The Broadmoor Seven Falls is a breathtaking natural wonder located in Colorado Springs, Colorado, and is a must-see for anyone visiting the area. This series of seven waterfalls cascade down a dramatic 1,250-foot-tall box canyon, surrounded by the majestic beauty of the Rocky Mountains. Visitors can experience the awe-inspiring beauty of the Broadmoor Seven Falls while hiking the 224 steps to the top of the falls or simply enjoying the breathtaking views from the observation deck (via the elevator). Whether you’re looking for a peaceful escape or a thrilling adventure, the Broadmoor Seven Falls is the perfect place to experience the beauty of nature.
1. Easy To Get To
The Broadmoor Seven Falls is one of Colorado’s most popular tourist destinations. The falls are located in a box canyon on the south side of Cheyenne Mountain in the Pike National Forest. However, don’t make the mistake of driving to the front gate of the Seven Falls entrance. You will be disappointed and tune around to park at the Norris Penrose Center (1045 Lower Gold Camp Rd). There is plenty of parking in an open dirt lot, where cars can park however they see fit. Under the shade of two trees and a sign for shuttle pick up, a Broadmoor employee will scan your ticket and attach your wristband before allowing you onto the bus.
After a 15-minute bus ride, visitors are dropped off at the front entrance to enjoy the park. Although the Broadmoor Seven Falls said the tram within the park was not intended for all guests to ride (it’s predominantly to assist any guests with mobility issues to the end of the canyon and restaurant 1858), all guests from my bus were ushered from the bus to the in-park tram. If you prefer hiking from the entrance, a .8-mile paved path runs upstream along the river and leads to the Seven Falls.
I was relieved that I didn’t have to drive down the mountain after hiking every path and climbing every stair. Dealing with crowds in a busy parking lot is not something I look forward to after a long day. Taking the bus to the parking area allowed me to unwind and search for a place to eat after a tiring day of hiking.
2. The History of Seven Falls
The Broadmoor Seven Falls is more than just a pretty place to look at. It is also a place of great history and culture. For centuries, the Seven Falls has been a sacred place for the native peoples of the area. Today, it is a popular destination for tourists from all over the world who come to experience its beauty and learn about its rich history.
In 2023, Seven Falls will celebrate its 140th year as a popular destination in Colorado Springs. In 1883, visitors paid ten cents to park along the roadside to admire the state’s captivating natural wonder. While the property has seemingly always been a tourist attraction, the most significant improvements were made in 1946 with the addition of a tunnel and elevator for viewing the falls from Eagle’s Nest. Additionally, rainbow lights were added to enhance the visitor experience for nighttime viewing of Seven Falls, extending the beauty beyond the sun setting over the mountain ridge.
3. The Unique Beauty of the Falls
The falls are made up of seven tiers of cascading waterfalls that drop a total of 180 feet. There isn’t a bad view, but the best way to get a bird’s eye view of the falls is from the Eagle’s Nest overlook, which provides the most expansive view, perfectly framing the entire length of the seven cascading waterfalls.
During my visit, ice sheets covered large portions of the waterfall and river below. Sharp icicles dangled from the granite cliffs. Following the trail to Midnight Fall led me to a small frozen pond. The water flowed over the rocks and disappeared below the thick layer of ice. Daring hikers walked over the ice like baby deer to have their photos taken. I envisioned witnessing the ice giving way, leading these hikers over the falls to their deaths. I quickly turned around, wanting nothing to do with this stupidity.
As you hike along the trail, you’ll find informative signs about the native plants. These signs provide interesting facts for hikers to learn about the trees and plants that provide shade along the path.
4. A Great Workout
Once you climb the 224 steps to the Falls, you can explore additional hiking trails that lead to smaller spots like Midnight Falls. If you’re up for a moderate hike, you can take the trail to Inspiration Point, where you can get an elevated view of the Box Canyon. From this location, you can see Mt. Cutler, the City of Colorado Springs, and the plains beyond. This location is also where author Helen Hunt Jackson found inspiration.
