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Principal Waterfalls of the World (1945) by C. Frank Brockman


Waterfalls Classified As to Height

ANGEL FALL
Venezuela—3300 ft.

According to an article in Natural History Magazine (Dec., 1940), this fall is formed by a stream which plunges over the edge of Mt. Auyantepui, a lofty tableland (20 miles long and about 10 miles wide) which rises abruptly from grassy savannahs which separate it from the teeming jungles of the lower elevations. The

Yosemite Falls
[click to enlarge]
Yosemite Falls
rim of this great plateau from which the stream drops is reputed to be about 8000 ft. above sea level and roughly between 5400 and 6500 ft. above the mountain’s base. The height of the fall is an estimate made by members of an expedition, sponsored by the Government of Venezuela, who flew over the fall in an airplane in 1939. It was discovered in 1937 by James Angel, explorer-aviator and soldier of fortune, whose name it bears. Since, so far as can be determined, an accurate instrumental survey has not been made of this fall, this estimate is subject to verification. It is also described in the Saturday Evening Post (7-26-41.) and in the book “Devil Mountain,” by L. R. Dennison (1942). Photographs appearing in these publications indicate that it is unbroken by ledges for the greater part of its descent. Thus, if the original estimates (which range upward to “a mile high”) can stand up under more precise studies, Angel Fall is a truly prodigious spectacle and easily qualifies as the highest free-leaping waterfall in the world. (Ref. 7, 15, 16, 27.)

YOSEMITE FALLS
Yosemite National Park, California— 2425 ft.

This, one of the most famous waterfalls in the world, is located on Yosemite Creek, a small tributary of the Merced River. The falls are formed by a succession of three drops, the uppermost being 1430 feet in height (approximately 1360 feet being in the nature of a clear or free leap), a lower fall of 320 feet (which also leaps clear of its cliff for most of this distance), and an intermediate cascade having a drop of 675 feet. The intermediate cascade includes a fall of about 100 feet. See page 7 for more detailed description. (Ref. 4, 23, 28, 33.)

SENTINEL FALLS
Yosemite National Park, Calif.— 2000 ft.

The height as noted consists, in reality, of two principal sections—the upper which is composed of a series of minor falls dropping from a series of rock ledges, each being from 50 to 200 feet in height, and the lower section composed of a more or less clear leap of 500 feet. As the name implies, it is found on Sentinel Creek, which descends to the Valley floor through a deeply cut recess on the South Valley wall just west of Sentinel Rock. Although interesting in the spring it becomes much reduced in volume by mid-summer. (Ref. 23.)

SNOW CREEK FALLS
Yosemite National Park, Calif.— 2000 ft.

Although the total height is considerable, these falls do not possess any clear leaps of consequence and are little known by the public. It is in reality a series of cascades on Snow Creek, by which that stream descends over the steep, irregular north wall of Tenaya Canyon to Tenaya Creek. The series of cascades rush boisterously down through a narrow, deep-set gorge and cannot be viewed in their entirety, except from a distant point on the Half Dome trail on the top and opposite side of Tenaya Canyon. There is no easily reached point affording such an advantage, although a section of their lower part can be viewed from a point a short distance above the Tenaya Canyon Loop Trail, 1 1/2 miles above Mirror Lake. (Ref. 23.)

KUKENAAM FALLS
Venezuela—2000 ft.

Kukenaam is the name of a mountain tableland similar to Mt. Auyantepui and Mt. Roraima, all of which are located in the remote wilderness of southern Venezuela and British Guiana. It crest, flanked by precipitous cliffs, is reputed to rise several thousand feet above the surrounding terrain. The falls are formed by the Kukenaam River which plunges over this escarpment. However, because few have seen it and, so far as can be determined, no accurate survey has been made of it, references to its exact nature and height are scanty and vague. (Ref. 4, 5, 6, 27, 37.)

Sentinel Falls
[click to enlarge]
Sentinel Falls

SUTHERLAND FALLS
New Zealand—1904 ft.

