“Choose your adventure: an easy outing on maintained trail or a rugged backcountry experience!”
— Brian Smith
Views · Waterfall
Pets are only allowed on paved surfaces in the Monument. Pets are not allowed on trails.
If you decide to run the entire canyon, use the Trail Run Project mobile app
to stay on track. The Park Service also recommends bringing a compass and topographic map. The trail is unmaintained beyond the second waterfall. Check the weather as flash floods pose an imminent danger.
This point-to-point run heads directly through one of the most picturesque and remote canyons in Colorado National Monument. Depending on the time you visit, this canyon can house a few beautiful waterfalls along the way, some of which turn to ice falls in the colder months.
From the east entrance, drive 0.2 miles to the trailhead. There is limited parking available on the left. For additional parking, turn right into the Devils Kitchen
Picnic Area. The trailhead is shared with three other trails: Old Gordon Trail
, Serpents Trail
and Devils Kitchen Trail
No Thoroughfare Canyon starts with a descent from the plateau on a maintained trail before transitioning to an unmaintained route through the remote canyon. The canyon walls rise over 400 feet above you as you run in awe. Because of how isolated and primitive this route is, most visitors do not venture the entire route.
No Thoroughfare Canyon offers visitors to Colorado National Monument the chance to roam through a tight canyon in the oldest layer of rock within the park. If you follow the dry wash for about 1 mile, you'll reach the first pool, which can make a good turnaround point if you're looking for a short, 2-mile run. The pool is a beautiful little oasis that exists in juxtaposition to the otherwise arid environment. This is a great place to enjoy a picnic.
You can also continue for another 0.8 miles to the first waterfall if you're looking to run a little while longer and see more of what the canyon has to offer. The trail continues as an unmaintained route past the waterfall all the way to the upper trailhead along Little Park Road.
Flora & Fauna
Because of the existence of running water in No Thoroughfare Canyon, beautiful flora exist here. Look for various species of flowering cacti as you run.