The Best Waterfalls Near Pittsburgh Road Trip

How to find the best waterfalls near Pittsburgh Pennsylvania.

Who’s up for an epic 258 mile round-trip road trip to see the best waterfalls near Pittsburgh?!

Directions to the 10 best waterfalls near Pittsburgh Pennsylvania
A road trip to see the best waterfalls near Pittsburgh.

If this sounds like something you’ve always wanted to do, I’ve mapped out the perfect road trip for you.

Springfield Falls on State Game Lands 284 in Mercer County Pennsylvania.
Leesburg Falls on State Game Lands 284 in Mercer County.

Simply follow along and click on the blue text links to open more detailed descriptions and directions to each of these waterfall hotspots near Pittsburgh.

Approaching Quaker Falls in Lawrence County Pennsylvania.
Approaching Quaker Falls in Lawrence County.

This road trip departs from and returns to Pittsburgh, and I’m going to describe the trip going in a clockwise direction, but you could just as easily go the opposite way and have just as much fun!

Big Run Falls at Cascade Park in Lawrence County.
Big Run Falls in New Castle.

1. Fall Run Falls in Allegheny County

Fall Run Falls in Allegheny County has the distinction of being the largest waterfall near downtown Pittsburgh!

Fall Run Falls in Shaler Township Pennsylvania.
The author at Fall Run Falls in Shaler Township, just 7 miles north of downtown Pittsburgh.

Located a mere 7 miles northeast of Pittsburgh, Fall Run Falls is a beautiful 18 foot tall waterfall tucked away in a nature park that is surrounded on all sides by housing developments.

Side view of Fall Run Falls in Glenshaw Pennsylvania.
Side view of Fall Run Falls.

2. Buttermilk Falls in Beaver County

Our second stop on the “best waterfalls near Pittsburgh” road trip is Buttermilk Falls in Beaver County, a magnificent waterfall in a rather unexpected, urban location.

View of Buttermilk Falls in Beaver County from the upper observation area.
View of Buttermilk Falls in Beaver County from the upper observation area.

Located just a few hundred yards from the Beaver Falls exit of the PA Turnpike, Buttermilk Falls is one a handful of waterfalls in Pennsylvania you can stand behind!

The author behind Buttermilk Falls in Beaver County PA.
The author behind Buttermilk Falls in Beaver County, PA.

3. Big Run Falls

Stop number three along the “best waterfalls near Pittsburgh” road trip is Big Run Falls, located at the center of Cascade Park in New Castle, the county seat of Lawrence County.

Summer blooms near Big Run Falls at Cascade Park.
Summer blooms near Big Run Falls at Cascade Park.

Big Run Falls in Cascade Park is essentially a roadside waterfall, with the best vantage point for viewing the falls being the overlook directly across from the parking area.

Picnic table at the roadside overlook near Big Run Falls in New Castle.
Picnic table at the roadside overlook near Big Run Falls in New Castle.

4. Quaker Falls

Quaker Falls (also known as Quakertown Falls) is stop number four along the “best waterfalls near Pittsburgh” road trip – a 50 footer located less than a mile from the Ohio border, north of Pittsburgh in Lawrence County.

Exploring Quaker Falls in Lawrence County Pennsylvania.
The author at Quaker Falls in Lawrence County.

Quaker Falls is the centerpiece of the newly-created Quaker Falls Recreation Area, a Lawrence County park.

Quaker Falls as viewed from the parking lot at Quaker Falls Recreation Area in Lawrence County Pennsylvania.
Quaker Falls as viewed from the parking lot at Quaker Falls Recreation Area in Lawrence County.

5. Springfield Falls

Springfield Falls is stop number five, a beautiful roadside waterfall in Mercer County.

Exploring Springfield Falls in Mercer County Pennsylvania.
The author at Springfield Falls in Mercer County.

Also known as Leesburg Falls, this waterfall stands 20 feet tall and close to 40 feet wide, spanning the entire width of Hunters Run on State Game Lands 284.

Standing on State Game Lands 284, looking across Springfield Falls towards the jewelry store and ruins of an old iron furnace.
Standing on State Game Lands 284, looking across Springfield Falls.

6. Waterfalls at McConnells Mill State Park

Stop number six along the “best waterfalls near Pittsburgh” road trip is McConnells Mill State Park in Lawrence County, home to many wonderful attractions, including numerous waterfalls.

Ice formations at Alpha Falls at McConnells Mill State Park
Ice formations at Alpha Falls at McConnells Mill State Park.

