Exploring Quinn Run Falls, Shanty Run Falls, and Foundation Falls in Sullivan County

Quinn Run Falls on a spring day.
Quinn Run Falls on a spring day.

Quinn Run Falls, Shanty Run Falls, and Foundation Falls are three picturesque waterfalls located within a half-mile of each other on State Game Lands 13, yet all three are relatively unfamiliar to most hikers in Sullivan County.

Even to those who frequent State Game Lands 13 often.

So my purpose here is to give you all the information you need to find and enjoy these three superb sights.

As with all hikes on State Game Lands, wearing a blaze orange hat or vest (or both) is a prudent precautionary safety measure.


Getting There

How to Find Quinn Run Falls, Shanty Run Falls, and Foundation Falls in Sullivan County

  1. From the intersection of Jamison City Road and Sullivan Falls Road in Jamison City, proceed 1.25 miles on Jamison City Road to the gate at Grassy Hollow Road.

    A map to Grassy Hollow Road in Sullivan County.

  2. Park at the Grassy Hollow Road parking area and hike 1.65 miles up Grassy Hollow Road to the Lewis Falls parking area.

    For the purposes of this hike I’m assuming you are familiar with Big Falls, Twin Falls, and Lewis Falls, which are all located along Grassy Hollow Road as well. If you aren’t familiar with them, please read my write-up on that hike before proceeding, should you choose to add these waterfalls to your itinerary.
    A map to the Lewis Falls parking area on State Game Lands 13 in Sullivan County.

  3. From the back of the Lewis Falls parking area, follow the well-worn trail towards Heberly Run, to a spot just above Lewis Falls.

    Lewis Falls parking area sign on State Game Lands 13.

  4. Cross Heberly Run just above Lewis Falls, at whatever spot seems safest on the day you are visiting.

    Note: this is a wet crossing – there is no bridge over Heberly Run. Water levels here can be anywhere from ankle deep in the summer to knee-deep after a hard rain or snow melt.
    A map to Quinn Run Falls, Shanty Run Falls, and Foundation Falls on State Game Lands 13.

  5. Once across Heberly Run, proceed upstream along an old log road 0.2 miles until you see an old chimney and foundation on your left.

    The chimney and foundation along Quinn Run on State Game Lands 13.

  6. Leave the log road and hike down to Quinn Run, past the chimney and foundation, to Foundation Falls.

    GPS coordinates for Foundation Falls: 41.341030, -76.366136
    Foundation Falls on Quinn Run in Sullivan County.

  7. Returning to the old log road, continue hiking upstream 0.3 miles, to a point where the road/trail makes a hard right turn uphill. At this point, leave the road and descend downhill to Shanty Run Falls.

    GPS coordinates for Shanty Run Falls: 41.344614, -76.368815
    Shanty Run Falls on a summer afternoon.

  8. From Shanty Run Falls, proceed downstream 50 yards to the merge point with Quinn Run and location of Quinn Run Falls.

    GPS coordinates for Quinn Run Falls: 41.344324, -76.369008
    A downstream view of Quinn Run Falls.


Exploring Foundation Falls

Almost immediately after crossing Heberly Run above Lewis Falls, you’ll encounter scores of photogenic cascades along Quinn Run.

Unnamed cascade along Quinn Run on a summer afternoon.
Unnamed cascade along Quinn Run on a summer afternoon.

Once you arrive at Foundation Falls, you’ll have plenty of photographic options as well.

I typically start with the long view and work my way in closer.

Foundation Falls along Quinn Run on State Game Lands 13.
Foundation Falls along Quinn Run on State Game Lands 13.

The two tiers of Foundation Falls shoot nicely with lower flow, where you can really pick out the nuances in the rocks .

I also find it interesting to shoot from the same vantage point in different seasons.

Foundation Falls on a winter day in Sullivan County.
Foundation Falls on a winter day in Sullivan County.

Isolating the upper tier is a simple matter of crossing the creek between the two tiers, where the water is quite shallow.

