GeoSights—Cascade Falls, Kane County, Utah

Nestled in the northwestern corner of Kane County is a geologically unique feature that receives relatively few visitors. Although most people in Utah have seen caves and waterfalls, it is peculiar for a waterfall to emerge from a cave system. Cascade Falls does just that, as an underground river emerges from a deep cave system and cascades down a steep cliff face.

The cave system is the product of sinkholes within the water-soluble rocks of the Claron Formation of the Markagunt Plateau. This incredible cascading waterfall first formed when an ancient lava flow dammed the drainage in a narrow valley, creating Navajo Lake.

Water from this lake found its way through the water-soluble marl (freshwater limestone) of the Claron Formation, eventually forming a cave system that extends a little over a mile from below the southeastern end of Navajo Lake to the Pink Cliffs escarpment at Cascade Falls.