Located 16 miles from the head of Milford Sound, on the southwestern coast of the South Island, these falls were discovered in 1879 by a prospector, whose name they bear. They are formed by the Arthur River which drops over a cliff in three steps, being respectively (from top to bottom) 815, 751 and 338 feet in height. None of these drops, with the possible exception of the lower, makes a clear leap. Since its appearance is not. unlike that of Yosemite Falls it has often been termed the “Yosemite of New Zealand.” However, few people have had an opportunity to enjoy its beauty since it lies off main travel routes in the area. (Ref. 23, 27, 28.)

TUGELA FALLS
South Africa—1800 ft.

Located on the Tugela River in Natal. References to the height of these falls vary considerably and, while the majority are in agreement at 1800 ft., some place it as high as 2810 ft. in height. The latter figure undoubtedly refers to the total drop throughout a series of cascades, in addition to any specific falls that might be present, since one source of information notes that the Tugela River “hurls itself through a series of falls 2800 feet high,” another states that the “total drop of Tugela is 2810 feet,” and a third notes that “the height of the main Tugela Falls, with its three steps, is 2050 feet.” (Ref. 4, 9, 25, 27, 31, 37.)

RIBBON FALL
Yosemite National Park. Calif.— 1612 ft.

Although the highest single fall in a region outstanding for its display of such features, Ribbon Fall, unlike its more famous counterpart Yosemite Falls is not characterized by a clear leap for any considerable part of its drop. It is confined in a narrow recess in the canyon wall and splashes against the rocks as it descends. It is found on the north side of Yosemite Valley where slender Ribbon Creek pours over the great granite precipice at a point 3050 feet above the Valley floor. Since Ribbon Creek drains a relatively small area characterized by a comparatively low elevation where the winter snow pack is soon dispersed, it often disappears by late summer. In the spring and early summer, however, when the stream is swollen in volume by the melting snow, this slender plume of water presents a graceful picture as it descends along the face of the lofty precipice, its base enveloped in clouds of mist and spray as the waters plunge into the narrow confines of its limited basin. (Ref. 4, 23, 27.)

Ribbon Fall
[click to enlarge]
Ribbon Fall

KING GEORGE IV FALLS
British Guiana—1600 ft.

Other than the fact that these falls are formed by the Uitshi River, in the little known wilderness approximately 45 miles north of the Brazil-Venezuela-British Guiana boundary, little is known concerning them. (Ref. 27.)

WAPAMA FALLS
Yosemite National Park, Calif.— 1500 ft.

This, a companion to Tueeulala Falls in the Hetch Hetchy area of Yosemite National Park, pours over a steeply inclined section on the north wall of Hetch Hetchy Valley into the reservoir. It consists of about three principal drops. No recent data as to its exact height seem to be available, although John Muir stated, “It is about 1800 feet in height and seems to be nearly vertical when one is standing in front of it, though it is considerably inclined.” The topographic map of Yosemite National Park indicates a total descent of about 1500 feet. (Ref. 24.)

RORAIMA FALLS
Venezuela—1475 ft.

Mt. Roraima, a lofty mountain tableland similar to Mt. Auyan-tepui and Mt. Kukenaam, is found at the point where the boundaries of Venezuela, Brazil and British Guiana merge. This flat-topped mountain is said to be about nine miles long and 3 miles wide, with an elevation above sea level of 8600 ft., and with sheer cliffs 2000 ft. high below the edge of the plateau. During the wet season a number of waterfalls descend from points along the rim. It is probably one of these that bears the name of Roraima, but, like other falls in this same remote region, there are few definite facts concerning its nature and exact height. (Ref. 4, 6, 21, 27, 29, 31a, 37.)

KALAMBO FALLS
South Africa—1400 ft.

