Heading home from Georgia, I traveled northwest of Chattanooga, Tennessee, to visit the 110-foot waterfall called Falling Water Falls.
I found a parking spot – one of six available – as I arrived, and was soon at the overlook above the falls. It’s a very short hike along Little Falling Water Creek, on top of the Cumberland Escarpment, and the view is expansive! It is, however, difficult to see the waterfall except by looking down over the edge – probably a great location for photography using a drone.
I asked two local hikers (Logan, Austin) about access to the base of the falls, though quickly decided against climbing down a rope affixed to the side of a cliff.
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Feeding into the Tellico River, another waterfall known as Baby Falls is conveniently situated less than half of a mile away. However, due to the Coronavirus pandemic and subsequent closure of most park facilities during this period, access wasn’t possible.
Bald River Falls
This was my third adventure visiting Bald River Falls – see more:
Single-sized parking spaces are periodically located along River Road, though during my visit, most were occupied by folks visiting the Tellico River for fly fishing. Luckily, I found a spot –
Visit my gallery at Pixels to purchase prints of Bald River Falls, for your home or office. Select between framed, canvas, art, metal, acrylic, poster, wood and tapestry print-types. Other items, also.
I recently had the opportunity to hike a moderately difficult trail of 5 miles out and back, to the picturesque Abrams Falls, a 20-foot tall and voluminous waterfall located in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, at Cades Cove, Tennessee.
Cades Cove is a broad, verdant valley surrounded by mountains and is one of the most popular destinations in the Great Smokies.
An 11-mile drive through Cades Cove is filled with historic sites from pioneers who settled the area, as well as stunning panoramic landscape views. Hikers should turn right at the #10 marker, following a gravel road to the trailhead for Abrams Falls. Despite the sign posted (above), there are restrooms in the parking area.
For the most part, the trail follows Abrams Creek, providing a soothing sound of running water to enjoy during ones hike. There are several changes in elevation along the way, and the trail can be quite rocky in areas – and, sometimes muddy. This is a popular trail which can become crowded, so it’s best to arrive early. And, don’t forget to bring water!
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After a short hike, I arrived at the scenic Jack Rock Falls. Standing 25-feet tall, I’d seen this waterfall on two previous occasions, each of which during relatively drier times. Following recent rains, it seemed that a return visit would be appropriate.
After taking photographs and enjoying this peaceful setting for a spell, I wondered…
…this waterfall is at a much higher elevation than Clear Creek, below. Might there be additional points of interest downstream worthy of exploration?
It seemed like a good bet, and so it began. I traversed along a steep hillside, weaved in and around trees and plants, and, when possible, climbed atop boulders hoping to glance what lay ahead. I could see some indication of an area where the rocks ended – a drop – but wouldn’t know with certainty until I arrived.
Moving downhill and around a cluster of moss covered rocks, I would soon see that which I’d hoped to find – another waterfall. Awesome! While I’m sure that others have enjoyed this spot, it was challenging to access without a trail, and I was grateful to have found such a beautiful place to enjoy.
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Following a hike at Denny Cove Falls, I drove less than 2 miles to the South Cumberland State Park near Sequatchie, Tennessee, to enjoy the picturesque 60-foot Foster Falls. The park features a paved road, restrooms, drinking fountain and a wooden boardwalk leading to an observation deck overlooking the gorge and falls.
After a short walk along a sandy path, hikers enter the forest and encounter a more difficult, steep downhill trail consisting of many rocks. There’s a suspension bridge at the base, with the falls at right. A walking stick and deliberate pace are recommended.
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I recently had the opportunity to visit Meigs Falls in the Smoky Mountains of Tennessee, near Townsend. It’s situated along the Little River, and, when the water is high during winter months, is visible only from the road. Here are a few photographs, available as prints in my gallery at Pixels:
It’s an easy hike into the gorge along Big Branch Creek, where visitors pass towering rock cliffs leading to the 65-foot waterfall with turquoise plunge pool. The trail meanders through an old-growth forest of large hemlocks and white pines, some of which are over 200 years old, before splitting left or right along the top edge of the gorge. There, the trail becomes a loop and either direction leads to the base of (and behind) the falls. However, traveling left provides an earlier view of several interesting geological sights.
