Waterfalls of North Georgia

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Amicalola Falls in Dawson County, Georgia, USA

The waterfalls of northern Georgia, U.S.A., are a prominent feature of the geography of that region, as well as a major focus of tourism and outdoor recreation. Many are located in state parks, national forests, wildlife management areas, and other public lands. Many are accessible—with varying degrees of ease or difficulty—via established hiking trails, and some developed areas include boardwalks, observation platforms, picnic areas, and other amenities. The Cherokee called this region "Land of a Thousand Waterfalls".[1] The third-, fourth-, and fifth-highest waterfalls in the eastern United States are located in northern Georgia.

In this discussion, North Georgia refers to the mountainous regions of the extreme northern portion of the state, an area including Banks, Dade, Dawson, Fannin, Gilmer, Habersham, Lumpkin, Murray, Pickens, Rabun, Stephens, Towns, Union, Walker, and White Counties. There are, of course, waterfalls in other sections of the state; however, due to variations in both climate and terrain they are most abundant and most dramatic in the extreme north.

Falls by county[edit]

The counties of northern Georgia

Waterfalls that are known to be located on private property and not accessible to the public are described as such or are marked (NA). It is the visitor's responsibility to respect and honor the rights of private landholders.

Those maps, coordinates, and descriptions presented here are meant only to provide approximate or relative locations. Numerous publications and online resources are available to those wishing to visit these sites, both by foot and by vehicle. As many of these sites remain in a relatively wild state caution must be exercised at all times.

Dade County[edit]

Dawson County[edit]

Fannin County[edit]

Gilmer County[edit]

Habersham County[edit]

Lumpkin County[edit]

Upper DeSoto Falls, Lumpkin County, Georgia

Murray County[edit]

Pickens County[edit]

Rabun County[edit]

Dick's Creek Falls, Rabun County, Georgia

Rabun County is not only mountainous (the Eastern Continental Divide passes through the county, which has a number of peaks whose heights surpass 4,000 feet (1,200 m) above sea level) but is also one of the rainiest areas east of the Mississippi River. These factors combine to produce many dramatic falls.

Holcomb Creek Falls, Rabun County, Georgia
L'Eau d'Or Falls—46-foot falls.
Tempesta Falls—76-foot falls.
Hurricane Falls—96-foot falls.
Oceana Falls—50-foot falls.
Bridal Veil—17-foot falls flows over a smooth "sliding rock" popular with visitors who use it as a natural water slide.
Sweet Sixteen—16-foot falls.

Stephens County[edit]

Toccoa Falls, Stephens County, Georgia
  • Toccoa Falls—dramatic 186-foot (57 m) falls located on the grounds of Toccoa Falls College in the city of Toccoa. The falls may be reached by a short, paved pathway and are accessible to the handicapped. The college charges a nominal fee for admission to the site. Toccoa Falls has erroneously been billed as the tallest free-falling waterfall in the Eastern United States and simply "the highest waterfall east of the Mississippi River". (The latter claim was previously included at the Toccoa Falls College website. More than a dozen eastern waterfalls are, in fact, taller than Toccoa Falls; Crabtree Falls in Virginia is actually the tallest waterfall in the eastern US, and Fall Creek Falls in Tennessee features the highest free-fall. A more recent edition of the college website states--correctly--that Toccoa Falls are higher than Niagara Falls.) In 1977 a dam break just above the falls devastated the college and caused thirty nine deaths. The site includes a memorial to those who perished. (34°35.64′N 83°21.666′W / 34.59400°N 83.361100°W / 34.59400; -83.361100)

Towns County[edit]

Gurley Creek Falls—220-foot falls viewable from an observation deck a short walk from the visitors center. (34°50.298′N 83°46.8′W / 34.838300°N 83.7800°W / 34.838300; -83.7800)
Joel Creek Falls—a ten-minute walk from the visitors center. (34°50.1′N 83°46.602′W / 34.8350°N 83.776700°W / 34.8350; -83.776700)

Union County[edit]

Walker County[edit]

White County[edit]

Anna Ruby Falls, White County, Georgia
Duke's Creek Falls, White County, Georgia

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ About North Georgia, accessed 28 July 2007.
  2. ^ Georgia Department of Natural Resources (2004), 2004 Guide to Georgia State Parks & Historic Sites. [[Atlanta, Georgia|]].
  3. ^ Georgia Department of Economic Development, Tourism Division (2007), Georgia Travel Guide. Atlanta.