Waterfalls warm-up around Marquette


Photo courtesy of Lily Capodilupo FEATURED FALLS— (pictured) Black river falls, located near Marquette county. Capodilupo visted the falls last autumn as one of the many during her experience visiting all the falls on the Travel Marquette list.

Nate Jacobs

Home to over 70 natural waterfalls, Marquette County is the hot spot for adventurers of all levels. Travel Marquette offers a comprehensive waterfall guide to over 12 falls on an easy-to-follow waterfall guide map. A representative of Travel Marquette who asked to remain unnamed shares an appreciation for the beauty of the many waterfalls in the area.

“Marquette County in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula is home to 77 natural waterfalls, more falls than any other county in the state of Michigan,” said the representative with Travel Marquette. “Whether it is exploring the rushing waters during the spring, summer and early fall to exploring the frozen falls in the winter,” a representative of Travel Marquette said.

If it’s the need for fresh air or a way to get out of the house, the waterfall adventures are a way to break the monotony of pandemic social distancing. Lilly Capodilupo, a recent fall of 2020 graduate from Northern Michigan University, did just that to round out her final semester in school. She visited all of the waterfalls on the Travel Marquette guide.

“I was looking for fun ways to get outside and stay active during COVID-19 last year,” Capodilupo said.

According to Travel Marquette, each trail and waterfall are maintained by different organizations, respectively, depending on the designated area they fall under. The Noquemanon Trail Network, Michigan Department of Natural Resources and the Marquette County Government are responsible for different falls around the county. 

There are different types of waterfalls for each skill level hiker out there, ranging from intermediate to advanced. 

“Wright Street Falls, located just 10 minutes from town and perfect for those looking for a quick and easy excursion,” the Travel Marquette representative said.

For more advanced hiking enthusiasts, there are more intricate waterfall adventures to choose from. The Travel Marquette waterfall guide has a starred ranking system below each waterfall dictating how difficult each hike is. One star is beginner level and three stars are the most difficult. 

“Black River Falls was the hardest one, it was storming when we went and the trail washed out into massive sinkholes,” Capodilupo said.

It turned out to be Capodilupo’s favorite after all, as the rainy weather made the waterfall larger than normal.

“The water was jet black, I think that’s why they call it Black River Falls,” she said.

With the massive storm, it made it almost impossible to find the trails leading to the waterfall, according to Capodilupo. When they reached the bottom, the roaring rapids almost swept her and her partner in while trying to take a photo. 

“I wouldn’t recommend hiking in a thunderstorm, but it made for some good memories,” Capodilupo said. 

To go along with following Travel Marquette’s waterfall guide, Capodilupo shared some tips for hunting the different falls. It helps to look up directions online to compare with the Travel Marquette guide, Capodilupo said. It’s also easy to plan more than one waterfall on each trip.

Travel Marquette features an itinerary guide for visiting four waterfalls in one day. These waterfalls include Morgan Creek Falls, Dead River Falls, Yellow Dog Falls and Pinnacle Falls. Travel Marquette claims that these four falls can be found in just one afternoon. 

“Morgan Creek Falls offers visitors a dynamic hike and 20-foot drop, perfect for those seeking riverside views,” said the Travel Marquette representative.

Carp River falls is only a half-mile up the trail from Morgan Creek for those seeking a double feature, the Travel Marquette representative said.

It is important to follow the proper safety precautions before heading out on any waterfall hikes, no matter the time of the year. According to Koa.com, always let someone know where and when you are going, bring extra water, stay on the path, and always bring a buddy.

“I always bring a go-bag with extra snacks and a jacket, and I always had someone to hike with,”  Capodilupo said. For more information on the Travel Marquette’s waterfall guide or other Marquette attractions, visit travelmarquette.com or call 906-228-7749.