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Garden Creek Falls in Rotary Park at the base of Casper Mountain is one of Casper’s most treasured spots. Easily accessible and a starting point for some of the area’s best hiking, watching the clear water cascade into a mountain pool is a foolproof way to remind yourself why you love nature.

With multiple picnic tables, iron foot bridges and a gazebo, the park is an ideal spot for a picturesque afternoon. It only takes a few minutes to hike from the parking area to the base of the falls, but many visitors pack a picnic lunch and make an afternoon of it. Sitting among the aspens and ponderosa pine, it’s easy to forget that you’re just a few miles from the heart of the city.

After you’ve soaked in the views of the waterfall, lace up your hiking boots to explore more of the park’s scenic wonders. The 4.5 mile Bridle Trail begins at the base of the falls and features spectacular views of the Casper area below. Reaching Split Rock is a badge of honor for locals and visitors alike. Along the way, you’ll encounter scenic overlooks, blue grouse, deer and an occasional cabin. The trail is well-maintained, well-marked and kid-friendly. In fact, the Bridle Trail has been named one of the top hikes every kid should take at least once by Red Tricycle.

New “lookout” platforms are the most recent additions to Rotary Park. Though steep, the trail to these platforms offers families with children a chance to “scale” the mountain. They also create magnificent photo opportunities that are sure to result in your favorite vacation selfies.