4 Local Favorites: Waterfalls

Waterfall 1

SMALLS FALLS
Don’t come here if you’re looking for miles and miles of hiking trails. It’s more of an exploratory picnic area – there are footpaths that wind along the river and converging, babbling creeks, swimming holes and the thunderous, cascading waterfalls. Easily accessible footbridges with nice postcard views greet you at the entrance. Challenge yourself by navigating rocks the size of bowling balls along the paths to the top of the falls with great overlooks. This is a wild area with steep cliffs, so keep children and pets close by. There are a dozen or so large picnic benches in the parking lot, as well as toilet facilities in this natural, easily accessible area.Waterfall 2

ANGEL FALLS
This one is a short half-mile hike in that crosses several fast streams. Once you arrive, Angel Falls wows with a 90-foot drop, the largest in Maine. Follow the red blazes on the trail over a footbridge, through the rocky path in the forest. The impressive falls form the shape of an angel’s wing during high water, giving the falls its name.Waterfall 3

WEST MOUNTAIN FALLS
About 30 miles northeast of Rangeley lies West Mountain Falls. Access the trailhead at the Sugarloaf Mountain golf course. It’s a short third of a mile hike to the quiet, scenic area on the Carrabassett River. It’s an open spot that is great for a relaxing picnic. Take a dip at the base of the falls, but don’t forget, the mountain runoff water is always chilly!Waterfall 4
CASCADE STREAM GORGE
Cascade Stream Gorge was listed in the Maine State Planning Office’s Register of Critical Areas in 1978 because of its unique natural, scenic and geological features. The stunning gorge, reached by a short hike through the forest, drops 90 feet into the stream below. This rugged area is about 4 miles south of Rangeley. The hike provides opportunities for photographing wildlife, the rushing, tumbling falls and a host of native plants. Be sure and keep children and pets away from the edge of the rock cliffs.Waterfall 5

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About the Author

About the Author: Pat Barcas serves as staff writer and photographer for RTX Traveler Magazine, based in Asheville, NC. His favorite RTX destinations are on the beach: Orange Beach, Alabama, New Smyrna Beach, Florida, and Murrells Inlet, South Carolina. .

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