My boots were soaking wet from water crossings at Spring Brook Lower Rapids, I was nearly out of sunlight for the day, and I had yet to determine where I was sleeping tonight. That’s about par for the course on my trips. As I left the National Forest area, I found myself near the town of Mason, Wisconsin at the White River Park and stopped to check out a possible waterfall with easy access.
There is a historical sign detailing Mason’s White River Lumber Company Sawmill circa 1905 and was constructed by the Masona Area Historical Society.
If you follow the river upstream from the sign about 100 yards you can easily find White River Falls, a cascade/step style waterfall. It isn’t very tall – maybe only a drop of 5 feet overall – but it does stretch out across 4-5 “steps” covering maybe 20 feet or so.
Looking away from the falls downstream, you can see the bend in the river is sheltered by a large sandy cliff. Closest to where I am standing there is a small sandy beach that is sheltered in the eddy of the river current. I’d imagine this is a popular spot for kids to play in the summertime.
And finally just downstream of the beach is a small rapids that appears to drop maybe 1-2 feet off a ledge formation on the other shoreline.
Rain was moving in fast so I packed up and took a quick look at tomorrow’s targeted hikes. I decided to head north to Bayfield as it would be closer for the morning’s events. This was a bad idea for several reasons. First and foremost I forgot it was Apple Fest, one of the largest festivals in this area for the season, and all lodging was booked even at campgrounds. Second, the thunderstorms were heavier than expected making the drive in the dark no fun. Third and finally I did find a campsite at Dalrymple County Park but it was the most sloped site and I couldn’t properly level it out due to the flash-flood type rain and winds. I recall having some of the wildest nightmares I have ever had that night (something about a bear eating me which isn’t comforting given I’m exploring bear country). Luckily I did get some good sleep during the storms and awoke quite well rested.
Here’s a short video of the falls in action. Not very long or spectacular but hey, they can’t all be champions. Still a very nice small local park in a sleepy old town with not much else going on.
Lat = 46.4296684 , Long = -91.059021 -- Show at Google Maps