Alpha Falls is the tallest waterfall at McConnells Mill State Park, at 35 feet.

Rusty Glessner at Alpha Falls at McConnells Mill State Park
The author at Alpha Falls at McConnells Mill State Park.

Hell’s Hollow Falls may be the most famous, in part because of the ominous-sounding name.

The author at Hell's Hollow Falls.
The author at Hell’s Hollow Falls, McConnells Mill State Park.

And Grindstone Falls may be the least well-know, as it doesn’t even appear on the official park map (not yet, at least).

The author visiting Grindstone Falls.
The author visiting Grindstone Falls at McConnells Mill State Park.

7. Buttermilk Falls in Armstrong County

Buttermilk Falls in Armstrong County is short in stature but long on beauty, located along a rail trail that parallels Cowanshannock Creek, a tributary of the Allegheny River.

Buttermilk Falls near Kittanning Pennsylvania.
Buttermilk Falls near Kittanning.

The falls are located along the Cowanshannock Trail, a recently-renovated rail trail and spur of the much longer Armstrong Trail.

Buttermilk Falls along the Cowanshannock Trail in Armstrong County Pennsylvania.
Buttermilk Falls along the Cowanshannock Trail.

8. Buttermilk Falls in Indiana County

Stop number eight along the “best waterfalls near Pittsburgh” road trip is Buttermilk Falls in Indiana County, one of the tallest waterfalls in western PA, at 45 feet.

View of Buttermilk Falls in Indiana County from the top of the stairs.
View of Buttermilk Falls in Indiana County from the top of the stairs.

Buttermilk Falls in Indiana County is another of the handful of Pennsylvania waterfalls you can stand BEHIND!

View from behind Buttermilk Falls in Indiana County.
View from behind Buttermilk Falls in Indiana County, east of Pittsburgh.

From Buttermilk Falls in Indiana County, it’s an easy drive back to Pittsburgh, where this waterfalls road trip began!

The view from Mount Washington in Pittsburgh Pennsylvania
The view from Mount Washington in Pittsburgh.

Does the thought of taking a 540 mile cross-state road trip to see the tallest waterfalls in Pennsylvania intrigue you?

A map showing how to find the the tallest waterfalls in Pennsylvania.

Then you’ll enjoy this east-west route I mapped out with that will take you to some of the tallest waterfalls in each region of Pennsylvania, while allowing for ample opportunity to improvise along the way.

Summer at Angel Falls in Sullivan County, Pennsylvania.
Summer at Angel Falls in Sullivan County, Pennsylvania.

Or maybe the thought of taking a scenic cross-state road trip to see the best roadside waterfalls in Pennsylvania is more up your alley?

A map showing how to find the best roadside waterfalls in Pennsylvania.

Then you’ll never have to get out of the car to enjoy this 483 mile east-west route I came up with that will take you to some of the most beautiful roadside waterfalls across Pennsylvania.

Toyota Tacoma parked in front of Holcomb Falls along Leroy Mountain Road in Bradford County PA
Parked in front of Holcomb Falls along Leroy Mountain Road in Bradford County.

If you’ve always wanted to explore the eastern part of PA, then The Best Waterfalls in the Poconos Road Trip is exactly what you’re looking for!

A road map to the best waterfalls in the Poconos region of eastern Pennsylvania.

This 209 mile round-trip road trip will take you to some of tallest and most scenic waterfalls in PA.

Raymondskill Falls in Pennsylvania
Upper and middle tiers of Raymondskill Falls, the tallest waterfall in Pennsylvania.

24 Must-See Waterfalls in the PA Laurel Highlands is my hand-picked list of the best waterfalls in Somerset, Fayette, and Westmoreland Counties!

Fall foliage at Ohiopyle Falls in the Laurel Highlands.
Fall foliage at Ohiopyle Falls in the Laurel Highlands.

How about a road trip to see the best abandoned places in PA.

a road map to 9 of the best abandoned places in Pennsylvania.

I’ve mapped out a 587 mile route that takes you to nine of Pennsylvania’s most intriguing abandoned places.

The western portal of Rays Hill Tunnel along the Abandoned PA Turnpike
The Abandoned PA Turnpike near Breezewood.

13 Must-See Attractions Along Interstate 80 may just surprise you with how many great things there are to see along this 311 mile stretch of concrete and asphalt.

Rosecrans Falls in Clinton County Pennsylvania on a foggy summer morning.
Rosecrans Falls in Clinton County, just off Interstate 80.

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