be the first to see new posts and photos. subscribe by email at wanderingsofamonkey.com
When you hear someone say they have a love obsession with water, you might instantly think of the ocean. We might include all forms of water, from a puddle all the way to the tides of the ocean. Either way, I think we all are a little obsessed with water in our own way.
JFK said it best when he spoke at a dinner for the America’s Cup Crew on September 14, 1962 when he said “I really don’t know why it is that all of us are so committed to the sea, except I think it’s because in addition to the fact that the sea changes, and the light changes, and ships change, it’s because we all came from the sea. And it is an interesting biological fact that all of us have in our veins the exact same percentage of salt in our blood that exists in the ocean, and, therefore, we have salt in our blood, in our sweat, in our tears. We are tied to the ocean. And when we go back to the sea – whether it is to sail or to watch it – we are going back from whence we came.”
With that in mind, until I make it back to the ocean, waterfalls will have to do for now.
Burgess Falls is named after Tom Burgess, a Revolutionary War veteran that settled along Falling Water River in 1790. Burgess Falls later became a state park in 1971, and is located in both Putnam County and White County, Tennessee. It covers 350 acres and has a 136 foot cataract waterfall that I can only describe as awe inspiring to see. From the overlook, you would swear that you were in another country with the way the water flows like a white ribbon over the side.
However, before you get to see the majesty of this particular waterfall, you have a choice to either hike a 1.5 mile trail that follows the bluff along the southern bank of a gorge, complete with cascades, or you can take the easy way and follow the gravel road that leads to the overlook.
Toward the bottom is a stairway that leads to the bottom of the falls; however, every time I have been, it has been closed due to flooding (usually, I either go around or over the big warning signs as safely as I can to get the shot I am looking for).
One thing to consider when visiting Burgess Falls is that cell phone reception is spotty, if not non-existent in places. If you go, be sure to forewarn anyone that knows your whereabouts that you are going and may not have cell signal so that they don’t worry if they cannot get ahold of you right away (I think I gave my wife a mini heart attack last time I went).
Have you ever wanted to be like a great Victorian explorer and explore the depths of the jungles of India? Well, here is your chance (sort of). Before the new Jungle Book movie, which was released in 2016, there was one in 1994 created by Walt Disney. This was a live action movie based on the 1967 animated film of Mowgli: Stories from the Jungle Book, which was filmed partly here in Tennessee. One of the two waterfalls in the film is Ozone Falls, which is a 43 acre natural area in Cumberland County. The falls are 110 feet of pure beauty with the tranquil sounds of water rushing over the cliffs and the picturesque sapphire-like blue pool at the bottom. If you hike a little ways downstream, you will think you are in a true jungle with the forest and vines, which, by the way, I don’t recommend swinging from (trust me, I’ve tried and it will only lead to embarrassment and pain).
Waterfall number two is one of my favorites: Fall Creek Falls. This vast 26,000 acre state park is located in both Van Buren and Bledsoe counties. The park’s namesake falls is 256 feet of pure breathtaking awe and is the highest free fall waterfall east of the Mississippi River. Fall Creek Falls State Park also has the 45 foot Cane Creek Cascades, which was also in the film where Quigley says “You see this sign? It says ‘Danger! To Cross this bridge is to enter the black jungle – the jungle of death’.” This is probably one of the best scenes, in my opinion, but then again I am partial because still to this day, it is one of my favorite places to travel. The best part is you get to travel to the “jungles of India” and a prior film set all for the grand total of however much gas you use to get there.