This is one of Africa’s most beautiful waterfalls. It plunges over a precipice in the path of the river of the same name, which forms the boundary between Northern Rhodesia and Tanganyika Territory. Although estimated variously from 705 to 1400 feet the height of this spectacular waterfall is more likely nearer the larger figure. It descends in two drops, the uppermost being about 1200 feet in height, with the lower and minor fall approximately 200 feet high. An excellent photograph will be found in the National Geographic Magazine of July, 1926. (Ref. 4, 23, 27, 28, 29, 37.)

BEAVER CHIEF FALLS
Glacier National Park, Montana— 1400 ft.

The total descent of 1400 feet consists of a series of cascades, without any single drop of appreciable size, on a small stream connecting Lake Ellen Wilson and Lincoln Lake. These are two adjoining glacial tarns found at different levels in the rugged terrain, the former being the higher. It is rarely seen. These are pictured in the National Geographic Magazine of July, 1926 (p. 108), but the name given in the text is Diamond Falls. (Ref. 20a.)

GAVARNIE FALLS
France—1385 ft.

Located on the French side of the Pyrenees, these falls descend in a series of cascades divided broadly into two units, 958 and 427 feet in height. During the period of high water they are said to be characterized by a clear leap for the entire distance. (Ref. 4, 8, 13, 23, 27, 29, 37.)

TAKAKKAW FALLS
British Columbia—1346 ft.

These are among the best known of the many waterfalls in British Columbia. They are found in the upper Yoho Valley and their total descent includes a partly free leap of about 900 to 1000 feet. Some references list these falls as being 1200 ft. in height. (Ref. 4, 23, 29, 36, 37.)

VASENDEN-FOS
Norway—1310 ft.

(Ref. 27.)

STAIRCASE FALLS
Yosemite National Park, Calif.— 1300 ft.

Consists of a succession of minor falls of little appreciable height which drop over a series of ledges on the South Valley wall behind Camp Curry. The Ledge Trail between Camp Curry and Glacier Point crosses this stream. They are much reduced in volume by mid-season. (Ref. 23.)

1—Kaieteur Fall, British Guiana (Brekenridge, Black Star). 2—Snoqualmie Falls, Washington (courtesy Puget Sound Power and Light Co., Seattle). 3—Sutherland Falls, New Zealand (New Zealand Government Publicity photo). 4—Upper Yellowstone Fall (National Park Service, Yellowstone National Park). 5—Staubbach Fall, Switzerland (Ewing Galloway, N. Y.). 6—Gersoppa Falls, India (Ewing Galloway, N. Y.)
[click to enlarge]
1—Kaieteur Fall, British Guiana (Brekenridge, Black Star). 2—Snoqualmie Falls, Washington (courtesy Puget Sound Power and Light Co., Seattle). 3—Sutherland Falls, New Zealand (New Zealand Government Publicity photo). 4—Upper Yellowstone Fall (National Park Service, Yellowstone National Park). 5—Staubbach Fall, Switzerland (Ewing Galloway, N. Y.). 6—Gersoppa Falls, India (Ewing Galloway, N. Y.).

KRIMMLER FALLS
Austria—1250 ft.

Approximately 50 miles southwest of Salzburg, a stream, formed by the discharge of the Krimml Glacier, descends in a series of three steps for the distance noted. The upper fall is said to be 460 feet high. References as to the total height of Krimmler Falls vary. One lists the total drop as 1450 feet, while another gives it as 2085 feet. (Ref. 1, 14, 27, 29.)

ROYAL ARCH CASCADE
Yosemite National Park, California— 1250 ft.

In a literal sense this is not truly a fall. Just west of the Royal Arches, on the north side of the Valley, the waters of Royal Arch Creek descend as a swift ribbon of water over the steeply inclined, smooth granite which characterizes that location. Although it generally dries up by late summer it presents a highly pleasing note in Yosemite’s spring water spectacle and is representative of a number of similar cascades in the Yosemite region and the adjoining High Sierra. (Ref. 23.)

SILVER STRAND FALLS
Yosemite National Park, California— 1170 ft.

