William's Canyon Trail [CLOSED]

MODERATE 53 reviews
#22 of 124 trails in

William's Canyon Trail [CLOSED] is a 5.8 mile lightly trafficked out and back trail located near Manitou Springs, Colorado that features a waterfall and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, nature trips, and birding and is best used from February until November. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

DISTANCE
5.8 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
1502 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dogs on leash

kid friendly

birding

hiking

nature trips

walking

cave

river

views

waterfall

closed

private property

UPDATE: This trail is CLOSED to the public until further notice. It was closed by the National Forest Service after the Waldo Canyon Fire because the area is now prone to extreme flash flooding. Williams Canyon is situated, fittingly enough, at the end of Canon Ave. in the northwest section of Manitou Springs. It extends approximately 3 miles due north. The trail parallels the stream to its source. What is now a bare trickle in early October was once powerful enough to carve this canyon deep through ancient layers of limestone, dolomite and sandstone, producing cliffs that rise 300 feet above the trail. In the spring, when the waters flow more abundantly, you'll attain a better sense of what this place might have been like long ago. What makes this canyon unique in the area now are the limestone walls exposed along the canyon's upper rim. A permit is required to park near the trailhead.

hiking
19 days ago

I'm still waiting for this trail to open up? What's the delay? I lived in SoCal for many years and Wild Fires are second nature there. Grow back normally takes a few years and nature know how to regenerate. The trails just south of the Mt Blodgett trailhead are open and Waldo fire did a number on them 5 years ago. I just hiked it a few days ago and found it interesting how Nature heals itself. Please open it up

hiking
25 days ago

This has been closed by the National Forest Service. It is prone to extreme flash flooding and is very dangerous. Cave of the Winds no longer allows hiking on this trail nor do they issue any permits for hiking.

It has been closed since the Waldo Canyon fire back in 2012, and everyone who has been hiking on it since has been trespassing.

It is a beautiful trail, and they hope to re-open it someday, but it has been closed for a reason. We should respect trail closures and the decisions of the forest service.

27 days ago

It was gorgeous under a blanket of snow.

1 month ago

1 month ago

hiking
1 month ago

So what is the deal with this trail? My hiking partner wouldn't go past the "Do not enter, no hiking allowed" sign. One site said to get a pass from Cave of the Winds. Called them and said since the fire/flood they're not giving out passes. So is everyone disregarding the sign or is the person I talked to wrong?

hiking
1 month ago

How to find the trail: park in the neighborhood before the road that says residents only. Walk up that road until it turns to dirt. Follow the creek bed past the Cave of the Winds Exit sign. Follow the creek bed on the left until you see the waterfall. Then go right up the hill to the top of the waterfall. Or continue in the creek bed until you reach the waterfall.

The trail itself is beautiful, and the waterfall very nice. We found it shocking how few people we saw. Though that was appreciated.

1 month ago

One of my favorite

1 month ago

hiking
2 months ago

2 months ago

2 months ago

hiking
2 months ago

If you are looking for an extremely peaceful hike this is for you. Has extremely beautiful waterfalls and creeks. It is a canyon so you will be surrounded by rock on both sides the entire way. It is somewhat confusing at the start as it come to beginning the hike. You enter through The Cave of the Winds exit. Just use the map on the app and you will find it. Did not encounter a single person in 4 hours.

3 months ago

hiking
4 months ago

4 months ago

hiking
4 months ago

Probably got about 2 miles in before I had to return to start point, due to approaching sunset. Lovely hike in any event. Was a windy January winter day but sunny with lingering snow and icy patches on trail. The canyon trail is remarkable for the cliffs that flank either side of the creek, rising upwards of 150 ft or more. Hiking the trail is to engage an open geological text with its variegated uplifts of sedimentary rock oven many millennia. While water flow was not extensive, a couple of small waterfalls were still making their presence known. While the canyon begins very narrow (15 ft in places), the deeper you go in, the wider it gets, up to 500 meters or so near the second waypoint (waterfall).
Like other reviewers, I encountered difficulties at times finding the trail's trace on the ground. A hint: about 100 meters before reaching the first waterfall, the trail leaves the creek bed on the right and moves up the side of the gorge. The reason for this becomes obvious if you otherwise come to the waterfall via the stream bed. The trail on the right is the way to go as it gets you up and over the rocks which pinch in your passage thru the falls, especially when it's covered in ice. Notably as the canyon widens, you start to encounter mature coniferous trees: fir, cedar, bristlecone pine all happy to make their home on the canyon'a floor. Very pretty.

5 months ago