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Elk Falls and Chimney Rock Trail is a 14.5 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Conifer, Colorado that features a waterfall and is rated as difficult. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from March until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Length 14.5 mi Elevation gain 2,398 ft Route type Out & Back

Dogs on leash

Hiking

Mountain biking

Nature trips

Bird watching

Forest

Views

Waterfall

Wild flowers

Wildlife

Fee

Description
Waypoints (0)

$9 entrance fee.

Weather
UV Index
Daylight
Reviews (161)
Photos (821)
Recordings (93)
Completed (576)
Andrea W
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 2, 2020
Hiking

Well maintained, nice long hike. Didn’t see the bear, but saw bear tracks and other indicators of bear presence. Left trailhead about 7:15 Sunday morning, plenty of parking and only saw a handful of hikers until the last 1-2 miles on the way back. There were a lot of mountain bikers though so be aware, they seem to come out of nowhere and scared me more than once. :) falls were beautiful and we had them to ourselves for the 15 minutes we stopped for a snack and to enjoy the offspray from the falls. Including our stop at falls, the hike took 5 hours and 5 minutes.

Tyler S
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 26, 2020
Hiking

Warning: active bear in the area he’s pretty big too. Just be loud and make your presence known and you’ll be fine, he gave me no trouble once I announced myself. Saw the bear on the switchbacks down to the pond. Fun long trail. doesn’t feel busy. Any day you get 30 ft from a bear is a great day!!

Liliana Myers
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarJuly 20, 2020
HikingFee

Long trail but there was almost no one on it. It was amazing. Arrived at 7am to Staunton no too many cars. Arrived at the falls with no one around a few people came as we were relaxing but not many. Very well marked. Didn’t see any interesting wildlife this time but I normally do there.

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Jimmy Martínez
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 11, 2020
Hiking

Completed 7/11. This is a nice, moderate trail. I would rate it on the harder side of moderate but purely because of the length. Lions Head is closed until 7/31 and we wanted to hike up there which was a bummer but that just means we will be back in the fall. Plenty of shade to rest if you need but a lot of the trail is uncovered and it was very hot today. We went up to the overlook after stopping at the falls for a snack and total hiking time was 4:30

Andrea Wu
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarJuly 11, 2020
Hiking

I did the trail to Elk Falls without going to the observation point. I came here with a friend on Saturday, arriving at around 8:15AM. The top parking lot was full already but there was still space at the lower parking lot. There's an entrance fee of $9 which is pretty high, but I guess it's worth it. The trail was enjoyable, not too steep, and signage was clear. Some of it is shaded while other parts aren't, and there were quite a few people on the trail. The pond is pleasant but Elk Falls is really small. All in all, not a bad hike. It took us about 5 hours to complete the entire hike.

Megan Hosea
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarJuly 6, 2020
HikingNo shade

Hiked on Saturday 7/4. We camped overnight and started on the trail around 7am. Not too many people on the trail as we started. More people starting as we were finishing the hike. Would recommend starting early to avoid afternoon storms (we got back right as it started). Climb down to see the waterfall is hardest part but very doable. Took a little under 6 hours with stop at waterfall for lunch. Very beautiful area and close to Denver.

Michael MacDonald
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 5, 2020
HikingFeeRockyScramble

Satisfyingly difficult trail with beautiful scenery throughout. Plenty of good vantage points to stop and take in the surroundings. Rocky and a bit of a scramble in places but that just adds to the experience. A couple of cool historic buildings along the way. The waterfall at the end is absolutely worth the journey (and very, very cold)!

John Simon
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarJuly 3, 2020
Great!

There are some difficult spots but I would not consider this a hard trail. Lots of mountain bikes but there's generally plenty of space for everyone.

Andrew Gibson
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJune 27, 2020
Hiking

Great long, relatively empty trail (we started at 6am). The incline was manageable and had increases and decreases throughout the entire thing. The constant change in elevation made for a challenging return trip, but totally worth it. Incredible forestry with some pretty great views to finish.

View Andrew's Recording
Joshua Vidal
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJune 18, 2020
Hiking

This is a fantastic hike! Great views, beautiful rock formations and fantastic conditions! Turned this into 17 miles in the park going to the falls overlook before heading to the falls. The park is beautifully maintained and the trails were phenomenal! Not too difficult in terms of incline and could be completed by beginner hikers. The waterfall is great and access to it gets you right there. The hound and I loved it! Can’t wait to come back and check out the lions head trail in August. I would give this 10 stars if I could! Got there early, and didn’t seem to crowded. Check this one out!!

