Top 5 Waterfalls in Nevada

March 10, 2023

waterfalls in Nevada

We’re proud to call Nevada home to some of the most spectacular waterfalls in the country. From towering cascades to intimate trickles, these water wonders are sure to leave you awestruck!

While most of these waterfalls require a hike to reach, there are some that are accessible by road. Below are a few of them:

First Creek Falls

If you're looking for a refreshing hike in the desert, head to First Creek Falls. This tiny waterfall is nestled amongst towering red-and-white sandstone cliffs.

The 2.2-mile round trip trail is well-maintained and features a small plunge pool cut into the rock at the base of the waterfall. The falls are dry most of the year, but they still provide a welcome respite from the desert heat.

You can reach the waterfall by hiking up a dry desert valley and then following a use-trail down the side of the canyon to the falls. It's an easy hike and perfect for anyone with limited time.

This is also a great place to practice your trad climbing skills. The sandstone walls of the canyon are prone to flash flooding during storms, so be sure to bring a rain jacket. Fortunately, the area has lots of handholds to help you find your way around.

Big Falls

The only true horsetail waterfall on this list, Big Falls is a truly unique experience in the desert of southern Nevada. If you come here during a good water year, you’ll find a beautiful little plunge in a box canyon that’s unlike anything else in this state.

This waterfall is a great option for those who want to see a more impressive waterfall than Mary Jane Falls without the crowds. You’ll have to hike a bit longer than Mary Jane, and you might have to scramble down some stairs, but it’s well worth the effort.

A short drive west from Las Vegas on Route 159 leads to First Creek Falls in Red Rock Canyon N.C.A. It’s a popular hike and can get pretty busy so be prepared to share the trail with others.

Hunter Creek Falls

The popular Hunter Creek Trail is a 6.4 mile heavily trafficked out and back hike that features a beautiful waterfall at the end. It is a moderately strenuous hike that has some lengthy sun-exposed stretches, so it is best to pack plenty of sunscreen.

The developed trailhead on Woodchuck Circle in western Reno features parking, toilets and drinking water. This trail is a great way to get out and explore the wilderness area that surrounds Reno.

To reach the trail, drive west on Interstate 80 from downtown Reno to North McCarran Boulevard. From here, follow Plateau Road to Woodchuck Circle.

Upon arriving at the trailhead, look for a restroom and well-marked signs to Hunter Creek Trail.

The trail climbs steeply along the creek and through a thick forest. The terrain is rocky at times, with several stretches that are completely sun exposed. Pets and small children may have a difficult time navigating the rockier sections of this trail, so it is important to bring plenty of water, snacks, and sunscreen.

Kings Canyon

Located near Carson City, Nevada, the easily accessible Kings Canyon Falls is one of the most breathtaking waterfalls in the state. The water cascades over a rocky granite incline, its torrents streaking like fireworks.

The trail to the falls is less than a mile long, making it a fun, family-friendly hike. There are also spectacular views of the Sierra Nevada Mountains below and a good chance of seeing wildlife.

If you have a bit more time, the 3.4-mile out-and-back hike into the base of the canyon will reward you with a stunning payoff, too.

You’ll be able to see the famous Big Stump, which is now a National Monument, and you can even take a walk on it (though it’s not that easy). Afterward, you can continue along the scenic Kings Canyon Scenic Byway through the incredible forests and deep ditches. You’ll find amazing vistas of Grizzly Falls, Don Cecil View, Hotel Creek Overlook, Canyon View and Roaring River Falls before you reach Roads End.


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