When we visited Telluride, we knew that if we had time for only one hike, it would be to hike Bridal Veil Falls with the kids. We had read many accounts of the trail options, trail conditions, and even stopped in the visitor center to ask about the trail. So with all that information, here is what you need to know about hiking Bridal Veil Falls in Telluride with kids.
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What is so Special about Bridal Veil Falls in Telluride?
Bridal Veil Falls in Telluride is the tallest waterfall in Colorado, measuring 365 feet tall. It drops into the Bridal Veil Creek which runs throughout the area, occasionally appearing as you hike up to Bridal Veil Falls.
So grab a tasty treat at one of the bakeries in town, pack your hiking bag, and get ready to see the coolest waterfall around.
How to Get To the Bridal Veil Falls Telluride Trail
To access the Bridal Veil Falls Trail in Telluride, you’ll basically just get on the main street (Colorado Ave) in town. Then head east, past Town Park (where many fun festivals are held). The road will change into highway 145 and eventually end at the trailhead for Bridal Veil Falls.
There is a dirt parking lot and a couple porta-potties. The lot is a decent size, but not big enough to handle everyone that wants to do this hike.
We were able to get a spot, but noticed when we came back to the car after the hike that people were parked all up and down the road. I honestly don’t remember if this was allowed, so make sure to check for parking restrictions along the road if the lot is full.
Family Hiking Picks!
In June there is still snow up here!
The Main Trail to Bridal Veil Falls
Distance: 2.4 miles roundtrip
The main, rugged trail to Bridal Veil Falls is 2.4 miles roundtrip and goes through the trees as you would expect.
This trail is not recommended for families as it is a bit technical and rocky.
We usually don’t mind technical trails (in fact, our kids quite enjoy them), but the visitor center really insisted we don’t take kids on this trail. At the time (early June), not only was the trail difficult, but it was flooded with water in some spots and very muddy in others.
We opted for the secondary trail. As we hiked up, we came across many prepared and experienced-looking hikers coming down. They all had done the rugged trail up and said it was really not in great condition and had many deep water crossings, and they did not want to take the main trail back down.
We were glad we listened at the visitor center.
My point is, if the locals suggest something about hiking conditions, you should probably listen. We were grateful we didn’t take the muddy, water covered trail.
The Easy Trail to Bridal Veil Falls
Distance: 3.2 miles RT
This is the trial we opted for.
The easy trail to Bridal Veil Falls is not very interesting. In fact, it’s an OHV road that goes up to the falls. Lifted trucks and SUVS are able to drive up this road and forego a hike (though some did turn around and come back because it is pretty rough to drive in some spots).
While the trail is not very interesting, it does give beautiful views of Telluride in the distance. We also loved looking around and finding new waterfalls coming down the mountains around us.
While the terrain is much easier, it does still have a bit of incline to it. There are a few trees along the way, but it’s very sunny most of the time.
Because the trail is fairly flat and so wide, this trail stays open year round, making it a great trail for winter activities in Telluride.
The most exciting part was our own water crossing where the water was running down the mountain. The kids made their way across with rocks and logs.
I wasn’t as lucky to make it across completely dry. I slipped and had a wet foot for most of the remaining hike. Luckily we had a towel with us, so I could dry my feet mostly off.
I’d like to take the moment to also suggest you keep a lightweight towel in your hiking backpack at all times, whether on the Bridal Veil Falls Trail in Telluride or any other hike.
Snow and the massive rock at the switchback means your almost there!
As you get towards the top, you may start to see snow on the ground. Your elevation is a bit higher now and it’s slightly cooler.
You’ll start to have some switchbacks. When you get to the massive boulder, you’re nearly at the final switchback!
Don’t be disappointed in taking this easier route. It actually gives you many opportunities to see Bridal Veil Falls from different distances, and it’s beautiful at every spotting.
The Viewpoint for Bridal Veil Falls in Telluride
Once you take the OHV road up and back and forth through some switchbacks, you’ll arrive at the bottom of Bridal Veil Falls. It’s a beautiful, wooded area as you stare up at the tallest falls in Colorado.
At the top is also the Bridal Veil Historic Power Plant. It’s privately owned, but you can hike up to the very top.
We opted to enjoy the view from below so we could take in the falls in its entirety.
The falls is pretty powerful and you’ll most likely be cooling down in the thick mist that shoots off the bottom as the water drops.
Grab some great photographs and enjoy your time after hiking to Bridal Veil Falls in Telluride with kids!
Lots of mist sprays off Bridal Veil Falls in Telluride
When you’re finished, go find some of the best Pizza in Telluride before you finish your day of adventure!
FAQ about hiking Bridal Veil Falls in Telluride with kids
Can you drive to Bridal Veil Falls in Telluride?
Techinically, yes you can drive to the bottom of Bridal Veil Falls. But you must have a car with high clearance as the dirt road up is a bit rough. Lifted trucks and SUVS do best on this road.
Can you see Bridal Veil Falls from Telluride?
No, you cannot see Bridal Veil Falls from downtown Telluride. You need to exit out of town and head east on highway 145. You’ll be able to have a distant view of the falls once you arrive.
How Hard is the Bridal Veil Falls Telluride Hike?
The main hike to Bridal Veil Falls is technical, steep, and rocky. It is not suggested for kids. However, families or anyone looking for an easier hike can take the OHV road up to Bridal Veil Falls.
Where do you Park to hike Bridal Veil Falls in Telluride?
If you exit downtown Telluride out the east side and take highway 145, you will eventually end at the Bridal Veil Falls dirt parking lot near the Pandora Mill.
Is Bridal Veil Falls Worth Visiting?
Absolutely! Bridal Veil Falls in Telluride is worth a visit as it is the tallest waterfall in Colorado and surrounded by great scenery.
Wrap Up: Hiking Bridal Veil Falls in Telluride with kids
When hiking up to Bridal Veil Falls with kids, the best option is to take the OHV road. This is less technical. While it’s also less exciting, you can make it more interesting by keeping your eyes open for other waterfalls in the area. We loved finding the different water run offs along the mountains.
You’ll also want to make sure you have a towel, especially in spring/early summer. With the snow melting and running off, water levels are higher and make for some fun but wet moments.
Make sure to check out all the fun family activities in Telluride!
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