As we’ve talked about in previous posts, spring is all about multi-sport days. From contests like the Pole, Pedal, Paddle to mountain biking and skiing, it’s about fun in the sun. Adventure is to be had! One of the adventures we’ve never really delved into is waterfalls. There’s something about the thundering roar of water down a sheer face that relaxes you while at the same time heightens your senses. Here’s our bucket list of the best waterfalls in North America that we want to experience in person.
Bucket List of Best Waterfalls in North America
Skiing & Waterfalling in one day
Lee Vining, California
We’re diehard skiers and snowboarders, so the idea of getting in some runs AND seeing a waterfall would be the best day for us. Start the morning out on the slopes at Mammoth Mountain, and once the snow starts getting a bit sticky, take a short 40 minute drive over to Lundy Canyon. Technically not a waterfall itself, this region is filled with quite possibly the highest number of waterfalls all in one place. Besides a lot of waterfall “action”, you’ll be exposed to reflective ponds and an array of blooming wildflowers of all different colors. Overall, this might be the most compelling waterfalling experience you can have anywhere and well worth the travel.
Fun for all ages
Stewart Falls rates annually as one of the most popular hikes in Utah. Off the back side of Mt.Timpanogos, there are multiple scenic viewpoints of the two-tiered falls. The moderate four-mile round trip hike from Sundance Resort can be enjoyed by families of all ages. Starting in Aspen groves, the trail meanders its way onto a ridgeline giving you fantastic glimpses of the falls. You then follow a steep trail down to the base of the falls. From there, you can hop right into the waterfall spray. A perfect way to cool off on a hot summer’s day.
Depot Creek Falls
Border Crossing & Adventure
Chilliwack, British Columbia
This might possibly be the most adventurous on the list. Why? Just to get to the trail head, you’ll need a 4WD truck to navigate the poorly maintained road for nearly ten miles. Once you hit the end of the road, you need to hike for another four to eight miles (depending on road conditions) which will include:
- Crossing the US/Canadian border (let the local Customs office know about this ahead of time)
- Fording the Custer Fork of Depot Creek
- Climbing up an 8 foot rock, with the aid of a rope, to get a vista of the falls
Once there, you’ll understand why all that hard work is worth it. At many points during the drop, the creek impacts the bedrock at such high angles it sends huge rooster tails exploding into the air, accompanied by clouds of mist as the water pounds its way down the mountainside.
Bridal Veil Falls
Tallest free-falling falls in Colorado
This is an iconic town not just for skiing but also for scenery AND outdoor adventure any time of year. Home to the tallest free-falling falls in Colorado, the region is steeped in mining history and the structure perched atop the falls is a reminder of this era. Built in 1907 to supply power to the Smuggler Union mine and mill, the story goes that the original owner constructed the hydro-electric plant atop the falls so he could put a Swiss-chalet style summer home on top of it. Located at the end of the box canyon, if you hike up to the top overlooking Telluride, you’ll understand why he wanted to build his home there.