The trail to Horeshief Falls and Pancake Rocks starts off at the same trail head, located next to Little Ike Tunnel off Highway 67 between Divide and Cripple Creek, Colorado.
The start of the hike is a little steep for the first .08 miles but then it kind of levels off. Here you are at the crossroads and will see a sign for Horsethief falls .05 miles ahead or you can head right for 2.2 miles to Pancake Rocks. This is were we made our right and headed up to Pancake Rocks.
The first mile of the hike consists of steep switchbacks with a 1,328 ft overall elevation gain. Make sure that you bring a lot of water and snacky bits. It can get a bit strenuous in areas but there are plenty of places surrounded with awesome views to take a break and catch your breath and we took advantage of many of them! During the spring you can become inundated with the unique call of the Clarks Nutcracker along your hike.
The scenery is amazing, you want to make sure that you start your hike early since most of the mountain scenery is to the west and you won’t want all of that awesome Colorado Sunshine in your eyes. Not only will it make it difficult to take in the sights, but it will effect any pictures that you plan to take as well.
After about a mile of hiking you will come to an area full of some pretty cool rock formations with some awesome views, don’t be fooled this is not the end of the trail nor is it Pancake Rocks, trust me when I say “You’ll know it when you see it”. Pancake rocks is exactly what it conjures in your mind; rocks that look like pancakes.
Once at Pancake Rocks the scenery is breathtaking and the rock formations are boasting with wonder. We stayed on the rocks for a bit and had some snacks and some water before heading back down the trail.
When you reach the bottom Pancake Rocks trail it is only .05 miles to head over to see Horsethief falls, which is also well worth the time. The falls can vary from trickle to a full blown raging waterfall depending on the time of year. We went in June and as you can the waterfall was pretty active!