Cataract Falls, Cataract, IN: Upper Falls Hike and Lower Falls Flooded

The past couple of weeks have brought a lot of rain to central Indiana - a sure sign that spring is just around the bend. Intermixed with the rain have been a few days of gorgeous sunshine and temperatures in the 40s and 50s, and I have taken advantage of the beautiful days with a few stops around the area.

We'll start with the most impressive sight! On my way home from work on Friday, I took a short detour over to Cataract Falls. I figured the falls would be going well after all the rain, but I was in for a great surprise.

I parked at the Upper Falls parking lot in a space closest to the covered bridge. There are viewing platforms in this lot, but for a better view of the falls, walk across the bridge (peek through the windows if you're tall enough) and immediately turn left down a narrow gravel path. This is the start of a short, beautiful hiking trail along and above Mill Creek. Be careful when it's wet because it does get muddy and the rushing creek water comes right up to the edge of the sand in many places.

The path is easy to follow and you'll be treated to some great views of the rushing water.

I stop by Cataract Falls fairly often (the detour is only about 10 miles round trip) and I've never seen the Upper Falls rush like this. It was a treat to see and to enjoy the mist rising from the powerful water.

The path will give you an option to turn left or go straight. If you turn left, you'll be taken to the base of the Upper Falls! This is as close as I could get on Friday since the water was so high. It was definitely worth the short hike down! The trail was about half a mile.

Once I had my fill of the Upper Falls, I reversed my path up the trail, across the bridge, and into my car to quickly pop down to the Lower Falls. I almost didn't even go to the Lower Falls because I was in a hurry to get to Bloomington to meet up with friends, but I am so glad I did. It is a short three minute drive down a curvy path to get to the parking lot for the Lower Falls.

When I got to the viewpoint for the Lower Falls, this is what I saw:

The Lower Falls are completely flooded right now. Below is a photo from January 31st of this year, which is what the Lower Falls typically look like:

I almost couldn't believe what I was seeing; it was so surreal! A few other people were there, and they asked me if there was supposed to be a waterfall here. I laughed and showed them the above photo, and they were just as struck as I was. They couldn't believe it. The falls above are a 30 foot drop from top to bottom, one of the largest falls in Indiana, and they were totally submerged. 

If you can get out to any of the waterfalls around the area right now, especially if you can go see this crazy sight at Cataract Falls, do it! Then go back and check it out in a few weeks when the water levels are back to normal.
Cataract Falls, Cataract, IN: Upper Falls Hike and Lower Falls Flooded Cataract Falls, Cataract, IN: Upper Falls Hike and Lower Falls Flooded Reviewed by Maria on 11:05:00 AM Rating: 5

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