Dean Goss, the authorAbout the Website and Author

In 1969, my parents took me to Bristol Memorial Park, a small site on Baldwin Creek dedicated as a memorial to the fallen of the Korean War. The park consists of a couple of picnic tables, a short loop trail, and a footbridge over a deep and narrow gorge containing a waterfall. It must have made quite an impression on their 3 year old son.

A few years later, IBM transferred my father to California. Not once or twice, but three times I was fortunate enough to visit Yosemite National Park. The small seed that was planted in 1969 grew out of control at the sight of the waterfalls that adorn that amazing valley. In 1974, my father requested a transfer back to Vermont. I’ve been here ever since. We may not have any 2400 foot waterfalls within an easy day’s drive, but that hasn’t diminished my appreciation one iota. I began carrying a disposable camera as a way of grabbing a memory, but the underexposed and grainy images yielded by these cameras were beginning to bother me more and more. Eventually, I got an old Canon AE1 and my learning curve was put to the task. Many old rolls of film look pretty amateurish now, but each roll of film that I poorly shot was another lesson. By not replicating my mistakes, I eventually got better. Trial and error has always been my preferred method of learning.

In 1996, I began to see other photographers and waterfall enthusiasts online. Their sites spurred me to put up my own site, and the first primitive version of this site was born. Not long afterwards, I started to notice a growing trend of improvement in the quality of other sites, both in terms of content and function. The second version of the site was the result. As time went by, I began to be more aware of which of my photos were good and which were not. The time had come to get a better camera with optics of a higher quality. The result of this decision was a Canon Elan 7E. I dabbled in medium format, then large format for a while, all the time figuring out a little more about the art of photography. Perhaps the best lessons came when I switched from Fuji Reala (print film) to Fuji Velvia (slide film). At this time, I really began to think about the way film "sees" a certain image. In May of 2006, I finally made the leap to digital format, replacing the trusty Canon Elan 7E with a Canon 20D. I largely re-equipped my glass, primarily to cover a greater range of focal lengths. I've got 10-20mm, 18-55mm, 28-105mm, 75-300mm, and 420-800mm, as well as a pair of teleconverters, 2x and 3x. If you count the 1.6x magnification factor of the DSLR, I've got my focal ranges covered from about 16mm to 7840mm of optical equivalent. Needless to say, if I see a waterfall on a nearby mountainside, I'll be able to get it.

I’m not certain just what quality a waterfall possesses that intrigues me so, maybe I like the sound, maybe I like the geometry, perhaps I am awed by the power water has over rock, perhaps the negatively charged ions that remove impurities from the air has something to do with it, I don’t know. I can’t rationalize the addiction, but I can certainly enjoy it, and the fruits it yields. I can also happily share what I’ve uncovered in the hope that someone else might derive as much satisfaction and happiness as I have.

The process of discovery was almost as much fun as the field work involved. The information I present here came from many sources. The initial group of waterfalls were derived from, “The Vermont Atlas and Gazetteer,” "The New Hampshire Atlas and Gazetteer," and "The Maine Atlas and Gazetteer," all published by DeLorme Mapping. They supplied me with the names and locations of 111 waterfalls. Some of the locations given were somewhat incorrect which allowed a higher “thrill of the chase” factor. As I learned of new waterfalls, I added them to a master list that has grown steadily through the last dozen years or so. Town histories usually have a chapter devoted to a general description of the municipality, including waterways, specifically potential Mill sites. Talking with local residents will also frequently yield information. Detailed study of USGS Topographical maps will yield many potential waterfall sites. The Fish and Wildlife surveys mention "barriers to upstream migration, usually meaning a waterfall on a given watercourse.

Information comes from many places. I’ve no doubt that there are dozens, perhaps hundreds of waterfalls that I’ve not yet uncovered. Part of this lies in making the determination of exactly what constitutes a waterfall. To bypass this conundrum, I follow two criteria: the waterfall must be either a named waterfall (historical, official, or colloquial,) or 10 feet or more in height. The latter criteria are still subjective, depending on where one determines the top and bottom of a drop. I tend to mark the bottom and top of a waterfall where its scenic values begin and end. Again, this is purely subjective and others are sure to see things differently. My philosophy is quite simple: If it looks like a duck, and it quacks like a duck, it probably is a duck. The ultimate purpose of this site is to help you find and safely enjoy the splendor of the waterfalls found in the Northeastern United States.

Navigating this site

Below the site title, you will find the navigation bar.  The various buttons and menus lead to the important pages featured on this site:

Browse by State
This tab yields a drop-down menu listing several states (VT, NH, ME, MA, NY, WA, OR) and an option for Other Regions.  Selecting any of these menu options will lead to a list of all the waterfalls cataloged within each state.  The "Other Regions" option pulls up waterfalls which I've cataloged elsewhere across the world.

This tab contains two functions: Browse and Search.  The Browse option leads to a complete list of all entries in the database, sorted alphabetically.  The Search option leads to the Search Page, where you can query the database for specific waterfalls.

Best of the Northeast
This tab leads to a page detailing my picks for the Top 20 Waterfalls in the Northeastern United States.  This is based on both objective and subjective criteria including, but not limited to, height, width, scenic setting, accessibility, and photogenics.

This tab links to the Postcard gallery, which includes several hundred postcards.

This tab links to a gallery of my best work, of which prints can be purchased.

This tab yields a drop-down menu which includes 5 options.  The Introduction option leads to this page.  The Help option leads to information about using this website, and understanding the information contained therewithin.  The Photography option leads to information specifically catering to waterfall photography.  The Safety option leads to a page that offers suggestions, reminders, and warnings regarding waterfalls.  And finally, the Recent Updates option leads to a page detailing what in the database has been edited, and when.

This tab links to a page where you can contact me. I've received emails from people all over the world, please don't hesitate if you have any questions.