I’ve had the worst case of cabin fever lately between recovering from surgery and the subzero temperatures. By last weekend I was willing to brave the cold weather if it meant getting out of the house a bit. We had heard that the waterfall at a nearby county park was frozen and was quite an impressive sight to see. After looking online, I discovered that there were actually 7 waterfalls within a half hour drive of us. So we bundled up and headed out to see some beautiful frozen waterfalls.
I know most of my readers aren’t in Ohio, so I won’t include detailed directions on the route we took. At the end of this post, I include some tips for finding frozen waterfalls in your own area. If you do happen to be in southwest Ohio though, we planned our route based on this post on the My Miami County blog.
By far the prettiest waterfall we saw on our outing was Charleston Falls near Huber Heights Ohio and it was the only one that was completely frozen. Charleston Falls is a fairly low volume waterfall that slows to a trickle during the summer. I think the low volume is what allows it to freeze completely. Just gorgeous! This is the side view of the frozen falls. From what we could tell, the ice was about 4 feet thick.
Another of our favorites was Ludlow Falls. Ludlow Falls used to be pretty famous to locals due to the fact that volunteer firefighters used to decorate the falls with Christmas lights every year. I have fond memories of visiting their light display as a child. Unfortunately they stopped doing the display about 10 years ago because of the cost involved, and nearly everyone has forgotten about the waterfall. Although Ludlow Falls wasn’t frozen completely, it was still quite a beautiful sight to behold.
Tips for Exploring Frozen Waterfalls in Your Area
- Plan your route ahead of time. When I was looking online, I discovered the Go Waterfalling website. It has pictures and directions to waterfalls all over the US. You can also Google your state + “waterfalls”.
- Do a Google image search for the waterfall name + “frozen” to see if the waterfall actually freezes and is worth a visit in the cold. High volume waterfalls may not freeze at all, although the ice that forms around them may still be pretty to see.
- Dress in lots of layers to stay warm, especially if a long hike is involved. You can always remove layers if you get overheated.
- Bring along a water bottle. Just because it is cold outside doesn’t mean that you can’t get dehydrated.
- Let someone know where you are going and what time you expect to be back, especially if the frozen waterfalls are in a remote area or will involve a long hike.
- Be prepared for slippery trails due to ice and snow. A set of inexpensive trekking poles are great for helping you keep your balance and can be used for hiking all year long. I never hike without a hiking stick because a fall while we were out hiking is how I initially ruptured the disc in my back.
- Know when the sun sets in your area and plan to be done with your hike well before the sun goes down.
- Don’t forget to take a camera along. You will probably find a ton of gorgeous winter views to capture along your hike.
We had so much fun exploring the frozen waterfalls in our area. I hope this inspires you to get out and explore some of the pretty winter scenery in your area of the country. For more fun day trip ideas, be sure to visit my Family Road Trip Pinterest Board. So tell me… Do you have any frozen waterfalls in your area?