The falls is accessible via a 600-metre access road off the Icefields Parkway, which connects Jasper and Banff National Parks. The falls have a drop of about 18.5 metres. Sunwapta is a Stoney language word that means "turbulent water". The falls is most spectacular in the late spring when the spring melt is at its peak.
There are two falls, a lower and an upper one. The one most people see is the upper falls, as access is easier. The lower falls are a short distance away.
The water originates from the Athabasca Glacier, and volumes are higher in early summer because of glacial melting.
It is a Class 6 waterfall, with a drop of 60 ft (18 m) and a width of 30 ft (9.1 m).
- Waterfalls of the Pacific Northwest. "Sunwapta Falls". Retrieved 2007-07-01.
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