Cascading 268 feet down a sheer cliff outside Seattle is the breathtaking Snoqualmie Falls, one of Washington State’s most popular scenic attractions. More than 1.5 million visitors come annually to marvel at this thundering natural wonder.
Most of the Snoqualmie River is diverted for power generation, but the falls reach their full force during peak snowmelt and rainy months. The deafening roar of the swollen cascade creates blinding mists that coat the observation decks lining the cliffs.
For native Snoqualmie people, Snoqualmie Falls holds deep cultural and spiritual significance. The rising mists are said to connect heaven and earth. The falls were designated a protected Traditional Cultural Property due to their central role in Snoqualmie culture.
A paved trail switchbacks down the cliffs through lush forest to reach the falls’ base. While the plunging vista is visible from above, only viewing Snoqualmie Falls from below allows you to grasp their immense scale and power fully.
The falls’ perpetual motion has long been harnessed to produce hydroelectricity, with a power plant operating at their base since 1899. But the falls still retain their untamed, primal magnificence. The sheer volume of cascading white water demonstrates nature’s force and timelessness.
Just a short drive from Seattle, Snoqualmie Falls remains a can’t-miss spectacle for visitors and a sacred site to native people. Whether seen from above or below, their thundering beauty will leave a lasting impact.
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