Tallest Waterfall in Every State
There's something about a waterfall that drives us to seek it whenever one is nearby.
Research has shown that rushing water falling over rocks releases negative ions and that these, in turn, have a positive influence on us, including lowering depression and boosting our bodies. Maybe these feel-goods are what draws us to these majestic wonders?
Thankfully, waterfalls are plentiful across the U.S. Here is the tallest waterfall in every state and stunning photos to remind you exactly where to go for a smile.
Alabama: King's Shower
Height: 396 feet
The only way to see King's Shower is by climbing deep within a cave — it's a three- to six-hour spelunk into Tumbling Rock Cave's Topless Dome, where the water falls 396 feet.
*Data comes from the World Waterfall Database.
Alaska: Thunder Falls
Height: 2,000 feet
Location: East of Petersburg
Thunder Falls actually falls from the top of Summit Glacier, which sits above LeConte Bay. Its range has been estimated between 1,800 and 2,400 feet in height, and you can view it from boats touring the bay.
Arizona: Cheyava Falls
Height: 800 feet
Location: Grand Canyon
The tallest waterfall in the state can be found on the North Rim of the Grand Canyon, just north of Honan Point at the southern end of Walhalla Plateau. You can see it by hiking.
Arkansas: Hemmed in Hollow Falls
Height: 209 feet
The National Park Service calls Hemmed in Hollow the tallest waterfall found between the Rockies and the Appalachians. You'll find it within the Ponca Wilderness Area near the Buffalo River.
California: Yosemite Falls
Height: 2,425 feet
Location: Yosemite Falls
One of the tallest waterfalls in the world is found within Yosemite National Park. It's actually made up of three cascades with the Upper falls at 1,430 feet, the Middle falls at 675 feet and the Lower falls at 320 feet.
Colorado: Rainbow Lakes Falls and West Fork Chama Falls
Height: 700 feet
Location: Woodland Park and Chama
There is a tie for the tallest waterfall in Colorado. Rainbow Lake Falls can be found near Manitou Springs, while West Fork Chama Falls can be found in the Rio Grande National Forest. Both can be reached by hiking.
Connecticut: Kent Falls
Height: 250 feet
Falling within the Litchfield Hills of the southern Berkshire Mountains, Kent Falls cascades down multiple drops within a quarter mile.
Delaware: Rockland Falls
Height: 5 feet
Location: Brandywine State Park
It's not much, but it is the largest of all the falls in the small, flat state of Delaware.
Florida: Falling Water
Height: 67 feet
Location: Falling Waters State Park
Found in Northern Florida's hills, Falling Water is found in Falling Waters State Park near the junction of I-10 and 77. A boardwalk will take you directly to it.
Georgia: Fantastic Pit Falls
Height: 586 feet
Location: Walker County
Another cave fall within Ellison's Cave is the deepest in the U.S. You'll have to descend into the cave to get to this falls that is almost as tall as Seattle's Space Needle.
Hawaii: Olo'upena Falls
Height: 2,953 feet
Listed as one of the tallest waterfalls in the world, Olo'upena falls over Haloku Cliffs into the Pacific Ocean. It's so dramatic that it's often found in several movies.
Idaho: Goat Falls
Height: 650 feet
Location: Sawtooth National Forest
Located in Central Idaho near Stanley, Goat Falls is the largest watefall in the Sawtooth Mountain. You can follow the Iron Creek Trails near Goat Lake to get to the stunning cascade.
Illinois: Wildcat Canyon Falls
Height: 125 feet
Location: Starved Rock State Park
The canyons of this state park have been carved by the Illinois River. This waterfall is seasonal, depending on the weather and time of year when the snow melts and starts flowing into the canyon.
Indiana: Fremont Falls
Height: 108 feet
Located on private property, you might have some trouble finding Fremont Falls. It it is near the junction of Fremont Falls Road and River Bluff Drive.
Iowa: Malanaphy Spring Falls
Height: 30 feet
Within the Malanaphy Spring State Preserve and the Paleozoic Plateau, you can follow a trail directly to Iowa's largest waterfall.
Kansas: Chase Lake Falls
Height: 40 feet
Location: Cottonwood Falls
The Flint Hills region is home to Chase State Lake and Wildlife Area where three falls drop a total of 40 feet. The falls change by season with spring offering the most rush.
