Waterfalls in Bath County, Virginia: A Homestead Resort Experience

Chasing Waterfalls in Virginia’s Bath County

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OK, I lied. While staying at the Homestead, we did do one activity that didn’t include spa time or lounging by the pool. We went explored the waterfalls in Virginia via a hike along the Allegheny Mountain gorge trail.

Waterfalls in Bath County, Virginia: A Homestead Resort Experience

And immediately, upon seeing the first cascade, I was so glad we did, too.

Waterfalls in Bath County, Virginia: A Homestead Resort Experience

We first met our group at the activities center inside of the Homestead Resort at 9am before we all shuttled over 10 minutes to where the hike begins.

Virginia Travel: A Weekend Retreat to the Omni Homestead Resort

A naturalist led us through the series of seven cascades. SVV and I hung toward the back so we could be snap-happy without annoying the other 20 hikers in our group.

Waterfalls in Bath County, Virginia: A Homestead Resort Experience

Waterfalls in Bath County, Virginia: A Homestead Resort Experience
Waterfalls in Bath County, Virginia: A Homestead Resort Experience
Waterfalls in Bath County, Virginia: A Homestead Resort Experience

Waterfalls in Bath County, Virginia: A Homestead Resort Experience

For those staying at the Homestead and looking to go on this hike, I highly recommend it for the nature aspect. You can’t access these falls without a guide, and they’re very scenic and quite unique.

Waterfalls in Bath County, Virginia: A Homestead Resort Experience

Waterfalls in Bath County, Virginia: A Homestead Resort Experience
Waterfalls in Bath County, Virginia: A Homestead Resort Experience
Waterfalls in Bath County, Virginia: A Homestead Resort Experience

Waterfalls in Bath County, Virginia: A Homestead Resort Experience

We have a lot of falls in Tennessee, and I’ve never been on a hike like this where the cascades just kept going, one after one.

Waterfalls in Bath County, Virginia: A Homestead Resort Experience

Just know that the pace is quite slow, and you’ll maybe travel a mile throughout the two-and-a-half hours. So for the active hikers, you might choose another activity; for SVV and me who wanted ample time to set up our tripod and capture the landscape, it was ideal.

Waterfalls in Bath County, Virginia: A Homestead Resort Experience
Waterfalls in Bath County, Virginia: A Homestead Resort Experience

But it was on the drive through Bath County en route for West Virginia when the magic really happened. About 20 minutes down the road, around the bend on Highway 220, we were presented with this view:

Waterfalls in Bath County, Virginia: A Homestead Resort Experience

BAM! Right off the highway. We had heard word of Falling Springs Falls, but were not expecting anything near that kind of gushing waterfall at all. SVV was so stunned, in fact, that he dropped the camera … right on its head. (Oops.)
Waterfalls in Bath County, Virginia: A Homestead Resort Experience

So naturally, we had to pull over into the parking lot and take a closer look.

Waterfalls in Bath County, Virginia: A Homestead Resort Experience

And yes, that is me on the edge of an 80-foot drop-off, because apparently I’m crazy town like that.

We’d come to find this was a favorite spot of famed Virginian (and former President) Thomas Jefferson, who was quoted as (inaccurately) calling this waterfall as “remarkable cascade…falling over a rock about 200 feet to the valley below.”

But could we go to the bottom, was the burning question? All the trails said to keep off, but a quick Google yielded so many results of people posting photos from the base of the falls.

Waterfalls in Bath County, Virginia: A Homestead Resort Experience

For once, I was wanting to break the rules, and SVV was saying, “no, woman. It says ‘keep off,’ so we’re gonna keep off.” (He would never actually talk like that, but you get the picture.)

Waterfalls in Bath County, Virginia: A Homestead Resort Experience

In this very rare instance, though, I won.

We encountered a local who could see we were perplexed and pulled over to see if he could help us out (oh, Virginians, you are a friendly bunch!). I inquired if we were allowed to hike to the bottom.

Waterfalls in Bath County, Virginia: A Homestead Resort Experience

“Oh sure,” he said. “It says ‘no trespassing,’ but no one obeys those rules. Just be careful as there’s been a lot of rain so the trail may have been washed out.”

Waterfalls in Bath County, Virginia: A Homestead Resort Experience

That was all the permission I needed.

To the right of the parking lot was an entrance where we could walk around the top of the falls. It was also full of pools filled with the clearest water I’ve ever seen in the continental United States.

Waterfalls in Bath County, Virginia: A Homestead Resort Experience

Given it was October, it was a wee bit too chilly to swim—though SVV probably would have had we had a bit more time to waste—but man, was it spectacular.

Waterfalls in Bath County, Virginia: A Homestead Resort Experience

The upper pools led to the top of the falls where we gazed down with a bit of anxiety—how were we to hike down this thing? There didn’t seem to be a clear path.

Waterfalls in Bath County, Virginia: A Homestead Resort Experience
Waterfalls in Bath County, Virginia: A Homestead Resort Experience

 

But then, facing the falls, we found a well-tread path just to the left near the road and decided to give it a try. It was a bit iffy at times, but we wound up scampering down the rocks and boulders and were to the base in under five minutes.

