A photographer's dream, this cascade is a multitude of waterfalls pouring from smaller ledges—making for spectacular wide shots and closeups alike.
While the name sounds like it may stem from Cherokee origin, the 150-foot high, near-vertical cascade actually was named by loggers from West Virginia, who were reminded of the Mingo Falls in their home state. The Cherokees, however, had long dubbed it Big Bear Falls, despite its being fed by Mingo Creek. To avoid the abundant crowds at this popular sightseeing destination, try heading out early in the morning.
An obvious trail starts from the parking area and climbs the bank via 158 steps. It then levels off for the second half of the distance to the falls.
Leave No Trace -- Seven Principles1. Plan Ahead and Prepare
2. Travel and Camp on Durable Surfaces
3. Dispose of Waste Properly
4. Leave What You Find
5. Minimize Campfire Impacts
6. Respect Wildlife
7. Be Considerate of Other Visitors
For more details, visit www.lnt.org
©1999 by the Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics
Heed posted warning signs indicating danger and stay on established trails. Never climb on or around waterfalls and never play in the water above a waterfall. Rocks can be slippery and it's easy to lose your balance especially with bare feet. Currents near waterfalls can be extremely swift even in areas further upstream. Never jump off waterfalls or dive into plunge pools at the base of waterfalls. Rocks and logs can be hidden beneath the surface of the water. Often waterfall pools have swirling water or currents that can drag and keep you underwater. Even if you have seen other people enjoy playing around waterfalls, be aware they have been lucky to escape unharmed. Waterfalls are constantly changing with varying water flows and erosion of the rocks around them. The current from one place to the next may be faster than you anticipate and the arrangement of rocks or other debris such as logs in the plunge pool is ever changing.