Kentucky: Torrent Falls
Height: 162 feet
Location: South of Natural Bridge State Park
Located on private land, you cannot get to this waterfall. The next highest you'll find is Secret Sink Falls at 142 feet in Daniel Boone National Forest.
Louisiana: Rock Falls
Height: 17 feet
Location: J.C. "Sonny" Gilbert Wildlife Management Area
Catahoula Parish is home to the Sicily Island Hills, and if you follow Rock Falls Trail, you will find the tallest of the waterfalls in this area. (There are several falls along the 7-mile Big Creek Nature Trails.)
Maine: Katahdin Falls
Height: 800 feet
Location: Baxter State Park
Mount Katahdin, a part of the Appalachian Trail, has a 1-mile hike to visit Katahdin Stream Falls. Its main drop is 280 feet as it cascades down the mountain.
Maryland: Cunningham Falls
Height: 78 feet
Within Cunningham Falls State Park is a 43-acre, man-made lake surrounded by the Catoctin Mountains. Here, a hiking trail will lead you directly to Maryland's highest waterfall, which is also a cascading fall.
Massachusetts: Bear Rock Falls
Height: 300 feet
Location: Mt. Washington
As the Berkshire Mountains crosses into Massachusetts, they also provide the state with its largest waterfall. Bear Rock Falls is found on the Mount Everett State Reservation and is a lesser-known fall in the area, but it is the tallest.
Michigan: Bridalveil Falls
Height: 140 feet
Location: Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore
Michigan's Upper Peninsula is filled with waterfalls, but the biggest is seasonal and happens to fall along a sandstone cliff into the lake. It's best viewed from the water and can be found near Miners Beach.
Minnesota: Cascade Falls and High Falls
Height: 120 feet
Location: Grand Marais and Silver Bay
Cascade Falls and High Falls are another pair of tying waterfalls. Cascade Falls can be accessed via the 1-mile Superior Hiking Trail in Cascade River State Park, while High Falls is located in Grand Portage State Park.
Mississippi: Dunn's Falls
Height: 65 feet
Once used to power a gristmill, Dunn's Falls is a waterwheel fall. A visit to the falls requires a short .4-mile hike, and you can see the gristmill still standing in this historic park.
Missouri: Mina Sauk Falls
Height: 132 feet
Location: Middle Brook
The trail to visit Missouri's tallest waterfall is as steep and rocky as its falls. The loop trail can be found in Taum Sauk Mountain State Park.
Montana: Sperry Glacier Falls
Height: 2,300 feet
Location: Glacier National Park
You'll have a view of Sperry Glacier Falls as it tumbles above Avalanche Lake. The glacial water's largest drop is about 900 feet, and the glacier spills other falls from its melting sheet of ice.
Nebraska: Smith Falls
Height: 63 feet
Location: Smith Falls State Park
South of Sparks is a park surrounding the Niobrara National Scenic River. It is here the waterfall can be reached along a 1-mile trail.
Nevada: Hunter Creek Falls
Height: 35 feet
There are more than casinos in Reno. Follow a 6.5-mile, out-and-back trail to the falls along a sunny path with area views.
New Hampshire: Beaver Brook Cascades
Height: 1,000 feet
It's quite a hike to reach the Beaver Brook Cascades. In fact, the trail with the same name is considered one of the hardest on the Appalachian Trail. But the workout is worth it.
New Jersey: Greenbrook Falls
Height: 250 feet
Found inside the 165-acre Greenbrook Sanctuary preserve of woodlands, Greenbrook Falls starts at the top of the Palisades.
New Mexico: El Chorro Falls
Height: 1,330 feet
Location: Los Brazos
When the peaks of the Brazos melt their winter snow, this waterfall appears. It melts quickly, so you have to time it right to spot this waterfall.
New York: Eldest Stepsister Cascade
Height: 330 feet
One of five waterfalls falling into the Genesee River Gorge, Eldest Stepsister falls down a steep slope. The waterfalls are cleverly named after characters of Cinderella and located within Letchworth State Park.
North Carolina: Middle Creek Falls
Height: 400 feet
Location: Nantahala National Forest
Follow a 1-mile loop trail near Scaly Mountain just over the border of Georgia to find the multiple falls of Middle Creek. The forest is a part of the Blue Ridge National Heritage Area.