Kierstin Rounsefell
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJune 18, 2020
HikingFee

I completed this trail on 06/11/2020. There is a $9 fee to get into the state park. When I arrived a little before 8am, the parking lots were not quite halfway full. Since it was a Thursday, the trails were quiet. Most of the time, I was alone. I saw some deer as well as a moose! The trails were really well maintained and marked, and the views were amazing. Such a refreshing hike! The route that I took is below. This made it more of a loop trail so that I only walked on the same path for a few small parts! My phone tracked this route to be about 11.5 miles and took me 5.5 hours. Staunton Ranch -> Bugling Elk -> Lion’s Back -> Elk Falls Overlook to Elk Falls -> Chimney Rock -> Marmot Passage -> Scout Line -> Staunton Ranch -> Historic Cabin -> Chase Meadow

Jeff Roth
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJune 16, 2020
HikingFee

It’s a long hike but I still think the overlook and falls were worth the effort. I didn’t realize you can bike this trail, I think I will try that next time.

Alex Twaroski
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarJune 15, 2020
HikingFeeNo shadeRocky

Very long and not much shade... The waterfall was cool but honestly not worth the trip. We went from Davis Ponds > Chase Meadows > Historic Cabins > Staunton Ranch > Scout Line > Marmot Passage > Bugling Elk > Chimney Rock > Elk Falls. On the way back took Staunton Ranch.

View Alex's Recording
Molly Clark
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJune 14, 2020
Hiking

Phenomenal!!!!

Kyle Heym
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJune 6, 2020
Hiking

I’m going to give it a solid 5. It was extremely fun trail with great markers and very clean. We went all the way to the outlook and it was a great day. Would highly recommend if your looking for a longer distance hike with gradual elevation gain. Would love to explore more of Staunton State Park!

Eden Sabala
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJune 5, 2020
HikingNo shade

AWESOME HIKE!!! About 7 hours to complete if you take your time and stop for breaks / about 5 hours of moving time. We saw a moose, black squirrels, chipmunks, plently of deer. Def start early to be back at your car before afternoon storms roll in. You knock out most of the miles in the first 1.5 hours until you get to the pond. After the pond to the falls, you will need to go another mile and down 300 feet to the base of the falls (steep climb down and back up). Bring plenty of water or a filter. Plenty of places to refill and keep going. Did a slightly different path but total milage was 13.5 with 1900 feet of elevation gain. A great day hike.

Joe Overman
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMay 30, 2020
Hiking

Great hike, well marked trail. Went to Elk Falls and Elk Falls overlook. Very pretty. From main parking lot was 13.6 miles. Looks like a great trail to mountain bike. Will be back

Caitlin B
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMay 27, 2020
Hiking

Beautiful day. Went about it a little different then prompted, and sooo glad we did. The overlook is worth it and doesn’t add too much mileage. We got there at 730 on a Wednesday, and it wasn’t too crowded. Chipmunks are also VERY friendly!

View Caitlin's Recording
Luke Traeger
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMay 24, 2020
Hiking

Hiked 5/24- beautiful trail, awesome conditions. Very well maintained. A pretty flat hike considering it’s CO- the length is the only tough part, but there are very few inclines or scrambles until you get to the waterfall. Only negative which is not the trail or park’s fault was that many people were not wearing masks, which the signs at the beginning of the trails were noted as required. WEAR YOUR MASK. Otherwise a beautiful place

Nesho Socanski
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMay 21, 2020
HikingFeeRockyScramble

Absolutely Amazing!!! The trail has a variety of scenery with lots of very impressive rock formations, creeks, different forests, lake, waterfall, and really amazing views. The Elk Falls are really cool, and the Chimney Rock is massive.. The hike to the waterfall and back is in fact about 11.5 miles, but if you also go to the ElkFalls Overlook (recommenced), it adds about 2.2 miles to the trip making it more like 13-14 miles. We took a couple different trails coming back and ended up with 14.2 in total. No scrambling really required but a very steep incline by the waterfall.. Went on a week day and it wasn’t busy at all. Exhausting, but well worth the trip.. I haven’t seen so many cool thinks on a single hike since Yellowstone.. This is my favorite waterfall hike near Denver!

View Nesho's Recording
Venessa Ramos
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarMay 18, 2020
HikingFeeNo shade

Arrive at 9:15 05/17 and there was a long line to get in. It moved pretty fast, took about 15ish minutes to get in. A man working had us park in the lower parking lot adding 1.2 miles total to our hike. It wasn’t super busy but some areas made it hard to social distance. Not a lot of people wearing masks. Bikers on trail that you had to step aside to let them pass. Not really shady in a lot of areas. Hike was beautiful! I’d rate it as moderate but long. Very peaceful and the waterfall was gorgeous.

Kirsten Brown
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarMay 16, 2020
HikingRocky

Very well maintained and marked trail. Wouldn’t rate it as difficult. Super crowded with people not familiar with trail etiquette. Arrived at 6am and was the first person to make it back to the falls. This hike is more like 13 miles.

View Kirsten's Recording
Olivia Hartmann
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMay 16, 2020
Hiking

Did this on an early weekday morning and had the whole trail to myself aside from a few very courteous mountain bikers! I found it to be longer than reported..my tracker said it was a little over 13 miles, similar to another reviewer. I noticed that the AllTrails route doesn’t completely follow the actual trails? So that may explain the discrepancy. Regardless, fantastic trail with great signage, amazing views, and so much wildlife!!

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