52 Weeks of Fun

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, State of Michigan

Tahquamenon Falls


Tahquamenon Falls is the second most voluminous waterfall east of the Mississippi River, behind only Niagara Falls. It is the centerpiece of the park, and the very reason for the park’s existence, with Tahquamenon River running through its 50,000 acres.

The Upper Falls is one of the largest waterfalls east of the Mississippi. The amber-colored Upper Tahquamenon Falls earned their nickname of "Root Beer Falls" for its resemblance to a cascade of root beer. It has a drop of nearly 50 feet and is more than 200 feet across. A maximum flow of more than 50,000 gallons of water per second has been recorded cascading over these falls. In winter, snowmobile trails lead almost to the falls, and walkways are kept clear for most of the season.

Four miles downstream is the Lower Falls, a series of five smaller falls cascading around an island. Although not as dramatic as the Upper Falls, they are equally magnificent. These falls are easily viewed and photographed from the paved walkway. A quarter-mile boardwalk will take you through a thick coniferous forest, ending at the viewing platforms for an up-close experience.

The falls can be viewed from the river bank or from the island, which can be reached by rowboat rented from a park concession. The island walk affords a view of the falls in the south channel. A Tahquamenon's track chair helps visitors explore areas of the park where traditional wheelchairs might not. These off-road, electronic chairs can easily handle trails, snow, sand, and up to eight inches of water. They are available on a first-come, first-served basis at no cost.

, Lake Superior
, Wikipedia

A 52 Weeks of Fun Fascinating Fact about Tahquamenon Falls

The Tahquamenon River is noted in Longfellow's “The Song of Hiawatha,” with the line "by the rushing Tahquamenaw" where Hiawatha built his canoe.

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