Exploring Sullivan Falls on State Game Lands 13

One of the Premier Roadside Waterfalls in Sullivan County

Springtime at Sullivan Falls in Sullivan County.
Springtime at Sullivan Falls in Sullivan County.

Sullivan Falls is one of the largest roadside waterfalls in Sullivan County, PA.

It joins the likes of Big Falls, Twin Falls, and Lewis Falls as outstanding reasons to explore State Game Lands 13, located a mere 2 miles west of the much busier Ricketts Glen State Park.

It’s also the natural starting point for a hike to nearby Pigeon Run and the many waterfalls along it.

But even though Sullivan Falls is a roadside waterfall, some folks still have difficulty finding it.

So that is the purpose of this write-up: to show you exactly where Sullivan Falls is, as well as what to expect when you visit in the various seasons.


Visiting Sullivan Falls

How to Find Sullivan Falls on State Game Lands 13 in Sullivan County

  1. Turn off of Route 487 onto Sullivan Falls Road

    Just north of Ricketts Glen State Park you will turn onto Sullivan Falls Road (erroneously called Jamison City Road on Google Maps and possibly on your navigation system).
    A map to Sullivan Falls on State Game Lands 13 in Sullivan County, PA.

  2. Travel 2.1 miles on Sullivan Falls Road

    Sullivan Falls Road is a “No Winter Maintenance” forest road – use extreme caution in the winter.

  3. Arrive at the Sullivan Falls parking area

    The parking area is marked by a large boulder engraved with the words “Sullivan Falls” (see image below).The parking area at Sullivan Falls along Sullivan Falls Road.

  4. Sullivan Falls Parking Area GPS Coordinates: 41.335085, -76.339117

  5. Walk to Sullivan Falls

    The top of the waterfall is located 375 feet from the parking lot along a well-worn path.


Best Views of Sullivan Falls

The famous rope swing at Sullivan Falls.
The famous rope swing at Sullivan Falls.

My personal preference with this and virtually all other waterfalls is to view it from stream level.

However, you still have an outstanding (albeit partially obstructed by tree branches) view of Sullivan Falls from the top of the trail.

Looking down on Sullivan Falls from the top of the switchback trail.
Looking down on Sullivan Falls from the top of the switchback trail.

If you do want to view Sullivan Falls from stream level, you need to follow an obvious switchback trail down the stream bank, which can certainly be slippery any time of the year.

Sullivan Falls on State Game Lands 13 in the winter.
Sullivan Falls on State Game Lands 13 in the winter.

Be sure to use EXTREME CAUTION if you attempt it in the winter.

Summer greenery around Sullivan Falls
Summer greenery around Sullivan Falls

A dazzling array of greenery springs to life where only snow and ice dwell in the frosty months.

An October leaf swirl below Sullivan Falls.
An October leaf swirl below Sullivan Falls.

And the voluminous amount of fall foliage that collects in the plunge pool lends itself to long exposures and “leaf swirls” images, giving this 35-foot waterfall a surreal quality.

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

While nearby Ricketts Glen State Park is overrun by visitors every October, Sullivan Falls is generally much more peaceful but equally stunning.


Final Thoughts

The author at Sullivan Falls on State Game Lands 13 in Sullivan County.
The author at Sullivan Falls on State Game Lands 13 in Sullivan County.

There may not be a better bang-for-your-buck waterfall in Sullivan County.

Easy to get to but grand in stature, Sullivan Falls is everything you imagine when you think of Pennsylvania waterfalls!

A stream-level view of Sullivan Falls in the winter.
A stream-level view of Sullivan Falls in the winter.

And if you didn’t already stop there on your way to Sullivan Falls, be sure to check out Big Run Falls a mere 1/4 of a mile up the road. Yet another fantastic roadside waterfall!

An October morning at Big Run Falls.
An October morning at Big Run Falls.

Add stops at Sullivan Falls and Big Run Falls to the beginning or end of your day when hiking to Big Falls, Twin Falls, and Lewis Falls, also nearby on State Game Lands 13, and you’ve got the makings of a prodigious waterfall excursion!

An autumn view of Lewis Falls on State Game Lands 13 in Sullivan County, PA.
An autumn view of Lewis Falls on State Game Lands 13 in Sullivan County, PA.

Feeling Extra Adventurous?

Consider hiking to Quinn Run Falls, Shanty Run Falls, and Foundation Falls – all located upstream from Lewis Falls on State Game Lands 13.

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

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