Ripley Falls – Crawford Notch, New Hampshire
Ripley Falls, Crawford Notch – Located on Avalanche Brook in Crawford Notch, New Hampshire, the 100 foot Ripley Falls is one of the more picturesque waterfalls in the White Mountains. The Arethusa-Ripley Falls Trail passes by this waterfall. And while the waterfall is impressive, the history of Ripley Falls and Avalanche Brook is intriguing.
There seems to be some confusion on who first discovered Ripley Falls. Most accounts say Henry W. Ripley and a Mr. Porter first discovered the waterfall in September 1858. But other accounts say a fisherman found the waterfall before Ripley. And another account says Henry W. Ripley was a companion of the legendary Abel Crawford (1766–1851), who discovered the waterfall while out trapping sable.
Beaver Brook Cascades – Kinsman Notch, New Hampshire
Beaver Brook Cascades, Kinsman Notch – When it comes to waterfalls in the New Hampshire White Mountains, the waterfalls in Kinsman Notch are often overlooked. I can only guess Kinsman Notch’s reputation of having rough terrain is what keeps most away from exploring this incredible Notch.
Kinsman Notch has a number of named and unnamed waterfalls, and one of the better known ones is Beaver Brook Cascades. These cascades are located on Beaver Brook, and the Appalachian Trail (Beaver Brook Trail) runs on the side of them. The earliest reference I have found to them is from the 1890s.
Fleming Flume (top section) – Carroll, New Hampshire
Fleming Flume, Elephant Head Brook – Over the summer, while doing some research, I came across a water feature in the 1907 Guide to the Paths and Camps in the White Mountains (first edition AMC Guidebook) referred to as Fleming Flume in Carroll, New Hampshire. The write-up also mentions a Fleming Fall. I finally had the chance to visit and photograph this little flume.
I have never heard of Fleming Flume or Fall and have found very limited mention of them in old books. From what I can find, they were only mentioned once in the AMC Guidebook, the 1907 edition. However, the flume does appear to be marked on the Mt Washington map in the 1940 and 1960 AMC Guides but disappears from the maps completely in the 1960s. The marks are hard to see on these maps, but they are there.
Shell Cascade – Waterville Valley, New Hampshire
Shell Cascade, Waterville Valley – Located on Hardy Brook, a tributary of the Mad River, in Waterville Valley, New Hampshire is a small, but unique, cascade known as Shell Cascade. Because of its location, this cascade isn’t visited much. It is not in a remote area by any means, but no official trail leads to it, and during times of high water it can be difficult to reach Hardy Brook. And for these reasons, its considered to be a forgotten waterfall.
Visitors to Waterville Valley and the White Mountains region have been visiting Shell Cascade since the 1800s. Reference to Shell Cascade can be found in the 1892 book “The Waterville Valley: A History, Description, and Guide” By Arthur Lewis Goodrich, and on A.L Goodrich’s 1904 map of Waterville Valley.
Ellen's Falls (top section) – White Mountains, New Hampshire
Ellen's Falls, White Mountains – Ellen's Falls is a picturesque waterfall located on Hobbs Brook, about a mile upstream from its junction with the Kancamagus Highway in Albany, New Hampshire. And though I have read visiting these falls requires bushwhacking up the side of Hobbs Brook from the Kancamagus Highway, there is actually a gated Forest Road that can be used to reach the falls.
Hobbs Brook was probably named for one of Albany’s early settlers, Ruben Derban Hobbs who had a sawmill on the brook. But before Hobbs had his sawmill on the brook a man by the name of Ellen had a sawmill on the brook, and at the time locals referred to the brook as Ellen River. So it seems likely that Ellen’s Falls are named for him. At this point, I have found only one reference to Ellen.
Birch Island Brook – Lincoln, New Hampshire
Birch Island Brook Falls, Lincoln – Looking at the above image of Birch Island Brook, near Ice Pond, in Lincoln, New Hampshire you would never think there would be a small picturesque waterfall along it. But you know the old saying, looks can be deceiving.
Over the years, I have explored numerous brooks in the White Mountains and have realized that the many of them have interesting features that offer unique photography opportunities. Birch Island Brook is an excellent example of this. And today I want to share a few scenes from along the brook with you.