Bear Falls, Oklahoma

I struggle whether to decide to include a few waterfalls as part of the collection, but when they’re designated as falls, I usually record them. Bear Falls and the other waterfalls in the Chickasaw National Recreation Area are a bit questionable. Limestone Creek flows through the park, which is beautiful even not considering the waterfalls.

But Bear Falls and the other named waterfalls seem to have been affected greatly by humans, so it’s hard to tell whether some of the falls are natural or artificial. Bear Falls looks like it could have been natural at one time, but then they added some rocks that create a pool above the falls. It’s a bit odd, but it’s still interesting to hike and see these drops on the creek. I just don’t know that I’d go out of my way to see the falls. Turner Falls is in the area, and is a much taller waterfall, though it tends to be busier. There are a few other waterfalls that I surmise are on private land that would be very interesting to visit.

Directions:

  1. From US-177 in Sulphur (at the intersection of OK-7), head south along US-177.
  2. There are two entrances that will both lead you to the same general location. The first option is to turn left onto Perimeter Road soon after that intersection. The second option is to head just under a mile south and turn left (on what might also be Perimeter Road). Why would you choose the second? Part of the drive is one-way, and the only way to get to the falls from the first entrance is to drive over the river at some point. When I was there in early March, the river over the road, and there was no way I was going to cross in my rental car. The second option avoided this river crossing.
  3. If you choose the second, southern option, you can drive directly to the sign for the falls for Little Niagara. The other falls can be accessed along the trail nearby. Bear Falls can also be accessed by pulling over along the road as you’re headed west toward the park exit.

Accessibility: 10/10 (easy)
Height: 2′
Length of Hike: roadside

Chickisaw National Recreation Area (156)

Bear Falls in March 2018

Where in the World is Bear Falls?

Little Niagara Falls, Oklahoma

I’m just now getting to my break from work for the next few months, so I’ll be posting about waterfalls more frequently. I had the chance to visit Texas and Oklahoma at the beginning of March, so I’m a bit behind.

I started off in Dallas. It was a beautiful but windy day, and headed to the Chickasaw National Recreation Area in Oklahoma, as I had researched a number of waterfalls in the recreation area. This recreation area is not far from a more widely known waterfall, Turner Falls. There seem to be a number of other waterfalls in the area, but Turner Falls and these waterfalls in the recreation area seem to be the few that are open to the public or easily accessible.

In my time hiking along the river, I encountered at least four named waterfalls. There are others in the park, though it’s not always obvious how to get to them. This is the waterfall that is the most “advertised”, as the main road leads you this waterfall to start. I have to admit…I’m a bit torn. You can tell with these waterfalls that there is clearly a “man-made” element to the falls. I’m not sure if they were natural waterfalls that we as humans altered, or whether they’re completely man-made. It’s still a beautiful hike along the river, but I can understand why Turner Falls is visited more frequently.

Directions:

  1. From US-177 in Sulphur (at the intersection of OK-7), head south along US-177.
  2. There are two entrances that will both lead you to the same general location. The first option is to turn left onto Perimeter Road soon after that intersection. The second option is to head just under a mile south and turn left (on what might also be Perimeter Road). Why would you choose the second? Part of the drive is one-way, and the only way to get to the falls from the first entrance is to drive over the river at some point. When I was there in early March, the river over the road, and there was no way I was going to cross in my rental car. The second option avoided this river crossing.
  3. If you choose the second, southern option, you can drive directly to the sign for the falls for Little Niagara. The other falls can be accessed along the trail nearby.

Accessibility: 10/10 (easy)
Height: 6′
Length of Hike: 200′ round-trip

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Where in the World is Little Niagara Falls?