Aguasabon Falls, Ontario

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Aguasabon Falls in April 2012

Aguasabon Falls is another of the impressive waterfalls in Ontario near the Lake Superior shoreline. A very short distance from the Transcanadian Highway 17, you can find Aguasabon Falls dropping 110′ into a gorge, which then turns sharply and heads downstream into Lake Superior.

It’s an impressive sight, though it is a bit difficult to get a full view of the falls with the trees in view. And yet the geology around the falls is stunning. There’s something about the rock formations around Lake Superior that is amazing, and Aguasabon Falls doesn’t disappoint.

It’s very close to the Transcanadian Highway, and it’s also a very short hike to the falls. If you’d like to explore further down the gorge, you can also drive down a few other roads and explore the creek/river, where you’ll find Lower Aguasabon Falls. It’s nowhere near as tall as Aguasabon Falls, though it’s a great way to see both Lake Superior and the river.

Directions:

  1. From Transcanadian Highway 17 in Terrace Bay, turn right onto Augasabon Gorge Road (assuming that you are headed east initially).
  2. Drive to the end of Augasabon Gorge Road, and the short hike to the falls will start here.

Accessibility: 9/10 (easy)
Height: 110′
Hike: 0.3 miles round-trip

Where in the World is Aguasabon Falls?

Lower Aguasabon Falls, Ontario

Near the town of Terrace Bay, you can find the relatively tall Aguasabon Falls. Searching around, I had read that there may be another falls further downstream on the Aguasabon River. I remembered that it was supposed to be near the beach/shoreline, and so I tried to figure out someway to see if the falls were there and also easily accessible.

Well, they are easily accessible, though maybe not obvious. It took me a little extra time to find them, considering that at one point I ended up along a road that was clearly not leading to a beach area. I backtracked, and found the sign that was indicating the beach (or maybe it was to the docks). I followed that sign, and after a short but winding drive, I ended up at the beach. Looking upstream, the falls were in sight.

I decided to explore a little bit. There was a trail (Casque Isles Trail) that ran parallel to the river, but that did not lead to any closer views of the falls. Instead, the best way to get closer to the falls is to walk VERY close to the river. There are enough rocks and sand that this is not difficult to do, and you will end up standing in front of the falls. The total drop on the river at this point is larger than it first appears. I’d guess it’s probably 15-20′, though no single drop is that tall. If you decide to visit Aguasabon Falls, take the time to visit its smaller relative. Even if the falls don’t excite you, you’ll still be rewarded with beautiful views of Lake Superior.

Directions:

  1. From Transcanadian Highway 17 in Terrace Bay, turn right onto Lakeview Drive (assuming that you are headed east initially).
  2. Almost immediately turn left onto Cartier Drive.
  3. Drive a short distance to Beach Road. There should be a sign indicating a golf course in that direction. Turn left onto Beach Road.
  4. Drive to the very end of Beach Road. You should be at the mouth of the Aguasabon River, and from there, the falls are in view.

Accessibility: 10/10 (easy, you can see the falls from the parking lot), 8/10 (easy/moderate) to get a closer view
Height: ~20′
Hike: None necessary (though short hike to the falls possible)

Lower Aguasabon Falls in late April 2012

Where in the World is Lower Aguasabon Falls?

Rainbow Falls, Ontario

I took a short weekend trip to Thunder Bay at the end of April, and one of my goals was to try and hit a number of waterfalls along the Trans-Canada Highway. Many of the interesting waterfalls are found along or near the main highway. Rainbow Falls is some distance west of the Schreiber/Terrace Bay area, and on my initial journey east, I actually passed the park the falls are located in, Rainbow Falls Provincial Park. The signs seemed to indicate that it was a campground entrance, but in reality it was the entrance to the park.

It ended up that I turned and started driving back west the same day. I then turned into the signs I had originally passed. Since it was the end of April, the park was actually “closed”, to my surprise. You could turn onto the main road in the park, and park your car in a small area near the main gate…But the gate was actually closed to prevent anyone from driving further into the park.

In this case, I just decided to start hiking along the main road. Normally, you would be able to drive down this road, and get much closer to the falls. The hike along the main road doesn’t add a considerable amount of time to your journey, and it is relatively enjoyable. Once you get to the parking area designated for the falls, you can begin exploring. There are numerous parts to the falls, though the whole set of drops cannot be photographed easily.

Stairs lead you up and down near the falls. This is very nice, but may also limit your ability to explore portions of the falls. In late April, this specific falls seemed to be flowing pretty well, and so that may have been a very good thing that visitors were unable to deviate. The falls are interesting, but in the end, you may be frustrated by the inability to capture the “whole” falls, or really the complexity of the falls.

Directions:

  1. The falls are relatively easy to find, as they are right off of the Trans-Canada Highway (Highway 17). They are not too far west of Schreiber, which is a small town. They are a more significant drive from Thunder Bay.
  2. If you are headed west on the Trans-Canada Highway, the entrance to the park will be on your right. As I said, I think the sign also indicates a campground.
  3. Depending on the time of year, the gate to the road leading closer to the falls may or may not be open. There may be a fee to enter, though there was no gate attendant and I don’t remember there being a self-pay station.

(Note:  I support state and provincial parks, and have no problem paying for entry into parks. Ontario, though, often does not have gate agents, and instead has self-pay kiosks. Entry into many of the parks in Ontario is at least $5.50 for an hour or two, and the kiosks I’ve visited only accept coins…Therefore, plan on bringing a lot of change! It’s a slight annoyance, I guess.)

Accessibility: 9/10 (easy, stairs!)
Height: ~80′ (don’t quote me on this one)
Hike: 1 mile round-trip (approximately, depends on how far you go along trails)

The lower portion of Rainbow Falls in April 2012, with some barely-visible portions of the falls.

The uppermost portion of the falls.

Where in the World is Rainbow Falls?