These Awe-Inspiring Views Are Worth the Trek
Crystal clear water rushes over the rugged mountain cliffs, and the mossy smell of the forest fills the air. You don’t have to be a hardcore hiker to enjoy these incredible views. Our local parks are home to waterfalls that show off Mother Nature’s handiwork at its finest. You’ll even find Pennsylvania’s tallest waterfall right here in NEPA.
Pack your camera, because these hikes offer great photo ops. We’ve rounded up some of the must-see waterfall hikes in the area, from family-friendly strolls through the park to challenging treks through the forests and ravines. Lace up your hiking boots and discover Northeastern Pennsylvania’s natural wonders.
Waterfall Hikes in NEPA:
Raymondskill Creek Trail
Raymondskill Falls is the tallest waterfall in Pennsylvania at 150 feet high. The waterfall is located along the Raymondskill Creek Trail at the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area. The trail is about 0.6 miles round-trip and features two viewing platforms.
Dingmans Creek Trail
Dingmans Ferry, PA
The Dingmans Creek Trail is another waterfall hotspot at the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area. The trail offers an easy 0.4-mile hike to Dingmans Falls, the second highest waterfall in Pennsylvania at 130 feet tall. You’ll also spot Silverthread Falls, which is 80 feet high. The trail has boardwalk paths, so most of it is stroller and wheelchair accessible.
Falls Trail at Ricketts Glen State Park
The Falls Trail at Ricketts Glen State Park boasts 21 stunning waterfalls in one hike. Make sure to stop at the majestic Ganoga Falls, the tallest waterfall on the trail at 94 feet high. The Falls Trail is steep and slippery, so come prepared with sturdy shoes. The entire trail system is 7.2 miles, but you can see most of the waterfalls by completing the upper portion, which is 3.2 miles long.
Known as “The Niagara of Pennsylvania,” Bushkill Falls features eight waterfalls within a 300-acre park. They have four different hiking trails for all ages and skill levels. The easiest trail is a 15-minute walk that will take you directly to the Main Falls, which towers at 100 feet tall. Embrace the spirit of adventure on the red trail, a two-mile trek that passes all of the falls. A trail fee is required to enter.
Lehigh Gorge Trail at Lehigh Gorge State Park
White Haven, Rockport & Jim Thorpe, PA
Buttermilk Falls and Luke’s Falls lie right along the Lehigh Gorge Trail, a 26-mile rail trail that connects White Haven and Jim Thorpe. For the easiest access, park at the Rockport trailhead. Buttermilk Falls is located less than half a mile north of the parking area, while Luke’s Falls is about half a mile to the south. The smooth gravel trail makes for an easy walk or bike ride.
Fall Brook Trail at Salt Springs State Park
The Fall Brook Trail offers a moderate one-mile hike at Salt Springs State Park. Cross the bridge at the trailhead, and you’ll find yourself deep in the forests of the Endless Mountains. Follow the gorge, and you’ll spot three waterfalls cascading over the rocky ledges.
Davis Trail at Nay Aug Park
If you’d rather stick to the urban jungle, try the Davis Trail at Nay Aug Park. This two-mile loop combines the beauty of nature with the convenience of the city. The main highlight is Roaring Brook, which carved out a deep gorge and formed a magnificent waterfall. Even the kids can tackle this easy, family-friendly hike.
Seven Tubs Recreation Area
Seven Tubs is located just five minutes from the bustle of downtown Wilkes-Barre. Wheelbarrow Run flows down the mountainside and forms the park’s unique “tubs,” the deep, glacial pools that took thousands of years to form. The trail system will take you along the ravine and through the lush forest.
Hawk Falls Trail at Hickory Run State Park
White Haven, PA
The Hawk Falls Trail at Hickory Run State Park is a scenic 0.6-mile hike. The trail is lined with thick rhododendrons that are full of pink blooms in the early summer. You’ll follow the creek and arrive at Hawk Falls, which is about 25 feet tall. The trail is easily accessible from the parking area off PA-534.
Frost Hollow Trail at Lackawanna State Park
North Abington Twp., PA
This one might not be a “true” waterfall, but it’s captivating nonetheless. The dam at Lackawanna State Park spills over into the stream at the base of the Frost Hollow Trail. Head down to the bridge for some of the best views of the water and the rocky ravine.
Waterfall Trail at Sweet Arrow Lake County Park
Pine Grove, PA
This gentle, family-friendly walking trail leads you right to the base of the falls, which are about 15 feet tall. A footbridge crosses above the cascade, providing some of the best views. The entire hike is about 0.8 miles round-trip.
Article Updated from its Original Version Published on 5/15/2019.