Doane’s Falls

Royalston, Massachusetts
Doane’s Falls is an enchanting cascade that stands as the second-tallest waterfall in Massachusetts. It drops over 175 feet in total.
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About This Location

Doane’s Falls, nestled in the charming town of Royalston, Massachusetts, is a picturesque waterfall that graces the landscape with its beauty. This enchanting cascade stands proudly as the second-tallest waterfall in the state of Massachusetts, boasting a total height of 175 feet. It is a natural wonder that delights visitors year-round, although its grandeur shines most brightly in the spring when the snow melts and heavy rains rejuvenate Lawrence Brook, the stream over which it presides.

Comprising four distinct drops, Doane’s Falls is a captivating blend of plunges, cascades, and a solid block. Each segment of the waterfall is a unique work of art, with round pools at the base of some of the cascades enhancing its allure. As you explore the falls, you’ll find that each vantage point offers a different perspective, inviting you to immerse yourself in its natural beauty.

Doane’s Falls is situated within the Doane’s Falls Reservation, an area named after Amos Doane, who once owned the falls and the surrounding land during the early 19th century. In an ambitious business endeavor, Amos built a massive mill, stretching 50 feet in length and standing over four stories tall, directly above the falls. This impressive structure was intended for crafting doors, sashes, and blinds. However, despite the success of previous mills along Lawrence Brook, Amos’ venture ultimately faltered. Today, Doane’s Falls and its surrounding land are under the stewardship of The Trustees of Reservations, a nonprofit organization dedicated to preserving natural and cultural treasures.

It’s important to note that swimming and wading have been prohibited at Doane’s Falls since 2002 due to past incidents involving fatalities and injuries. The safety of visitors is of paramount concern. The Trustees of Reservations currently manage and own the waterfall and its adjacent land.

To experience the beauty of Doane’s Falls, you can follow the Doane’s Fall Trail, a well-marked and maintained 0.4-mile out-and-back trail that offers scenic views of the falls. This trail is suitable for visitors of all ages and is rated as an easy hike. Dogs are welcome to join in on the adventure, but it’s essential to keep them leashed while inside Doane’s Falls Reservation.

For those planning a visit, there are two parking areas available. The primary parking lot is conveniently located along Athol Road, providing easy access to the trailhead. Additionally, another parking area can be found further down Doane’s Falls Road. Parking is free at both locations, making it accessible to all who wish to experience the natural wonder of Doane’s Falls.

As you explore the surroundings, please remain on designated trails to help preserve the area’s natural beauty. Due to substantial erosion over the years and safety concerns, swimming, wading, and whitewater kayaking are strictly prohibited. Your visit to Doane’s Falls is an opportunity to connect with nature, and responsible exploration ensures that this magnificent natural treasure can be enjoyed by generations to come.

Location

Address: Doane Hill Road, Royalston, Massachusetts
Place GPS Coordinates: 42.648944, -72.201639
Parking GPS Coordinates: 42.648944, -72.201639
Parking Notes: There are two parking areas to access the waterfall. The primary lot is located along Athol Road and this is where the trailhead is. The additional parking area is located further down Doane’s Falls Road. Parking is free at both locations.

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