Colorado: Hiking Zapata Falls


On the way to the Great Sand Dunes National Park you come to a ‘T’ in the road and a sign that points on way towards the sand dunes and the other arrow points towards Zapata Falls. After exploring the national park we decided to visit the falls since we were already in the area. No adventure left unconquered, right?

Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve

When you turn off onto the gravel road that leads up to the trail for the falls there is a sign that says “rough road.” Its not lying. Driving up that road will rattle your insides and make you wonder why you didn’t just hike up it. The view from the top of the sand dunes is worth the road conditions.

Heading back down the river from the falls

Once you actually make it to the parking area the walk up to the falls is only about half a mile but there is a much longer hike you can take up to Zapata Lake. You hear the river before you see it under the shelter of trees. The waterfall itself can be heard but not seen. To catch a glimpse of it hike up the stream and a round a bend in a crevasse. There are a bunch of rocks in the stream but you still probably won’t be able to get to the falls without getting at least one foot wet – the rocks are quite slippery. There, back in the cool shadows thunders the waterfall.

We were feeling a bit romantic – the waterfall is behind us.

All-in-all this was a fun little adventure and a beautiful hidden wonder to visit. Have you ever visited Zapata Falls? What did you think? Happy travels and remember in your wanderings – leave no trace.

Thank you KW Photography for allowing me to use your wonderful photos!


6 comments on “Colorado: Hiking Zapata Falls”

Comments are closed.