New England Waterfalls


Manchester, Vermont

RATING: 2.0 / 5.0 stars (Good) Cascades At The Equinox Preserve, Vermont
(see below for larger image and additional photographs)
STATE: Vermont
COUNTY: Bennington
TOWN: Manchester
PARK: Equinox Preserve
TYPE: Horsetail
HEIGHT: 20-foot total drop
WATER SOURCE: Unnamed stream
TRAIL LENGTH: 1.0 mile one-way
TRAIL DIFFICULTY: Moderate to initial view of falls; difficult to base of falls
HIKING TIME: 45 minutes one-way
ALTITUDE GAIN: Up 450 feet, down 30 feet
WHEN TO VISIT: May to June
SWIMMING: Not Possible and/or Prohibited
DELORME ATLAS: 2007: Page 25, H-9 (the falls are not marked on the VT atlas)
2015: Page 71, B-4 (the falls are not marked on the NH/VT atlas)
COST TO VISIT: Free (as of 2017)
LENS TO BRING: Wide-angle (14-35mm) and/or standard (35-70mm)
GPS-TRAILHEAD: 43.162833, -73.082500
GPS-WATERFALL: 43.164500, -73.096000
COMPASS: 50° excluding declination (the falls face southeast)
INCLUDED IN BOOK?: No, the falls are not currently included within the guidebook
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It is highly recommended that you download a trail map before trying to find these falls. There is a network of trails in the preserve, and it is fairly easy to get confused by them. You can download a trail map on the official website of the Equinox Preservation Trust. Alternatively, there is currently a trail map in a glassed-in kiosk about 200 feet into the trail that you can take a photograph of with your phone or camera.

From the parking area for the preserve, walk past the gate and in 200 feet you will reach an informational kiosk. After 0.2 mile, bear left onto the red-blazed Red Gate Grail and the blue-blazed Blue Summit Trail. You'll pass the yellow-blazed Flatlanders Pass Trail and the yellow-and-black-blazed Snicket Trail on your left 0.1 mile later. Continue following the red-blazes and after hiking for 0.5 mile, bear left to stay on the red-blazed Red Gate Trail as the blue-blazed trail heads right. About 400 feet later, bear left to stay on the red trail as the black-blazed Aspen Trail goes right. Hike 0.1 mile further on the red-blazed trail and continue straight onto the turquoise-blazed Trillium Trail, which will immediately cross a footbridge. Hike 200 feet beyond the footbridge and turn right onto the white-blazed Mt. Bluff Trail. As you hike moderately uphill on the Mt. Bluff Trail, you'll be heading upstream with the brook on your right, although it'll be out of view most of the time. In 250 feet, the eastern junction of the Robins Lookout Trail will be on your left. Continue straight and uphill for 0.15 mile further and you'll reach a small pool with some minor cascades above and below it on your right. Continue hiking uphill and in 0.1 mile further the white-blazed trail will take a hard left turn. Continue straight instead on an unofficial trail, which will soon lead right and bring you increasingly closer to the brook. As soon as the trail reaches the stream, the falls will be visible 200 feet upstream. Unfortunately, most will find the view from the end of the unofficial trail to be less than satisfactory. To reach the base of the falls, you can bushwhack directly up the stream, although it's tough to avoid getting wet and slipping at least once along the eroded brook bank is almost guaranteed. The easiest way to reach the base of the falls is to return 100 feet back towards the Mt. Bluff Trail, turn right to bushwhack uphill through the mostly open woods, and then scramble steeply down to a point near the base of the falls. Neither of these bushwhacking options is easy.


From the traffic circle junction of VT 7A, VT 11 and VT 30 in the center of Manchester, take VT 7A south for 1.1 miles and turn right onto Seminary Ave. Drive southwest on Seminary Ave for 0.3 mile and turn right onto West Union St. Drive 0.2 mile on West Union St and turn into a parking area for the preserve on your right. If the parking lot is full (and it typically is on nice weekends), there is an overflow lot near the start of West Union St.



If you know of any updates to this waterfall, or notice any errors either on this website and/or within the New England Waterfalls guidebook, please send me an email at or leave a Facebook comment at the bottom of this page. Updates to all of the waterfalls in the latest edition of the guidebook can always be found here: book updates


None noted.


Cascades At The Equinox Preserve, Vermont
Cascades At The Equinox Preserve, Vermont

Cascades At The Equinox Preserve, Vermont
Cascades At The Equinox Preserve, Vermont


The 3rd edition of the New England Waterfalls guidebook contains 552-pages of detailed information on hundreds of waterfalls throughout all corners of New England. This 3rd edition has been completely updated and it is the first to be printed in FULL COLOR! Click on the image below to explore some sample pages of the guidebook on

New England Waterfalls guidebook

Over 20,000 copies sold!

also available on...