North Dakota: Mineral Springs Falls
Height: 15 feet
Location: Fort Ransom
The only waterfall found in North Dakota is Mineral Springs in Sheyenne State Forest. A 4.3-mile, out-and-back trail will get you to it, even if it isn't very big.
Ohio: Big Spring Hollow Falls
Height: 105 feet
It may not have a ton of water flowing from it, but the Big Spring Hollow waterfall within Hocking Hills State Park makes you feel as if you're in a cave with the water falling down into the hollow.
Oklahoma: Dripping Springs Falls and Turner Falls
Height: 77 feet
Location: Colcord and Davis
We have another tie. Dripping Springs Falls can be found in the Ozarks' Natural Falls State Park. Turner Falls can be found in the Arbuckle Mountains. Locals like to think the latter is the tallest, but both are actually the same height.
Oregon: Multnomah Falls
Height: 635 feet
Location: Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area
Just outside of Portland, a highway will take you to the Columbia River Gorge where the Multnomah Falls await. Its upper fall is 542 feet of its size, and you can take in the view from a bridge.
Pennsylvania: Darbytown Falls and Raymondskill Falls
Height: 120 feet
Location: Darbytown and Delaware Water Gap
Pennsylvania is filled with waterfalls throughout the state, but it is Darbytown and Raymondskill falls that are tied as the tallest, both near the Delaware River. Raymondskill, in the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area, is also near other massive falls and can be reached by hiking. To see the Darbytown Falls, you'll have to be on the New York side of the Delaware.
Rhode Island: Stepstone Falls
Height: 10 feet
Location: West Greenwich
Rhode Island is known as the Ocean State, but it does have one small waterfall to enjoy. Also known as Steppingstone Falls, it can be found along the Ben Utter trail.
South Carolina: Slicking Falls
Height: 400 feet
Location: Greenville County
Located on private land outside of Pickens is Slicking Falls. You can see the falls from Table Rock State Park with Mt. Pisgah as a backdrop.
South Dakota: Sioux Falls
Height: 50 feet
Location: Sioux Falls
The only waterfall on the list to appear in the middle of a city, Sioux Falls can be found in Falls Park near the ruins of a 19th century mill.
Tennessee: Buckeye Falls
Height: 475 feet
In Unicoi County, the cascading Buckeye Falls can be found on an out-and-back trail that is not often visited. The nearly 7-mile hike requires scramble and careful footing.
Texas: Capote Falls
Height: 175 feet
The only way you can see Capote Falls outside of photos is flying above it because it is on private property behind a locked gate. (Or, we suppose you could get permission from the landowner.)
Utah: Sinawava Falls
Height: 750 feet
Location: Zion National Park
Visit Zion, and head to the Temple of Sinawava to see the waterfalls that flow fullest after the spring thaw.
Vermont: Smugglers Falls
Height: 285 feet
Location: Smugglers Notch
Cascading along the valley of Smuggler's Notch is a small stream that continuously drops 285 feet after the melt of winter snow.
Virginia: Bent Mountain Falls
Height: 280 feet
Just south of Roanoke in the Blue Ridge Plateau is a gorge with Virginia's tallest waterfall. The stair-step waterfall is known as a "kettle" here.
Washington: Colonial Creek Falls
Height: 2,568 feet
Location: North Cascades National Park
The tallest waterfall in the continental U.S. may not get the same fanfare as Yosemite's, but this North Cascades' waterfall is impressive with 13 drops.
West Virginia: Batman Dome Falls
Height: 307 feet
Location: Germany Valley
It feels like you are entering Batman's lair when you enter Hellhole Cave to see its underground waterfall — experienced spelunkers only.
Wisconsin: Big Manitou Falls
Height: 165 feet
Location: Douglas County
Found within Pattison State Park south of Superior, Big Manitou Falls is a fall along the Black River.
Wyoming: Silver Cord Cascade
Height: 1,200 feet
Location: Park County
Yellowstone's tallest waterfall — and Wyoming's — is Silver Cord Cascade, which drops into the park's own Grand Canyon. You'll see it hiking the Seven-Mile Hole Trail.