Formed as Meadow Brook, a small tributary of the Merced River, pours over the irregularly formed south wall of Yosemite Valley in a series of cascades. This stream, which drains a very small area, is never large at best. In consequence it usually disappears by mid-summer. Because of the limited time of its appearance it is often erroneously referred to by the name of Widow’s Tears, “because they dry up so soon.” This cascade may be best viewed from the east portal of the Wawona Tunnel in the spring, at which time it will be found in the angular recess between Stanford

Royal Arch Cascade
[click to enlarge]
Royal Arch Cascade
and Old Inspiration Points. (Ref. 4, 23, 27, 29, 37.)

VALUR-FOS
Norway—1150 ft.

This, an irregularly shaped fall consisting of numerous cascades, is numbered among the many waterfalls that adorn the fjords of Norway. (Ref. 23.)

TUEEULALA FALLS
Yosemite National Park, California— 1000 ft.

One of the two principal waterfalls of the Hetch Hetchy area. It is found on the north wall of Hetch Hetchy Valley on a small stream which pours its waters into the Hetch Hetchy Reservoir. John Muir stated that it was the most graceful falls he had ever seen and compares it, in that sense, with Bridalveil of Yosemite Valley. He estimated its free descent as about 1000 feet. Matthes, however, lists its total descent at 1000 feet with an essentially clear leap of not more than 600 feet. In full flood during May and June, it generally disappears by mid-summer. (Ref. 23, 24.)

STAUBBACH FALL
Switzerland—980 ft.

One of the most widely known European waterfalls, this is found in the Sauterbrunnen Valley and is of the slender Yosemite type. It pours in a single leap from a jutting precipice, having a total height of 980 feet. (Matthes gives its height as 600 feet.) (Ref. 4, 23, 26, 27, 29, 37.)

GIESSBACH FALLS
Switzerland—980 ft.

(Ref. 29, 37.)

TRUMMELBACH FALLS
Switzerland—950 ft.

(Ref. 27, 29, 37.)

WOOLOOMUMBI FALL
Australia—900 ft.

Found on a branch of the Macleay River. This fall, according to Matthes, “not only leaps clear but shoots far out from the cliff owing to its momentum.” (Ref. 4, 23.)

FIUME-LATTE FALLS
Italy—895 ft.

(Ref. 27.)

REMBISDEL-FOS
Norway—893 ft.

(Ref. 27.)

VETTIS-FOS
Norway—853 ft.

This is another of the many falls of the Norwegian fjords which is outstanding in that its height represents an essentially clear leap. (Ref. 4, 12, 23, 29, 37.)

KING EDWARD VIII FALLS
British Guiana—840 ft.

(Ref. 27, 37.)

GERSOPPA FALLS
India—830 ft.

This, most famous of India’s falls, is found on the Sharvati River which descends over a cliff 830 feet high from the Deccan Plateau in the southern part of the peninsula. The stream is over 200 feet wide and forms four separate, scenic falls which drop from various levels known as the Raja, the Roarer, the Rocket, and La Dame Blanche (White Lady). The first, which makes an essentially clear leap from the brink of the cliff, is the highest. The latter is considered the most beautiful, being characterized by lacy cascades which stream over the rocky precipice. (Ref. 4, 23, 27, 28.)

BASASEACHIC FALL
Mexico—827 ft.

Estimates of the height of this fall range from 827 to 986 feet. Matthes states that “in the brief spring season this fall rivals the upper Yosemite in scenic splendor.” It makes an essentially clear leap and is found in the Sierra Tarahumara in the State of Chihuahua. (Ref. 4, 23.)

BELLA-COOLA FALL
British Columbia—800 ft.

Found in the upper Bella-Coola Valley is this little known but great leaping fall which, according to Matthes, is “800 feet, possibly 1000 feet high.” (Ref. 4, 23.)

BIRD WOMAN FALLS
Glacier National Park, Montana— 750-800 ft.

One of the best-known falls of Glacier National Park. They are readily observed from the Going-to-the-Sun Highway approaching Logan Pass from the west.

