silverthorne. The subdivision is north of I-70 and west of Highway 9.

If you want additional mileage, you can start from the Mesa Cortina Trailhead (8.7 miles roundtrip).

Pack List

  • Water
  • Sunscreen
  • Bug spray
  • Snacks and/or lunch
  • Sunglasses
  • Hat
  • Hiking or comfortable shoes
  • Camera
  • Leash if hiking with dog
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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

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Reviews

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The hike to South Willow falls is pleasant, and the falls themselves are worth the trip. Consider continuing on into the valley above them for spectacular views above the treeline.

12 months ago
12 months ago

We LOVED this hike. Great variety, few hikers along the way, quiet & just perfect!

over 1 year ago
over 1 year ago

Great hike and accurately described!

over 1 year ago
over 1 year ago

Jennifer Broome Explorer

I'm the traveling weather chick. I'm a television meteorologist, host and reporter based in Denver. I'm a weather expert and travel expert. I'm also a travel writer. I love travel, weather, adventure, outdoors, food, wine, fitness, hiking, skiing, and yoga.

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