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Ute Pass Falls

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Falls hidden by a highway bridge and defaced by graffiti
Near:Colorado Springs, CO
Distance:0.4 miles round trip
Elevation Gain:250 ft
Hike Time:0.5 hours
Trail Condition:Poorly maintained trail
HikeType:Out and Back

Summary: The trailheads west from the switchback along the old road bed, then parallels Cascade Creek. The trail ends at the falls just beneath an overpass from highway 24.

These falls have been nicknamed Graffiti Falls, and quite appropriately.

Trailhead: Head West from Colorado Springs. At the Cave of the Winds stoplight turn south and head towards Manitou Springs. When the road comes to a switchback, park in the small parking area on the outside of the switchback. (Lat:38.8681 Lon:-104.92411)
Trail Guides for Ute Pass Falls:
Best Seasons: Year-Round
User Groups: Hikers, Dogs, Bikes,
Ranger Contact: None
Localhikes Reporter: This hike was submitted by Joshua Friesema, who has posted  97 other hikes on this site. To visit this reporters web site, click here.
Trail Reviews  Page 1 of 2   Submit your own review
Reviewed by BK on 7/17/2016
This waterfall has officially been known as Rainbow Falls for over 100 years. I'm not sure what "BB on 10/3/2010" was whining about below, but he could not be more wrong. It's even in the USGS catalogue as Rainbow Falls. It's a great waterfall except for the ugly graffiti tagging that has been going on for a long time. Kids today have no respect for nature. First they tag the bridge and the canyon falls, then they throw all their used spray cans and other trash into the creek. Ungrateful idiots.

Reviewed by Eric on 9/13/2015
It's nice would not call it a hike tho, just a 200 yard walk up a road. Getting kind of trashed as well lots of litter, and walked up the side trail and found where someone took a poop and left a mess of paper towels not descrete enough to hide or bury the evidence. But it was neat and my 3 year old had fun in the water.

Reviewed by L.F. on 3/10/2011
The place is beautiful and the graffiti makes it unique and fun. i hope that no one ever tries to cover it all up. recently there have been people painting over it.

Reviewed by Krista on 12/15/2010
Rainbow Falls or Ute Pass Falls is somewhere i grew up going to and continue to go to today. it use to be a wagon path to the gold mines but later turned into a tourist attraction because of the water hole and the rainbows caused by the falling water. but since the highway on ramp has been added the rainbows have dissipated and a blanket of graffiti now covers the bridge and surrounding rocks. i still have hope for this hidden treasure. and am studying it to see what i can do to help. the best connection i have found thus far is MECA an environmentalist group founded by L'aura Montgomery.

Reviewed by Brian on 11/9/2010
Just to help out with directions, the cave of the winds stoplight west of the Springs is on US 24 West, past Manitou.

Reviewed by BB on 10/3/2010
The person below me is an idiot because it's not known officially as Rainbow Falls but Grafitti Falls.

Reviewed by Melissa on 3/23/2010
The falls are very pretty all year round and are officially known as "Rainbow Falls". Visitors to the Cliff House Hotel in Manitou around the turn of the 20th century were offered guided mule rides to Rainbow Falls. Since Hwy 24 was built right over these falls, it's become a nearly forgotten gem. Very easy to get to-For Newbie: Take Highway 24 West and follow the directions from there, OR take Colorado Ave west which turns into Manitou Ave, follow all the way through Manitou Springs until you get to a fork in the road with a statue of a Native American pouring out mineral water. (Take a couple of empty water bottles to fill :) Take the right fork and when you get to the switchback, park there and walk along the creek.

Reviewed by Newbie on 8/4/2009
I'm sure the hike is great, but the review sucks. Unless you've already been there, 'west of co springs' could be one of twenty roads, since the map (and all other links) don't work. Help a brother out!

Notice: Traveling in the backcountry can be hazardous. You are responsible for informing yourself about these hazards and taking necessary precautions. Information on this web site comes from volunteer reporters and may contain errors or omissions. A current guidebook and proper equipment are essential for safe enjoyment of the hikes posted on this site.
Keys: Colorado Hiking, Colorado Trails, Colorado Hikes, El Paso County Hiking, El Paso County Trails, El Paso County Hikes

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