KAIETEUR FALL
British Guiana—741 ft.

Found on the Potaro River, in an isolated section of this region, this fall, according to Matthes, is “one of the highest falls produced by a river of considerable size.” At the brink of the fall, the Potaro is 400 feet wide. Its waters flow lazily to this point, then descend in an almost perpendicular water curtain for 741 feet, which is similar, but on a larger scale, to Vernal Fall in Yosemite National Park. At its base, enveloped in a constant cloud of mist and spray, is a foaming cataract which descends rapidly to increase the total drop to about 800 feet. (Ref. 4, 6, 23, 27, 28.)

MARMORE’S CASCADE
Italy—700 ft.

One of the famous European waterfalls. It is found near Terni on the Velino River, a tributary of the Nera. It descends an estimated distance of nearly 700 feet by a series of three falls (the first being 330 feet high) “from a tree-bordered cliff into a rocky cauldron, whence it rushes over huge boulders and through narrow gorges to make a truly exquisite picture.” (Ref. 28.)

FAIRY FALLS
Mt. Rainier National Park, Washington—700 ft.

Although the highest in Mount Rainier National Park, these are but little known to the many visitors who frequent that region. They are found on upper Stevens Creek and the total descent consists of three drops. (Ref. 27, 29, 37.)

TAUERN
Austria—660 ft.

(Ref. 29.)

FEIGUM-FOS
Norway—656 ft.

(Ref. 29.)

MULTNOMAH FALLS
Oregon, U.S.A.—650 ft.

This is one of the most famous falls in the United States and is well known to those who have driven along Oregon’s renowned Columbia River Highway. It is fed by Multnomah Creek, one of the many streams that rise upon the slopes of Mount Hood, and descends in two drops— the upper being 541 feet and the lower being 79 feet. (Ref. 23, 27.)

SKYKIA-FOS
Norway—650 ft.

(Ref. 37.)

MARADALS-FOS
Norway—650 ft.

(Ref. 29, 37.)

MALETSUNYANE FALLS
Basutoland, South Africa—630 ft.

(Ref. 29, 37.)

BRIDALVEIL FALL
Yosemite National Park, Calif.—620 ft.

Formed by Bridalveil Creek, a tributary of the Merced River, this fall descends from the lip of a V-shaped canyon, which has been eroded by the stream, dropping over a vertical precipice to within 230 feet of the Valley floor. It is one of the finest examples of a free-leaping waterfall. In the spring and early summer the melting snow, in that section of the Yosemite upland which it drains, swells its volume to considerable size and a large area nearby is bathed in continual mist as the torrent dashes into the pool and upon the rocks at the base of the cliff. The delight of photographers is the series of rainbows which are formed in the afternoon as the sun strikes this spray. As summer wanes, and the snow above the rim disappears, the volume of this fall becomes appreciably less. By late summer it generally assumes the veil-like form indicated by its name (applied by Warren Baer, editor of the Mariposa Democrat, in 1856). In the autumn, when its volume is still further reduced almost to a misty spray, its waters are occasionally wafted upward by a sudden updraft from the Valley floor. The Indian name for this fall—Pohono or “puffing winds”— refers to that feature. (Ref. 10, 23, 27, 33.)

Bridalveil Fall (Courtesy of the Yosemite Park and Curry Co.). Photo by Ansel Adams
[click to enlarge]
Bridalveil Fall (Courtesy of the Yosemite Park and Curry Co.)

Photo by Ansel Adams

TWIN FALLS
British Columbia—600 ft.

Like Takakkaw Falls, these are located in the upper Yoho Valley. Matthes states that they are “said to be about 600 feet high.” (Ref. 4, 23.)

TENAYA CASCADE
Yosemite National Park, California— 600 ft.

Found at the head of Tenaya Canyon. It is an impressive ribbon cascade of considerable volume. It is almost unknown among the waterfalls of Yosemite because of its inaccessible location. (Ref. 23.)

NEVADA FALL
Yosemite National Park, Calif.—594 ft.