Here are some tips to help ensure that your trip to New England's waterfalls and swimming holes will be a safe and enjoyable one:
  • DON'T FORGET THE ESSENTIALS - When you visit waterfalls, you should consider bringing all of the following: (a) bug spray; (b) food/snacks; (c) water/sports drinks; (d) camera/smart-phone; (e) guidebook/trail map; (f) daypack/backpack; and (g) hiking shoes, hiking boots or watershoes. A full day hiking packing list can be found here.
  • CONSIDER BUYING WATER SHOES - You won't see too many people using them, but watershoes are fantastic pieces of equipment that can make your trip to waterfalls and swimming holes safer and more enjoyable. Merrill and Keen make some fantastic watershoes (here are some great ones from Merrill: womens / mens).
  • LEAVE NO TRACE - When you visit waterfalls and swimming holes, you'll often see some trash and sometimes you'll even find clothing left behind by others. It's really, really sad, and it irks the heck out of us. Won't you consider carrying out some of trash and clothing left by others when you leave? That would leave the spot more beautiful for the next person. Bring a trash bag and be a hero!
  • PRIVATE PROPERTY - Many waterfalls and swimming holes are located on private property and so we are truly fortunate that many landowners allow us to enjoy them. If you want to ensure that they stay open to the public, please do your best to leave no trace. If you see a sign that says 'Private Property', turn around and find another waterfall to visit or a different place to swim.
  • BRING A DSLR CAMERA AND TRIPOD WITH YOU - If you want to take high-quality photographs of waterfalls, your smart-phone just won't cut it. Get a DSLR camera, a tripod, and learn to master the art of waterfall photography.
  • SCOUT FIRST, SWIM SECOND - Never enter a swimming hole without first scouting it, even if you see somebody else swimming in it. Stop and access the risks based upon the depth of water, the power of the current, evidence of slippery rocks, and other safety factors.
  • CLIFF JUMPING - Cliff jumping is dangerous. Like, seriously dangerous. Understand the risks before you partake in this activity. Many have died from doing this in New England. Here is a list of all known deaths at waterfalls and swimming holes in New England.
  • PLEASE DON'T BUILD ROCK CAIRNS - Please do not build new rock cairns at waterfalls or swimming holes. Cairns are a strong reminder of human presence, and don't we all want to see waterfalls in their natural state and glory? Photographers get particularly annoyed at seeing cairns, so please resist the urge to build them.
  • DON'T RELY ON YOUR GPS TO GET YOU TO THE TRAILHEAD - Waterfalls don't have addresses, so relying on your GPS to get you to a trailhead is great way to get yourself lost. You need a guidebook, a road atlas, and/or a hiking map to visit the vast majority of waterfalls in New England. Also keep in mind that waterfalls are often located in wild areas, where smart-phone map apps and car GPS units may not work at all.
  • WATERFALLS IN SPRING - The best time to visit waterfalls is generally in the spring during the annual snowmelt (which is April to June). However, most waterfalls will often look great for several days after a significant rain storm.
  • HELP KEEP THE ULTRA-SECRET SWIMMING HOLES A SECRET (FOREVER) - If you find some ultra-secret swimming holes, please do your best to keep them a secret. Do not post their locations online or wildly share directions or photos with others. All of the swimming holes that are included in the guidebook and online through this website are the well-known swimming spots. There are many more holes that are much further off the beaten path, but they deserve a chance to stay wild and pristine.
  • DON'T SCRAMBLE UP WATERFALLS - So many people been seriously injured and killed in the waterfalls of New England. Many of these folks got too close to a waterfall and slipped and fell. Don't become a statistic: stay far back from the edge.
  • WEAR TRACTION IF YOU VISIT WATERFALLS IN WINTER - Visiting waterfalls in winter can be rewarding, but there is often a higher element of danger. You may need crampons, snowshoes, and/or some other form of traction (like Microspikes) in order to safely hike to waterfalls in winter.
  • SUPPORT NON-PROFIT ORGANIZATIONS THAT CONSERVE WATERFALLS & SWIMMING HOLES - There are some organizations in New England that work diligently to conserve and maintain waterfalls and swimming holes. Please consider supporting these organizations, either with their trail maintenance projects or with monetary donations. Here are three excellent organizations engaged in this extremely important mission: the Trustees of Reservations, the Vermont River Conservancy and the Nature Conservancy.


Here are some helpful links to help you explore and enjoy more waterfalls and hikes throughout New England:
  • Waterfalls of Connecticut = link
  • Waterfalls of Maine = link
  • Waterfalls of Massachusetts = link
  • Waterfalls of New Hampshire = link
  • Waterfalls of Rhode Island = link
  • Waterfalls of Vermont = link
  • Best Waterfalls in New England = link
  • Best Swimming Holes in New England = link
  • Top 25 Day Hikes in New England = link
  • Top 25 Family-Friendly Day Hikes in New England = link
  • Waterfalls Near Boston, Massachusetts = link
  • Waterfalls Near Lincoln, New Hampshire = link
  • Waterfalls Near North Conway, New Hampshire = link
  • Waterfalls Near Stowe, Vermont = link
  • Waterfall Photography Tips = link


In addition to the New England Waterfalls guidebook, there are several other guidebooks that can help you find waterfalls and swimming holes:
  • Vermont Waterfalls (1st Edition: 2015) = link
  • Hiking Waterfalls in New England: A Guide to the Region's Best Waterfall Hikes (1st Edition: 2015) = link
  • Waterfalls of the White Mountains: 30 Hikes to 100 Waterfalls (2nd Edition: 1999) = link
  • Connecticut Waterfalls (1st Edition: 2014) = link
  • Rodrick's Guide to Vermont Waterfalls, Cascades & Gorges (1st Edition: 2014) = link


Join the growing communities of waterfall aficionados on Facebook! You can share your photographs, follow the adventures of other waterfall hunters, and find new places to explore:

  • Request to join the "New England Waterfalls" community > link
  • Request to join the "New Hampshire Waterfalls" community > link
  • Request to join the "Northeastern Waterfalls" community > link
  • Request to join the "Vermont Waterfalls" community > link
  • Request to join the "Waterfalls of the United States" community > link

And if you'd like to follow the New England Waterfalls page on Facebook, click here.


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Waterfalls, swimming holes, and hiking can be extremely dangerous. Hundreds of people have been injured or killed in the waterfalls and swimming holes of New England over the years. Never swim in strong water currents. Don't jump into a swimming hole without scouting it first. Do not climb up or along the side of waterfalls. Be weary of slippery rocks. Never swim in pools above waterfalls. Use of this website and all of its information is at your own risk! and the authors of the New England Waterfalls guidebook will not be held liable for your actions. Be safe out there - and always use common sense!