Note: shallow, open cave-like structures – a.k.a., “rock houses” – line the creek gorge. These shelters were used by cliff-dwelling Woodland Indians over 3,000 years ago.
This was my second time visiting Northrup Falls, and I did so during a period of a few hours, between (several days of) rain and an oncoming thunderstorm. Hence, everything was wet – muddy trail, slippery rocks – with complete cloud cover. Nevertheless, beautiful scenery!
My First Visit
I first visited Northrup Falls last summer during the month of July, when I enjoyed warm weather, vibrant colors of nature and dry conditions. Here are a few photographs from that hike…
You can enjoy these beautiful scenes of the great outdoors year-round with the purchase of a print from my shop at Pixels. Select among these options: framed, canvas, art, metal, wood and/or acrylic. And, framed prints may also be customized to suit your wishes (size, frame, mat, paper and finish). Whether as home decor, at the office, in a lobby or cafeteria setting, waterfalls serve as an appealing, refreshing addition to your living spaces. Enjoy!
This stream was photographed recently while hiking on Mount LeConte along the trail to Rainbow Falls, located near Gatlinburg, Tennessee. Many different prints are available featuring this scenery – perfect for both the home and/or office!
This photograph features Cane Creek. I was en route to Piney Falls – located at Fall Creek Falls State Park – when I saw a pullover area and couldn’t resist taking a closer look. You, too, can enjoy this scenic image on a print in your home or office – visit my shop at Pixels for more.
Located near Tellico Plains close to the Cherohala Skyway, the 30-foot Conasauga Falls is a secluded, three-tiered waterfall not far from Knoxville or Chattanooga, Tennessee. The trail is a relatively easy 1.5 mile hike out-and-back, with an elevation gain of 370 feet. And, despite what some people have said online in review of their visit, the gravel roadway to the falls isn’t that bad – just watch for a few deep potholes.
This visit followed an earlier, same day hike to Falls Branch Falls, an adventure organized by my friend, Lara – thanks!
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I recently hiked to the 70′ Falls Branch Falls, a 2.2 mile (roundtrip) trail located in the Cherokee National Forest near Tellico Plains, Tennessee, along the Cherohala Skyway. It was the first of two hikes that day, the second being Conasauga Falls Trail – more on that another time.
I’d like to acknowledge my friend & her dog for making our hiking adventure so much fun – thanks Lara for your great planning!!!
Directions From Knoxville, TN
take I-40 W / I-75 S to Exit 60 (Sweetwater / Spring City)
turn left on TN-68 S (New Hwy 68) for 24.4 miles
turn left on TN-165 E (Cherohala Skyway / Unicoi Turnpike) for 22.4 miles
parking on left at Rattlesnake Rock
The trailhead is located at the left side of the parking lot, and descends 515-feet to the base of the falls. Along the way, hikers will encounter a sign lacking clarity as to which way to proceed. Fortunately, someone has marked the sign with an arrow pointing left to the falls (see photo, middle):
Toward the end of the trail there is a steep section with loose rocks where hikers should exercise caution, particularly when covered with leaves, or following rain when surfaces may become slippery.
Though no flowers were present along the trail at this time of year, rhododendron plants were in abundance throughout the hike. As such, a return trip to this area in the spring may be in order.
Visit my shop to select a photograph on one of many different print types available – framed, canvas, art, metal, wood and acrylic. Other items, too.
Driven by gravity along the path of least resistance, across and down varied levels of rock, the Blackburn Fork River flows into Cummins Falls to the delight of hikers on scene. Photographed near Cookville, Tennessee, this and other waterfall images are available online as prints, etc., in my shops at Pixels and/of Fine Art America.