Ok, one of the problems with New England photography is that even the most famous locations can be difficult to find. To a degree
|NOT the real Pulpit Falls|
seemed to match most of the descriptions that I had found on the web, but I still had questions. The falls seemed smaller than I expected and they were too close to the road. Some explorers, like Kris of Wicked Dark Photography, described a deep gorge leading to the falls and that didn’t in any way match what I had found. Thank goodness I titled my article “Finding Pulpit Falls, Possibly”, because, as I discovered last weekend, I wasn’t even close. In retrospect, my final conclusion in the article was appropriate, “… until I can get back to explore when the snow has cleared, all I can say is that I was sure I had found the right starting point and I may have found Pulpit Falls”.
|Pulpit's First Drop|
Since my last visit I had been haunted by the suspicion that Pulpit Falls lay deeper within the forest. After a substantial rain last Saturday, I decided that it was a good time to take another stab at finding the falls. I parked in the same pull over on Route 10 and Nellie and I followed the short trail down to Pauchaug Brook. The walking was much easier without the two feet of snow that faced us the first time. All the descriptions describe following the brook upstream to the falls, but the problem is that the stream splits. I had previously followed the left branch, which was by far the strongest, but I never found any major waterfalls. This time I decided to follow the weaker channel which headed southwest into the center of the forest. The bushwhacking was not difficult, but I became increasingly depressed as the brook faded to a trickle.
“How could this possibly become a ragging cascade”. I was close to giving up when I heard the distant sound of falling water. An essential rule of waterfall questing is to follow the sound of the water. Keeping the sound to my front I climbed over a small ridge and down into a lovely forest valley. As the faint rush became a thunderous roar I finally discovered Pulpit Falls plummeting from the gentle valley floor into a steep gorge. Some of the descriptions of Pulpit Falls talked about a unimpressive show, but, at least with the nice spring run-off, it was quite spectacular.
The falls descends in two drops. The first is an unobstructed plummet alongside interesting layered rock formations. I only
|Pulpit Falls, Definitely!|
A surprising turn happened when I began to explore the gentle cascades above the falls on Houghton Brook. Nellie first notice someone setting up to shoot at the top of the falls. It turned out to
|Houghton Brook Meanders|
Now that I have finally found Pulpit it is time to seek out other elusive waterfalls in my region. Next on the list is Fay Falls in Walpole. I have already be there once and found some lovely cascades. Perhaps with two or three more visits I will actually find the waterfall!