West Falls of the Black River

May, 2004

State: Ohio

Location: Elyria

Height: 35

Crest: 75

Water Source: West Fork Black River

Waypoint: 41.3723N 82.1109W

Summary: This is an urban waterfall located at the far end of a decent sized park. The falls are easily viewed from a nice observation deck and access into the gorge is easy. This is a good size waterfall, especially for Ohio. One of the bigger waterfalls in the Lake Erie Watershed.

This urban waterfalls is in Elyria Ohio, roughly 30 miles west of Cleveland. It is at the south end of Cascade Park. There is a 1.2 mile long trail to the falls that ends at an observation deck. Parts of the the trail are paved. The trail follows the river and passes some very big rocks. The falls are at the far end of the park. Just above the falls is a bridge and an urban area.

Some of the best views of the falls are from the east side of the river. In 2006 the built a pedestrian bridge below the falls, giving you easy access to both sides of the river. Before that you either had to wade through the river, or take the two Falls Trail which starts at the East Falls. It is a 10 minute walk through the gorge. There is a large cave-like recess on the east side of the falls.

Sadly there is a lot of garbage in the gorge below the falls, such as tires, oil drums and the bits and pieces of shopping carts. This seems to be the fate of many urban waterfalls. The area smells a bit funny too. I was there after a week of rain and some sewers had overflown.

To reach the falls from the Ohio Turnpike, take exit 145. This is the exit for Route 57 and Elyria. Head southbound on Route 57 to Route 113 and turn left (east). Continue to N. West River Street and turn right (the signs may just say West River Street). An entrance to Cascade Park will be on your left. Once in the park just follow the winding road until you pass (but do not cross) the ford and reach a parking area. There are other entrances to the park. You can also view the falls from the bridge, and walk to them from East Falls.

Here is a short movie of West Falls.

[Cleveland Area] Nearby Falls

The East Falls are a mile away. There is a trail between the two falls. There are a surprising (to me anyway) number of waterfalls in the Cleveland area. The following are all within 30 miles of Cleveland: Brandywine Falls, Buttermilk Falls, Mill Creek Falls and Chagrin Falls.

Other Websites

A list of things to see in Elryia, including an animation of the East falls.

Photo Gallery

View from the Bridge

Views from the East, September 2004

September 2004

Views from the East, March 2009

March 2009

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Last Modified: Saturday, 03-Oct-2009 15:11:09 MDT.

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