Arethusa Falls, New Hampshire

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Arethusa Falls in September 2010

Looking back at a waterfall I visited nearly 10 years ago, feelings sometimes change. I wasn’t particularly impressed with Arethusa Falls, which can be found in Crawford Notch State Park along with Bemis Brook Falls and Coliseum Falls. There wasn’t much water flowing over the falls, so I don’t think they had the full effect I was expecting, considering Arethusa Falls gets a lot of fanfare. But looking back, I realize the beauty of the falls now.

Looking through old pictures, one of the other things I realize is that I visited the area over Labor Day, and it was very busy. Arethusa Falls isn’t difficult to get to, though a 3 mile round-trip hike is involved. Even then, there were so many people. It was difficult to get a full shot of the falls where 15 people weren’t in the picture. So this waterfall might take on a different feeling when there’s more water flowing and it isn’t as crowded.

Directions:

  1. The parking area for the falls is found off of route 302 in Crawford Notch State Park, which is an impressive place to find waterfalls.
  2. About 1.5 miles south of Willey House, you’ll find the parking area for the falls. Heading south, the turn will be on your right. If I remember correctly, during the busy times of the year, there is a parking lot right off the road that looks very full, but you do not have to park there. Driving further down that road leads to a parking area that is much less busy, and much closer to the trail head.
  3. At the parking area, you’ll see a private house. Head to the left, and begin to follow the trail. You’ll cross railroad tracks, and then you’ll continue on the trail for a short distance.
  4. You can follow the trail directly to Arethusa Falls, or veer off to the left on the Bemis Brook Trail to see Bemis Brook Falls and Coliseum Falls. It may be easier to do on the return hike.

Accessibility: 6/10 (moderate)
Height: 160′
Length of Hike: 3 miles round-trip

Where in the World is Arethusa Falls?

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