Pauline Longest Falls

Height: 20 feet
Trail Type: Dirt
Hike Distance: 0.6 miles round trip
Difficulty: 1
Beauty: 7

Overview:

There’s no official name for these falls as far as I can tell, but I called the falls Pauline Longest Falls after the trail of the same name that takes you there. There’s a decent view from a couple of points along the bank, but with good hiking boots or your bare feet, you can scramble down to the creek and get inside the gorge that was carved by the creek. Here, the water twists and contorts itself down inside a pothole-shaped gorge before emerging out and snaking through the exposed bedrock. It’s an impressive sight.

Directions:

From Exit 28 off of Interstate 295, drive south on Ramsey Street for 1.6 miles and turn left onto Lowdermilk Drive. This is the entrance to Methodist University and you’ll have to stop at the gate and talk to the attendant. If you tell him/her you want to check out the Pauline Longest Nature Trail, they’ll probably let you pass. When I visited, the attendant told me the trail was “a bit rugged,” which was a complete lie.

From the gate, turn right onto Joe Stout View Drive. Follow this street down to the student bookstore and turn right into the parking lot. Drive to the opposite back end of the lot and take the road that leads out. After the speed bump, you’ll come to a 5-way intersection. Take the second right at that intersection – Lower Field Drive. Take this road all the way to the parking lot behind the baseball stadium.

Hike Description:

The trail starts on the other side of the railroad tracks beside a natural gas pipeline station. The path dives into the woods and is practically level for the quarter-mile leading to the falls. Once you reach the creek, you have a choice to either make a short climb up the bank to view the falls, or keep walking for a short distance and scramble down to the creek bed.

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