Elevation: 8,829 ft
GPS: 40.202, -105.576 Google Map · Climbing Area Map
Page Views: 21,884 total · 93/month
Shared By: Ben Mottinger on Nov 29, 1999
Admins: Leo Paik, John McNamee, Frances Fierst, Monty, Monomaniac


What a gem in the park--a trivial approach by RMNP standards (about 45 minutes), a nice setting, and fat ice. This WI4 fall is about 75 feet in length, and several trees up top provide good TR anchors for a good forearm burning session. Some other flows to the right are thinner but look equally interesting.

Getting There

Take CO 7 from Lyons (like you were going to the Long's Peak trailhead) and head up the canyon. The entrance to the Wild Basin area is about 5 miles south of the Long's entrance and about 12 miles south of Estes Park. The entrance is marked with a huge sign--stay on the road and take a right at the sign to Copeland Lake. Continue on this road as far as possible--the gate to the ranger's cabin is closed in winter. Park and hike about 1 mile to the ranger cabin, then take the trailhead to the west for another 0.5 miles or so. When you see the sign for Upper and Lower Copeland Falls, continue on until you can see the falls to the left through the trees. Then, hike a little bit further and cross the stream right up the base.

Alternatively, you can walk along the road until you see the second horse trail sign (just short of the bridge that goes into the ranger cabin/trailhead area. Walk on a meandering trail along the south side of the creek past the Copeland Falls hitchrack perhaps a 1/4 miles. The ice will appear on your left.


A. Far Left, WI2-, 1p, 50', screws.
B. Mixed problem, M?.
C. Small Flow Left, WI2-3, 1p, 50', screws.
D. Firhang, WI5+ M10 PG-13, 1p, 90', TR or gear & bolts.
EF. Mixed start to Main Falls, WI4 M5-6 R, 1p, 90', TR or screws.
F. Main Falls, WI4, 90', screws.
GF. Mixed start to the Main Falls, WI4 M5 R, 1p, 90'.
H. End-O-Daze, WI5 M9 PG-13, 1p, 90', bolts, gear, & screws?
I. The Dangler, WI5 M7-, 1p, 90', TR or screws, bolts?, & gear.
J. Small Flow Right, WI5 M6, 1p.
K. Small Flow further right, WI5-6, 1p, TR.
L? The Ruff Route, M9, 2p, 100', gear.

8 Total Climbs

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Classic Climbing Routes at Hidden Falls

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes in this area.
Hidden Falls (main)
Trad, TR, Ice
WI4+ M5+
Small Flow (right)
Trad, Mixed, Ice 2 pitches
WI5 M6
The Dangler
Trad, Mixed, Ice
Route Name Location Star Rating Difficulty Date
Hidden Falls (main)
WI3-4 Trad, TR, Ice
Small Flow (right)
WI4+ M5+ Trad, Mixed, Ice 2 pitches
The Dangler
WI5 M6 Trad, Mixed, Ice
More Classic Climbs in Hidden Falls »

Sun & Shade

Weather Averages

Days w Precip
Prime Climbing Season
Malcolm Daly
Boulder, CO
Malcolm Daly   Boulder, CO
It's really hard to see the climb from the trail. Best is to stop and listen (screams, clanking screws, etc.) or keep you eyes open for a spot where the trail dips down almost to the creek. It's within a few hundred yard of passing the Falls sign and the first place the trail goes right next to the creek. Cross over there and wind you way up to the falls. Good luck Oct 5, 2001
The left flow is in, the center flow is nice and fat up the middle, but VERY chopped out, the right flow needs some more time. A few challenging mixed starts on the left and right of the main flow got us pumped early.

Had a great day here on the 01/07, but the main flow has seen a lot of traffic. A solid WI4 with a reasonable lead but solid screw placements are becoming scarce between all the steps and pockets. Jan 9, 2003
Tim Judkins
Salt Lake City, UT
Tim Judkins   Salt Lake City, UT
There is a horse trail that starts from the left side of the road about 100 yards before the ranger's station. There is a small sign for the trail, and it takes you very close to the climb, so you won't have to keep peering through the trees from the main trail. Also, it has a bridge early on, which makes it so you don't have to break trail and cross the creek on ice. Jan 2, 2004
Great intermediate climb! Easy hike route up left side to set a top rope. We used the cornice tree for an anchor point. 60m rope was too short to use trees farther back which are more secure and can give redundant anchor points. Lots of great ice left.

Climbed Feb 23, 2004. Feb 28, 2004
Due to the heavy snow and winds from the past few days, the road to parking lot was closed at the Sandbeach Trailhead Parking Lot yesterday, January 9. If you are going to go climbing at Hidden Falls, it is going to be a much longer hike in until the Park Service can plow the road open. Jan 10, 2007
Mark McConnell
Morrison, CO
Mark McConnell   Morrison, CO
I found your jacket at the base of the climb, 11/27.

Email me with a description of it and your contact info to pick it up.
mark_mcconnell@hotmail.com Nov 28, 2010
Brandon Groza
Bend, OR
Brandon Groza   Bend, OR
Found a right hand black OR glove shell up on the trail yesterday. Left it tied to the gate at the p-lot. Jan 22, 2011
Brandon Groza
Bend, OR
Brandon Groza   Bend, OR
Did the Mixed/Dry line today left of main flow. The tree is getting beat, but it is still solid enough to make the line possible for mortals. Two fixed nuts in roof no real solid pro potential (pins?) on headwall.

Check out the FA video here:

Firhang w/ Ryan Bogus and Eli Helmuth Mar 10, 2011
For GPS lovers, here's the coordinates this place:
40.201550, -105.575500. Mar 13, 2011
Denver, CO
Eckhard   Denver, CO
Is this in yet? Nov 27, 2012
Tim Stich
Colorado Springs, Colorado
Tim Stich   Colorado Springs, Colorado
There is actually no reason to cross the creek when going to Hidden Falls. What you do is walk down the road from the parking area. You will cross the creek and end up on the left side of it. Walk further and pass the horse trailer parking area. Walk further past two picnic table areas. Further still and you will see a bridge for the road to cross the creek yet again to the right. Don't cross, but go to the left on a foot path that should have many footprints in the snow. This is where a sign mentions Copeland Falls and that the trail goes on for 0.5 miles to a dead end. The dead end is Hidden Falls. You cannot see it from across St. Vrain Creek. Dec 29, 2014
I am a little confused why this waterfall (the main flow) has a WI4 rating. I can see giving the whole waterfall a WI3 rating because of the very top section (which feels like WI4), but most of the falls feels like WI2. The only vertical seems to be the very top section (10 feet, give or take).

On a different note, there has been deadfall perched over the falls for quite some time. Is there a risk to this crashing down? Has anyone pursued correcting this problem with the Park Service? Jan 2, 2016