The Cataracts

Legend

Confirmed Access
NYC Area Beaches
Point of Interest
State or Town Park
Unknown or Unofficial

This is a beautiful area, with two separate areas for swimming. There is a calmer area above the main falls with small pools and various small waterfalls. This area would be good for children if they can do a slightly strenuous hike. The other area is below the main waterfall, which is difficult to get to and not recommended for children. This pool is secluded and gorgeous, it is accessed by crawling through a small tunnel that the river flows through opening up into a pool surrounded on all sides by tall cliffs and a two tiered waterfall.

There is a parking lot near a small concrete bridge that crosses Frye Brook. The trail begins alongside the stream that this bridge crosses over, and there is a small sign saying, “The Cataracts Trail.” Directly across from the parking lot there is something that looks like it might be the trail, but it isn’t. Follow the blue blaze trail, but be careful, as sometimes it is hard to follow and there are bigger paths that diverge from it. The trail can be very steep at times, and muddy with lots of thick roots, so use caution. This is a difficult trail.

Hike about 10-15 min. and you’ll come to a picnic area with a table, and then follow a small trail to the right down to the river. Here there are two medium sized pools about 3-4 feet deep and some waterfall cascades 20-30 ft long.  You can hike a little downstream to reach the top of the falls, but be very careful as it drops off quickly.  The bottom of these falls is where a the secret pool is but DO NOT TRY TO CLIMB DOWN THE FALLS.  Instead, hike back down the trail until the trail follows alongside the stream (see picture), and from here hike upstream.  Hiking upstream was pretty easy, though there are big boulders at first. All of a sudden you’ll come to an almost vertical section of large boulders. You can either try to hike over these boulders (this is strenuous, and you would need good upper body strength), or you can follow the river under a natural rock tunnel(see picture). Past this is where the large pool is, about 15 ft. deep, with clear shadowed water. This area is surrounded by 60ft cliffs, and you should explore with caution.  The waterfall is broken into two parts, and in the middle there is another pool probably about 5 ft. deep. The rocks were slippery and we couldn’t access this middle pool, we only saw it from the view from the top.

Dogs seem to be allowed, but it might be difficult for them.

More trail info:

http://www.mainetrailfinder.com/trails/trail/cataracts-trail

Location Details

  • 15 min.
  • +44 38.477, - 70 51.318
  • Difficult

Location Tags

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follow stream here to lower pool or continue on trail to upper area
upper area
upper area
upper area
upper area
upper area
view from top to lower pool
follow the river through the tunnel to the pool
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