Waterfalls in Bath County, Virginia: A Homestead Resort Experience

I had all these epic Instagram shots planned for the bottom, but once we got there, it was so wet—the windy conditions meant the waterfall was showering us with water—that we didn’t want to keep the camera out for long, so we snapped a few shots then went back up to the top again.

Waterfalls in Bath County, Virginia: A Homestead Resort Experience

I would highly recommend anyone traveling through Bath County make this stop. Even if you don’t walk all the way down—you need good hiking shoes and good knees to make that climb—the pools around the top are just seconds from the parking lot and so, so stunning.

Waterfalls in Bath County, Virginia: A Homestead Resort Experience

We had 36 hours until we needed to be in Lexington for work, so we continued on, splitting the drive up over two days and making our home in Huntington for the night. But on the way to West Virginia, we had one more stop to make. While Googling “waterfalls in Virginia,” I came across a cool bridge that was just a few miles from Falling Springs Falls.

Virginia's Humpback Bridge, just miles from Falling Springs Falls

Super cool, right? The 100-foot-long Humpback Bridge is Virginia’s oldest covered bridge—it was originally built in the 1820s, then reconstructed in 1837 and once again in 1856 once it fell victim to not one but two floodings—and even though it’s no longer in use as a road, you can stop in Covington and park in the lot right there alongside the river to walk through it and take your photos.

Virginia's Humpback Bridge, just miles from Falling Springs Falls

Ever since I started handstanding around the world, my jumping shots took a back seat, so I decided to dust them off just for this occasion.

Waterfalls in Bath County, Virginia: A Homestead Resort Experience

Virginia and your dreamy waterfalls, I must say you are one spectacular example of Mother Nature. Keep doing your thang; we’ll be back for more very soon.

Waterfalls in Bath County, Virginia: A Homestead Resort Experience

Waterfalls in Bath County, Virginia: A Homestead Resort Experience
Waterfalls in Bath County, Virginia: A Homestead Resort Experience

Waterfalls in Bath County, Virginia: A Homestead Resort Experience

Waterfalls in Bath County, Virginia: A Homestead Resort Experience
Waterfalls in Bath County, Virginia: A Homestead Resort Experience
Waterfalls in Bath County, Virginia: A Homestead Resort Experience

Waterfalls in Bath County, Virginia: A Homestead Resort Experience

Waterfalls in Bath County, Virginia: A Homestead Resort Experience


 

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Chasing Waterfalls in Bath County, Virginia: A Homestead Resort Experience
Chasing Waterfalls in Bath County, Virginia: A Homestead Resort Experience
Chasing Waterfalls in Bath County, Virginia: A Homestead Resort Experience
COMMENTS
  • November 13, 2016

    Falling Spring Falls somehow sounds like a bit of strange name for such a beautiful sight 🙂 You guys are so active! I don’t think I would ever attempt to climb down to the base of the falls!

    • November 13, 2016

      Right? It needs a name like Majestic Falls!

  • November 13, 2016

    I love that bridge – so cool!

  • November 13, 2016
    Lindsay

    Gorgeous photos and waterfall! I swear I’be been asked three times in the last couple of weeks if I’ve been to West Virginia and now this? It’s like fate is drawing me there.

  • November 13, 2016
    Briel K.

    Beautiful scenery! Love all the pics but I think Virginia-63 is my fav. 🙂

    • November 29, 2016

      It’s such a stunning place, and I can’t believe most of my Virginia travel has been cities up until this point!

  • November 14, 2016

    Gorgeous! I had no idea these were in Virginia!

    • November 29, 2016

      Right? Such an unexpected surprise! I really have only spent time in DC and Charlottesville up until now.

  • November 14, 2016

    I think another undiscovered area in Virginia has just been discovered by you! Haha I love your activeness when visiting to someplace. Amazing photo by the way..

    Cheers

    • November 29, 2016

      Thanks so much, Susan! We love getting off the beaten path when we can =)

  • November 18, 2016

    Gorgeous! What a delight to see!! Thanks for posting!

  • November 29, 2016

    love your photos you look like you are having so much fun

  • May 5, 2017

    Love these photos from Virginia.Have you capture it from your own camera.Please let me know the model no. with the lense.

  • October 15, 2017

    The scenery there is so picturesque and jaw-dropping! I would love to visit these waterfalls and enjoy a hike there. When’s the best time of the year to go there hiking?

    • October 17, 2017

      I think fall or spring are perfect, Agness! It’s pretty humid in the South in the summer, so I’d try April/May or September/October. Green on one end, a tapestry of fall colors on the other!

  • August 16, 2018
    Alex

    Falling Spring is in fact in Alleghany County, not Bath. And it was actually 200ft tall until it was diverted for a quarrying operation to the current 80ft drop so the Jefferson quote is not innacurate. Don’t walk to the bottom anymore though, park rangers are writing tickets for trespassing.

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