The upper tier of Foundation Falls on State Game Lands 13.
The upper tier of Foundation Falls on State Game Lands 13.

Just above Foundation Falls you’ll find more many cascades along Quinn Run.

Should you choose to hike straight up the stream instead of using the old log road that runs along the right side of Quinn Run, you’ll have a chance to shoot them as well.

An unnamed cascade along Quinn Run on State Game Lands 13.
An unnamed cascade along Quinn Run on State Game Lands 13.

Exploring Shanty Run Falls

Assuming you are following the steps I laid out above, utilizing the old log road on the right side of Quinn Run, the next waterfall you’ll come to is Shanty Run Falls.

Shanty Run Falls on an autumn morning.
Shanty Run Falls on an autumn morning.

This graceful drop checks in at around 7 feet tall.

Almost a miniature version of Lewis Falls downstream.

Shanty Run Falls on a cold winter day.
Shanty Run Falls on a cold winter day.

It’s a remarkable little alcove in the forest, and the ice hangs on here well after it has melted in other nearby spots.

Ice and snow around Shanty Run Falls in Sullivan County.
Ice and snow around Shanty Run Falls in Sullivan County.

Even with the typical low flow in the fall, the wispy veil of water arching down Shanty Run on an autumn morning makes for an outstanding photo-op.

A side view of Shanty Run Falls on an autumn morning.
A side view of Shanty Run Falls on an autumn morning.

Exploring Quinn Run Falls

Quinn Run Falls is a series of 4-5 foot tall shelves, with a taller 7-8 foot shelf up top.

So depending on where you are standing and who’s counting, Quinn Run Falls collectively appears to be 15-18 feet tall.

Quinn Run Falls on an autumn afternoon.
Quinn Run Falls on an autumn afternoon.

With my friend Steve in this frame for scale, you can see the upper tiers are each a little better than waist-high on an adult.

Photographer Steve Rubano at Quinn Run Falls on State Game Lands 13.
Photographer Steve Rubano at Quinn Run Falls on State Game Lands 13.

The scene at Quinn Run always reminds me of a similar scene along Miners Run in Lycoming County.

An autumn scene from the third waterfall on Miners Run in the Loyalsock State Forest.
An autumn scene from the third waterfall on Miners Run in the Loyalsock State Forest.

Upstream from both Quinn Run Falls and Shanty Run Falls are many smaller cascades, which depending on how much daylight you have, you may wish to explore.

The return hike is a simple matter of retracing your steps back to the parking area at the bottom of Grassy Hollow Road.


Final Thoughts

While not nearly as tall as any of the waterfalls downstream on Heberly Run, the waterfalls above Lewis Falls offer a greater sense of remoteness and tranquility.

A downstream view of Lewis Falls on State Game Lands 13 in Sullivan County, PA.
A downstream view of Lewis Falls on State Game Lands 13 in Sullivan County, PA.

Quinn Run Falls, Shanty Run Falls, and Foundation Falls are all very photogenic and offer the intrepid hiker a rich reward for the uphill trek.


Still not convinced you need to explore Foundation Falls, Shanty Run Falls, and Quinn Run Falls?

Then check out this video!


Of course no trip to State Game Lands 13 is complete without a stop at nearby Sullivan Falls on the East Branch of Fishing Creek.

Fall foliage surrounding Sullivan Falls on State Game Lands 13.
Fall foliage surrounding Sullivan Falls on State Game Lands 13.

And just up the road from Sullivan Falls is a popular roadside waterfall – Big Run Falls.

The view of Big Run Falls from Sullivan Falls Road.
The view of Big Run Falls from Sullivan Falls Road.

There’s a reason why State Game Lands 13 is called the “waterfall wonderland” of Sullivan County.

And these are just a few of the reasons you’ll want to come back to visit again and again!


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Rusty Glessner is a professional photographer, lifelong Pennsylvanian, and creator of the PA Bucket List travel blog.

2 COMMENTS

    • A few hours northeast in Sullivan County, PA. Next valley over from the much more famous Ricketts Glen State Park.

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