Upper Falls on Red Creek

Unlike the ledge falls below, this is a cascade into a modest, parallel-sided pool about 25 feet long that gets eight feet deep. That empties onto a large slab about the size of a dance floor. Best when water levels on Red Creek are higher. On the eastern side is a nice little stack of rock. The best thing this has going for it is privacy. It doesn’t seem to get lots of people, even though the trail on the western side is pretty apparent. There’s potential rump bumping above the cascade with relatively smooth rock running for 150 to 200 feet. The angle is kind of shallow, though. There’s also a pocket of sand about the size of a double bed.

Perhaps more interesting than the swimming holes is the wildlife, specifically the number of deer in the Monongahela National Forest and its surroundings. In the evening it’s not unusual to see 40 or 50 deer grazing on a hillside.

They’re not plentiful, but since they’re in the wilderness they’re not hunted and as such are very passive.

One man from Elkins said that during a boyhood trip into the Dolly Sods Wilderness she carried a wooden hiking stick. Each time he got close enough to a deer to throw it and hit the deer, he carved a notch in the handle. At the end of five days he had seven notches in his stick.

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