Few things in nature are more impressive than a waterfall. Whether it’s a gigantic affair with millions of gallons rushing over the edge to fall enormous distances or a tiny, beautiful drop surrounded by phenomenal beauty, waterfalls are excellent places to visit. Mike Asimos details the USA’s 10 most incredible waterfalls.
Lakes, rivers and oceans all make wonderful, fun destinations. However, of all the bodies of water, waterfalls have a special mystique that sets them apart. They are the embodiment of majesty- the special combination of the beauty and power of nature. Awe-inspiring and captivating, waterfalls are among the most popular scenic attractions around the world. Here are 10 of the most incredible waterfalls in the United States.
1. Cumberland Falls: Corbin, Kentucky
Locals call them the Niagara of the South, but the 125-foot wide Cumberland Falls aren’t known just for their size -they also produce the rare lunar rainbows knows as moonbows. While the moonbows are only visible during a full moon, the surrounding areas provide lush, scenic views during the day. With its many cottages, cabins and hiking trails, Cumberland Falls Park is full of rustic charm.
2. Palouse Falls: Lacrosse, Washington
Located in a beautiful and rugged canyon, the 200-foot-tall Palouse Falls are loud and imposing. A Native American legend says the falls were created when four giants chased a mythical creature, Big Beaver, who carved the canyon with his claws as he tried to escape. The falls are accessible via an easy hike through the impeccable beauty of the Palouse Falls Park, which makes an invigorating day trip.
3. Bridalveil Falls: Yosemite National Park, California
One of the tallest and most beautiful waterfalls in the United States, Bridalveil Falls stands 620 feet tall and is easily viewable from a major roadway. However, it’s also known for its strong windy mist that can be felt a quarter of a mile away. For a good view from a dry vantage point, get there early in the day to avoid the crowds, and stay away on weekends
4. Nevada Falls: Yosemite National Park, California
Mother of Yosemite’s gorgeous waterfalls, the 594-foot tall Nevada Falls combines beauty and adventure. Its waters fall freely, then hit the side of the cliff and create copious mist. The rapids are known as Vernal Falls. The three-mile long Mist Trail hike takes you from Vernal Falls to the of Nevada Falls and the Glacier Point vantage point, combining beauty and adventure.
5. Alamere Falls: Bolina, California
Located on California’s scenic Point Reyes National Seashore, Alamere Falls is a special viewing treat for those willing to make the 8-mile hike. Its three separate cascades drop 40 feet directly into the ocean and it’s surrounded by a vast nature preserve maintained by the National Park Service. The trails are steep and rocky, but the beach has been certified as one of the cleanest in the state.
6. Multnomah Falls: Bridal Veil, Oregon
Situated in the Columbia Gorge Natural Scenic Area, the 627-foot tall Multnomah Falls features a double drop for an incredibly picturesque view. Fed by an underground spring, Multnomah Falls lets you get close-up views from several viewing spots carved into the rock face. You can also capture the idyllic view from the stone Benson Bridge, or take a one-mile hike to the top and view the entire Columbia Gorge.
7. Yosemite Falls: Yosemite, California
One of the highlights of Yosemite National Park, Yosemite Falls is one of the highest waterfalls in the world at 2,425 feet. Fed by melting snow, Yosemite Falls is seasonal and is completely dry by the end of summer. However, from March through June you’ll be sprayed with mist, and you can see its three sections until August. It features a safe and accessible viewing area at the bottom, but the all-day hike to the top is treacherous and is only for very experienced hikers.
8. Ruby Falls: Chattanooga, Tennessee
Ruby Falls is a rare underground waterfall that’s 11,020 feet below the surface in the Lookout Mountain Caverns. Fed by natural springs and rainwater, Ruby Falls is 145 feet high and illuminated by a spectacular colored light show. It’s only accessible via a guided tour, but there are many special events including lantern tours and holiday-themed events such as Christmas Underground and Haunted Caverns.
9. Snoqualmie Falls: Snoqualmie, Washington
One of the most popular tourist attractions in the state, Snoqualmie Falls is regularly featured on the TV show ‘Twin Peaks’. This 270-foot waterfall flows over a 20 million-year-old extinct volcano and draws more than 1.5 million tourists every year. The Native American Snoqualmie tribe believes that humans originated here, and the surrounding park and trails are filled with educational signs and information about the Snoqualmie people and the local flora and fauna.
10. Niagara Falls: Niagara Falls, New York
These majestic waterfalls are located on the borders of Niagara Falls, New York and Niagara Falls, Ontario. Niagra Falls are probably the most known waterfalls in the US and is a top tourist destination. Niagra Falls is actually made up of three waterfalls: Horseshoe Falls, American Falls, and Bridal Veil Falls. Horseshoe Falls is the largest of all the Niagra Falls.