Hiking to Inspiration Point almost made me forget I was in a touristy park. While the hike was steep at times, the closer I was to reaching the top, the fewer people occupied the trail. There was a stark contrast to the number of visitors crowded at the entrance of Seven Falls than at the top of Inspiration Point. I spent 30 uninterrupted minutes at the mountain’s peak, marveling at the scenery, the green blanket of trees covering the mountains dotted with white patches of melting snow.
*Another excellent hiking workout is Manitou Incline Trail. It is located just 20 minutes North of the Broadmoor Seven Falls. Manitou Incline is challenging, covering a distance of 0.9 miles and featuring a 41% grade with 2,768 steps. You can learn more about this hike by reading my post “5 Tips for a Successful Manitou Incline Hike“.
5. Soaring Adventure
There’s more than one way to enjoy the scenery of Seven Falls. With the purchase of an additional ticket, visitors can experience the thrill of soaring over the Seven Falls rock formations and rivers while zip lining on the ten courses ranging from 250 to 1,800 feet in distance.
There are three courses to choose from, each range in experience and time. The shortest course consists of just ziplining, while the longest course (4-hour course) includes two custom-built suspension bridges spanning 200 feet each and a controlled rappel of 180 feet to the canyon floor.
6. A Photographer’s Paradise
Standing at the bottom of the waterfall, I regretted not bringing my camera instead of just relying on my phone camera. Carved out of a box canyon by the South Cheyenne Creek, the seven cascading waterfalls offer a breathtaking view. At Seven Falls, photographers of all niches can find inspiration. The most obvious option is to take pictures of the scenic landscapes and capture the mesmerizing movement of water as it bounces continuously from one stone to another.
A photographer can easily fill a memory card by taking long-exposure waterfall photos. Nevertheless, the natural backdrop is ideal for capturing special moments such as engagement or family portraits. The tall canyon walls reflect light in all directions while maintaining soft and gentle lighting, making it an ideal location for capturing the perfect shot.
7. The Broadmoor Seven Falls Dining
Most outdoor hikes require you to bring your food and water, or you risk perishing on the side of the mountain. At Broadmoor Seven Falls, many food options are available to cater to everyone’s preferences and budget. The gift shop offers snacks such as popcorn, granola bars, and drinks. Just outside the gift shop is the Food Truck Pavilion, where various options are available from each Food Truck. There is also a covered area along the river for visitors to eat and take a break from the excitement of climbing the stairs along the falls.
The culinary jewel of the Broadmoor Seven Falls is the 1858 Restaurant. The restaurant is adorned with cowhide-covered chairs and memorabilia from the Colorado gold rush. Guests can savor Colorado cuisine that is seasonal, local, and wood-fire-grilled.
Lunch & Dinner
Opened during park hours, lunch is served la carte. The menu offers a variety of options, including appetizers, soups, salads, and sandwiches. One of our signature dishes is the Colorado Rocky Mountain Red Trout, served with golden rice, sea island red peas, summer squash, and corn.
Dinner is served between 6 pm and 8 pm, offering a three-course Prix Fixe Menu for $92. The menu has a variety of appetizers, mains, and desserts to choose from, and the price includes admission to the park.
Apart from the main dining room, guests can also enjoy a meal outdoors on the patio, where they can eat amidst a cascading waterfall and admire the stunning views of the canyon.
If you’re looking for a picturesque destination in Colorado, Broadmoor Seven Falls is definitely worth a visit. The falls are absolutely stunning, and the entire area is kept in excellent condition. Visitors can also enjoy a range of exciting activities, including hiking, zip lining, and capping off the day with a meal at 1858. If you are planning a trip to Colorado Springs, add the Broadmoor Seven Falls to your itinerary. You will not be disappointed!
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