With a little spare time on my hands this week, I decided to go check out a waterfall that I learned was due north of Greensboro, NC. I found this one while reading a blog post from Mark Caskie on his “Line of Cedars” blog:
This means that I will actually be driving east, the one direction that usually is not used in waterfall directions from my location. Mayo River State Park is one of North Carolina’s newest state parks. With a few picnic areas, 2 short hiking trails, and a small fishing pond, I have to say that I was not overwhelmed by the options or scenery, especially compared to Hanging Rock State Park, which sits a few miles to the west. They are however in their infancy, and I am sure that better things are to come. They are headed in the right direction, because now …… They have a waterfall!
Well, they kind of have one. It is on the state park property. There is no official trail with the park here yet. I assume there will be one day. This is too nice of a feature to leave out of a new state park, that seems to be in need of some attractions. I searched this one up in THE..book for North Carolina Waterfalls…appropriately titled “North Carolina Waterfalls – A Hiking And Photography Guide” by Kevin Adams. This is the 2005 version and on page 52, this one gets 4 lines in the “Other Waterfalls in the Hanging Rock State Park Region”. He mentions that in 2005 that it is currently on private property and inaccessible. He also mentions that it is hoped that it might be part of a new Mayo River State park one day. Well, Kevin, it seems your visions are becoming reality. If he releases a new version of this extremely detailed, and helpful reference book, maybe it will now get a tad more coverage. Besides being a nice waterfall, I believe it is the furthest point east in North Carolina that I have seen a “true waterfall”.
The way to get here, is to find yourself to US 220 north of the Madison and Mayodan areas. A side note…I have heard references to Mayodan all my life not knowing anything about it. It happens to be the area where the Mayo River and Dan River meet up, hence Mayodan. You know, the mighty Dan River that has notoriously been in the news all of 2014 due to the coal ash spill. Anyway from 220 heading north, or south in Virginia, look for Smith Rd. Exit on Smith Road, and turn left. Travel 4 1/2 miles to where Smith Road dead ends on Anglin Mill Rd. Turn left here, and follow it maybe 1/4 of a mile. Look for Deshazo Mill Rd on the right and take this turn. (I have also seen this waterfall referred to as Deshazo Mill Falls) Follow this road, which turns to gravel, down hill until the road crosses Fall Creek over a one lane bridge. Just over the bridge, will be a small parking area, and a bunch of newly installed wood boundary poles. This is the trail head. Refer to the photos above to know you are there.
The only way you will have any idea that you are in a state park, is the yellow state park boundary signs nailed to the trees on both sides of the woods. It does not even tell you which park you are in. This really does have the appearance of newly acquired property. The trail heads left here and follows along Fall Creek. This trail is very wide and is clear it used to be somebody’s road. It is only a short, maybe 1/4 mile walk to the top of the falls and the road kind of ends here. A few short paths lead down the 15-20 foot waterfall to some nice views at the base. I found along the way, a few signs that I was not alone down here…lol. There were some very large, defined deer tracks, along with a good size pack of turkeys that I passed coming into the area and leaving.
I found this waterfall to be quite scenic, especially for the location. It is usually a small waterfall on the left side of a large, rounded rock slab. I watched a video of it on you tube and watched it in a much higher flow. The entire rock face had some flow on it making it very nice. I will put this on the list to visit after some heavy rains. Today the water was flowing probably near normal. I was able to walk out on the dry rocks and get some nice views and see a nice shot of some tadpoles that have almost reached “frog hood”.
Fall Creek is a somewhat a slow, murky stream outside of the falls. I expected to possibly see snakes today but did not . Fall Creek makes its way into the newly formed Mayo River not far below the falls. The North Mayo River, South Mayo River and Fall Creek all flow in from Virginia to meet up and eventually meet up with the Dan River. They all decide that North Carolina is a nice place to visit and all, but decide to turn north and head back into Virginia. Thanks for stopping in our state and dropping a nice waterfall on us! On the way out, is a nice, little waterfall flowing in a small stream beside the dirt road. It was covered in vegetation today. This photo is from my first visit here this winter.