Bear Creek Trail

MODERATE 273 reviews
#1 of 2 trails in

Bear Creek Trail is a 4.5 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Telluride, Colorado that features a lake and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

DISTANCE
4.5 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
1,092 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dogs on leash

kid friendly

birding

camping

fishing

hiking

horseback riding

nature trips

rock climbing

snowshoeing

trail running

walking

forest

lake

river

views

waterfall

wild flowers

wildlife

bugs

rocky

snow

Bear Creek Trail is one of the most popular hiking and biking trails in Uncompahgre National Forest. The trailhead is located at the end of South Pine Street in downtown Telluride and leads to a scenic viewpoint of the 80-foot upper Bear Creek Falls at just over 1000 feet in elevation. Hikers can continue up the rugged cliffs of Bear Creek canyon on the Wasatch Trail. This mellow mountain trail winds its way through the 325-acre Bear Creek Preserve full of aspen and pine groves. Bear Creek is a public open space preserved by The San Miguel Conservation Foundation, in partnership with the town of Telluride, Colorado. Parking is available at the Mountain Village and a free gondola brings visitors to downtown Telluride. Summer visitors drawn to the natural beauty of Colorado Parks might also be interested in nearby Lizard Head Wilderness Area and Mount Sneffels Wilderness Areas.

hiking
3 days ago

Gorgeous views and waterfall with a trailhead right in town. Lots of people and dogs.

walking
4 days ago

Easy trail. Stunning waterfall at the end.

hiking
5 days ago

Hike is beautiful and very family friendly!

9 days ago

This is a great trail with beautiful views. You can get right up to the base of the waterfall!

13 days ago

Amazing views!

hiking
13 days ago

Family friendly. Crowded though still pleasant. Climb feels worth it at the Falls.

hiking
14 days ago

Great hike with beautiful scenery. I highly recommend going up to the falls then going back to where the bear creek trail meets the Wasatch trailhead and continuing along there. Wasatch is a bit more strenuous but worth it. You can also take Wasatch all the way to Bridal Veil Falls and continue along other trailheads if you want a full day of hiking. Great wildflowers along the way and much of the trail is right alongside the water.

15 days ago

Beautiful scenery on the way to the falls, but the spray from the waterfall at the end of this hard climb make it all worth while. However, it is a VERY rocky trail...hard on the feet. It’s also hard if you’re not used to altitude. We calculated 5.5 miles round trip on our GPS. Also, lots of dogs running loose, so be careful of owners that can’t control their dogs very well.

19 days ago

Totally worth the up hill trek! Waterfall is very refreshing and views are fabulous. Easy for kids.

hiking
27 days ago

Traveled with a group of 8 including a 10 year old who did great. The Trail was nice and wide for us. Steady incline the majority of the Trail, somewhat rocky. End waterfall is worth the trek!! The most enjoyable part of this hike are views going up AND coming down! 360 scenery - 5 stars

hiking
29 days ago

Unreal views

hiking
1 month ago

Really enjoyed the trail, took it slow and enjoyed the views. Push yourself to the top and it’s so worth all the views! Not terribly hard, just watch your footing at the top. Would do again!

hiking
1 month ago

This trail is well maintained and offers spectacular views along the way to the waterfall!

hiking
1 month ago

It's a beautiful hike! Very scenic and has a steady elevation all the way to the top. Breathtaking views all the way. Once you reach the waterfall, you have an excellent view of the mountains when you look back. Try to do it during the early hours of the day.

mountain biking
1 month ago

We went to Bear Creek Trail with mountain bikes couple days ago. I am a beginner so biking was though for me, please stay away from the edge if you biking! Try to keep your bike on the right side! The trail itself was very beautiful, interesting, challenging. At the end I was really proud of myself and super exhausted. Highly recommend!

hiking
1 month ago

Beautiful hike with just about all elevation gain on the way up, so a breezy walk down. You can hear the water throughout the entire hike and see the stream right off the path. The waterfall at the very top is incredible and refreshing. One of my favorite hikes ever!

hiking
1 month ago

I loved this hike!
It is walking distances from town and rewarding views almost instantly from every direction. The falls at the top are spectacular and are worth the all uphill hike.

hiking
1 month ago

Beautiful hike. You can hear water for the majority of the time. Only passed by a handful of people. Good workout but easy enough for my 70 year old dad to accompany me (:

hiking
2 months ago

Quiet. Beautiful. Elevation gain. And to top it all off, a waterfall at the end of the trail.

2 months ago

A beautiful hike where you can hear running water through most of it. The view at the top of the half frozen falls is amazing! The temperature drops drastically near the falls, bring a jacket if you are heading up in the near future.

hiking
2 months ago

Beautiful hike!! Well worth the view at the top! Waterfall was still partially frozen which was beautiful to see! Some snow on trail, but not bad at all!

2 months ago

I loved this trail! It’s now walkable without spikes but we did see snow at the top and the waterfall is mostly frozen. A long way uphill but the views are worth it!

3 months ago

Completely worth the rain and snow. It took me about 2.5 hours round trip at about 5 miles. You absolutely need spikes and gaiters at a minimum. Narrow and slippery in some spots but worth it. The snow absolutely makes this challenging. Some of the snow was up past my knees. The view from the hike is worth it!

3 months ago

Hiked April 1. Packed snow, slush, and lots of ice made for a challenging climb and return. Only saw a couple other people during this less busy time. Gorgeous prize at the end!

hiking
3 months ago

Snow packed trail. Yak Trax and hiking poles came in handy as the climb became more difficult near the falls. A spectacular hike.

hiking
6 months ago

This trail kicked my butt! It is uphill all the way which makes for a beautiful view...and an easy down hike. It had 6" of snow and the trail at the top is actually before the big square rock (per the local that was there). Straight up to your right...hardest part of the climb! I fell 4 times just in this 100' climb area.

hiking
6 months ago

Steep hike! We did this hike both in December 2016 in three feet of fresh snow and again this December 2017 with no snow and both versions were tough! The entire hike is uphill.

When we did the hike during a fresh winter storm, we made it to the end but the falls were not very visible with all the snow. Doing the hike this winter without snow was MUCH better, not just because it wasn't as exhausting, but because we were actually able to see the falls at the end. Lots of icy patches on the trail and microspikes are highly recommended rather than going off trail and unnecessarily destroying more of the trail.

Both times we lost track of the trail at the very end. When you reach the big square rock (when the falls start to become visible) you need to go right (uphill) near that rock. We went left past that rock and that trail does NOT lead to the falls.

hiking
7 months ago

This trail is relatively hard, but well worth the hike. The views from the waterfall are absolutely stunning!

8 months ago

Great view at the end, in mid October the falls were frozen over but the path was dry. Only one or two patches of ice that were very avoidable.

9 months ago

Beautiful hike.

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