This represents the first of the series of steps known as the “giant’s stairway” by which the Merced River descends from Little Yosemite to Yosemite Valley itself. Here the Merced descends 2000 feet within a distance of 1 1/2 miles and, in addition to Nevada Fall, includes Vernal Fall (317 feet) as well as numerous minor cascades and rapids. Nevada is one of the principal and most famous waterfalls in the Yosemite region and, although its volume assumes prodigious proportions in early summer when the Merced is fed by rapidly melting snow, it retains much of its interest throughout the year. It rushes through a narrow channel at the lower end of Little Yosemite Valley, writhing over the brink to leap clear of the almost sheer upper section of the precipice to dash upon the steeply inclined granite apron below. Yo-wiye (twisted fall) is its Indian name, referring to the stream as it writhes through the narrow cut at the brink. (Ref. 10, 23, 27, 28, 29, 33, 37.)

RJUKAN-FOS
Norway—555 ft.

BOWEN FALLS
New Zealand—550 ft.

As a companion to Sterling Falls, both of which have a volume similar to Illilouette Fall in Yosemite National Park, these descend as a parted curtain into the waters of Milford Sound on the southwest coast of the lower island. (Ref. 23, 27.)

VORING-FOS
Norway—535 ft.

Although Matthes states that it “makes an almost unbroken descent of 850 feet,” the majority of references list it as 535 feet high. It is one of many waterfalls found in the fjords of the Norwegian coast. (Ref. 23, 27, 29, 37.)

AFDAL-FOS
Norway—525 ft.

(Ref. 27.)

SKJAEGGELDAL-FOS
Norway—525 ft.

(Ref. 27, 29, 37.)

STERLING FALLS
New Zealand—504 ft.

In a fairly regular leap these descend into the waters of Milford Sound on the southwestern shore of the South Island. It is a companion of Bowen Falls. (Ref. 23.)

CASCADE FALLS
Yosemite National Park, California— 500 ft.

Consists of a series of beautiful cascades by which Cascade Creek, a tributary of the Merced River, descends over the rugged north slope in the lower section of Yosemite Valley. It is approximately three miles above Arch Rock Entrance Station. Nearby is the smaller Wildcat Falls. (Ref. 23.)

Nevada Fall (Courtesy of the Yosemite Park and Curry Co.). Photo by Ansel Adams
[click to enlarge]
Nevada Fall (Courtesy of the Yosemite Park and Curry Co.)

Photo by Ansel Adams

MARINA
British Guiana—500 ft.

(Ref. 37.)

HIILAWE FALLS
Hawaiian Islands—500 ft.

Found in the northern part of the island of Hawaii, these falls, said to leap fully 500 feet, are visible from Waipio Bay. (Ref. 23.)

STUIBENFALL
Austria—500 ft.

Found in the Otztal, a mountain range in the eastern Alps in the southern portion of the Tyrol. Its descent is broken into a series of leaps. (Ref. 27.)

STIMSON FALLS
Philippine Islands—500 ft.

This cataract which, according to the National Geographic Magazine (Sept., 1930), makes a total descent for an estimated distance of 500 ft. is composed of a series of cascades. It was found in the remote jungles of northern Luzon by members of the Sixth Photographic Section, U. S. Army, while on a flight over the region, who named it for Hon. Henry L. Stimson, then Governor General of the Philippines. (Ref. 27.)

GASTEIN FALLS
Austria—487 ft.

Located near Salzburg, Austria, the total height is divided into two parts. The upper fall drops 207 feet while the lower is characterized by a descent of 280 feet. (Ref. 27, 37.)

TOSA FALLS
Italy—470 ft.

The total descent, as noted above, is broken into three specific cascades. (Ref. 27.)

TEQUENDAMA FALL
Colombia—456 ft.

