Visitors to Lory State Park in the spring and early summer have one "must do" hike -- Soldier Canyon Falls. The trail map calls this hike #7: Waterfall Trail. And while it's short, it's a treat.
The hike starts at the Timber Trail trailhead. When you enter the park, take the first right turn after the Visitor's Center. (Get directions to the park on the Lory website.) At the far end of the parking lot is a sign that simply says, "Waterfall Trail."
Walk past the bathrooms and through the group picnic site to a second sign that says Waterfall Trail, .1 mile to Soldier Canyon Falls.
Just a few steps away the trail entered a canopy of green vegetation. Come here at the right time of year and you should already hear the water flowing in the creek next to the trail.
Cross the first wood bridge over the creek, then a few steps later, a second bridge. The cascade at the second bridge is a nice surprise as it flows out from below the third bridge.
Climb a few steps, cross that third bridge and then it's just a few more steps to where the trail ends at the waterfall's pool. Solider Canyon Falls is about 20 feet high and a nice treat, especially for such a short hike.
Want more waterfalls with little to no hiking? Check out this list. And if you're looking for more hikes, I've created an extensive list of 200+ hikes across the state. Don't miss any of my trip reports, sign up for an email alert by clicking on subscribe at the top of this page and follow me on Facebook.
Get more information about Lory State Park on the park's website.
Admission fee: $7 in 2014.
Directions: Lory State Park is about 16 miles from I-25 and Harmony Road. Because there are several turns and county roads, I highly suggest using the directions from the Lory State Park website.