Although less in height but greater in volume this is somewhat similar in appearance to Nevada Fall in Yosemite National park. (See National Geographic Magazine, July, 1926 and Oct., 1940 for illustrations.) It is found but fifteen miles west of Bogota, the capital of Colombia, where the Bogota River hurls itself over the sheer precipice in its path. (Ref. 22, 23, 27, 28.)

KING GEORGE CATARACT
Cape Province, South Africa—450 ft.

(Ref. 27, 37.)

HERVAL CASCADES
Brazil—400 ft.

(Ref. 27, 37.)

AUGHRABIES or HUNDRED FALLS
South Africa—400 ft.

(Ref. 29.)

AKAKA FALLS
Hawaiian Islands—400 ft.

North of Hilo, and above Honomu, on the island of Hawaii are found these falls which, according to Matthes make “a free leap of about 400 ft.” (Ref. 23.)

ILLILOUETTE FALL
Yosemite National Park, Calif. —370 ft.

Formed as the creek of the same name, which is the largest of the tributaries of the Merced River, plunges from its hanging valley into a narrow gorge. Although viewed from a point on the Vernal Fall trail above Happy Isles the position of the stream with respect to the narrow, confining walls of its canyon is such that its beauty cannot be properly appreciated. This fall is most advantageously viewed from points on the “Eleven Mile Trail” which passes from Happy Isles to Glacier Point via Vernal and Nevada Falls. (Ref. 23, 27, 29, 33, 37.)

HORWICK FALLS
South Africa—364 ft.

(Ref. 27.)

Illilouette Fall
[click to enlarge]
Illilouette Fall

GRANITE FALLS
Mt. Rainier National Park, Washington—350 ft.

(Ref. 27, 29, 37.)

SCHLEIERFALL
Austria—330 ft.

(Ref. 27, 29.)

WALDBACHFALL
Austria—330 ft.

The total descent, as noted above, is made up of three drops. (Ref. 27.)

CASCADE d’OURSIERE
France—328 ft.

(Ref. 27.)

VERNAL FALL
Yosemite National Park, Calif.—317 ft.

One of the two principal steps in the “giant’s stairway” by which the Merced River descends from Little Yosemite to Yosemite Valley proper. Here the river, approximately 80 feet wide during early summer when it has the greatest volume, descends over the brink of a broad, vertical cliff in the form of a translucent undivided curtain of water. In the pool and upon the rocks at its base the falling waters are churned into filmy spray which bathe the canyon below the fall in a constant cloud of mist, thus accounting for the name of the Mist Trail, a narrow, rocky footpath by which one reaches the brink of this fall from the main horse trail at Register Rock. Upon the nearby rocky canyon walls grow many interesting plants and the vegetation in the vicinity is kept constantly fresh and green by moisture from the falls. It was this fact that prompted L. H. Bunnell to apply the name, Vernal, in 1851. The Indians knew it as Yan-o-pah or “little cloud,” referring to the mist already mentioned. (Ref. 10, 23, 26, 27, 28, 29, 33, 37.)

GRAND FALLS
Labrador—316 ft.

Located on the Hamilton River, approximately 300 miles from the coast, these have a total width of about 200 feet. (Ref. 4, 27, 29, 34, 37.)

VIRGINIA FALLS
North West Territory, Canada—316 ft.

(Ref. 27, 37.)

YELLOWSTONE FALL (Lower)
Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming—310 ft.

Although exceeded by many others in height and volume the nature of its surroundings makes this one of the most impressive waterfalls in the world. Located in the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone River, which makes two impressive leaps within slightly less than 1/2 mile (upper fall is 109 feet high), the beauty of this impressive fall is enhanced by the varied hues of the bordering canyon walls. (Ref. 23, 26, 27, 28, 29, 32, 37.)

SLUISKIN FALLS
Mt. Rainier Nat’l Park, Washington —300 ft.

On the Paradise River which has its source in the small glacier of the same name. (Ref. 27, 29, 37.)

CHAMBERLAIN FALLS
British Guiana—300 ft.

(Ref. 27, 29, 37.)

Vernal Fall
[click to enlarge]
Vernal Fall


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