Cliff diving is an exciting way to spice up your trip or vacation. Have you ever wanted to experience the feeling of flying? You can by leaping from one of these amazing cliffs into the cold water below. It is a sensational and adrenaline producing experience and one you should consider trying at least once in your life. The heights of the rock formations vary depending on what area you go to, and some are considered “safe” dives and others, well, not so much. If you’re ever visiting or vacationing in one of these areas, leap from one of the best places to cliff dive in the U.S.
Head to Arizona
The beautiful Havasu Falls are found outside of the Grand Canyon on the Havasupai Reservation. You have to hike to reach the famous falls and then scale the cliffs to get ready for your leap. The water below you is a unique turquoise color, created from minerals that seep into the water. The drop from the top is over 100 feet, making this jump dangerous. It is not recommended that you jump from Havasu Falls, but many people do, and most have lived to tell the tale.
Hawaii’s Kahekili’s Leap
This jump is considered one of the more “safe” dives from a towering cliff at 80 feet in the air. This jump has some history behind it, as it is known for the location of where a chief sent his warriors to leap from the rock called Kaunolu cliff, to prove themselves both in courage and in loyalty. There are other rocks on the Hawaiian Islands to leap from that are quite popular as well. Consider the Puu Kekaa on Maui for your adrenaline rush.
Malibu Creek in Sunny California
Malibu Creek is famous and has appeared in several films including Planet of the Apes. Just a short one hour away from Los Angeles makes this spot a nice addition to your list of things to see while in the area. The surrounding rock walls can be scaled to certain heights, or you can hike to the top and jump from there. Jumps from the Malibu Creek can be anywhere from 20 feet all the way to 70 feet if you’re feeling brave. The pool below has depths that can accommodate jumpers, but the area is a bit narrow, so don’t miss!
Possum Kingdom Lake in Texas
The lake is found along the Brazos River and is a hotspot for recreation, partying and fun to be had. The lake is over 16,000 acres, and its fresh waters are thoroughly enjoyable in the summer months. This was also the official location of the 2014 Red Bull Cliff Diving World Series. Competitors tried to perfect their leaps from cliffs towering above 80 feet in the air. You can jump too, although it is recommended that you hover around the 20-foot jump range instead.
The Deepest Lake in America for the Best Cliff Dives
The famous Crater Lake can be found in Oregon State and is known as the deepest lake in America. This is considered a National Park area, and there is a stern warning against cliff diving, but many do anyway. The areas to jump from aren’t quite as high as others, making this a more realistic option for some people who want to try it but are timid. The lake water is a beautiful dark blue. The waters are still, and the surrounding edges of the lake are mountainous and hilly, making for a great view as you splash into the water below. Beware once you hit the water, as the temperature is extremely chilly!
The Red Rocks Park in Vermont
Lake Champlain is the highlight of this trip, and the 100 acres surrounding it are all park areas. The cliffs measure over 70 feet high, making for a scary splash down to the cold water below. There is a 40-foot ledge available if you get scared and want to try something a little less intense. There is a narrow area to hit the water, so aim carefully, as you don’t want to splash into the rock faces that surround the small splash zone.
Utah’s Lake Powell Jumps
Lake Powell lies across the border of Arizona and Utah, so it lies in two states. The desert scenery and arid atmosphere combined with a stunning and large blue lake make for some dramatic scenery. The cliffs surrounding the lake are yellow and orange colored, offsetting the blue water even further. While you can find all sorts of heights to jump into the deep waters from, there are warnings because fatalities have occurred here. Local authorities may be pushing for people to stop, but some still do anyway. If you decide to leap, use extreme caution and preferably a lower ledge.
Lake Superior’s Black Rocks
The summer months provide incredible opportunities to have fun at Lake Superior. The Black Rocks tower over the lake in Marquette, Michigan. They offer a stunning scene and some fun sights to watch. Lake visitors and locals crowd the area to watch the brave divers as they leap from the top of the Black Rocks. The water is deep enough for ample diving, and the splash zone area is large, so divers don’t have to worry about where they land. The peak is intimidating and quite high, so gather that courage and experience the feeling of flying.
The Mound located in Lake Arrowhead
California’s Lake Arrowhead is two hours from Los Angeles and a favorite for the ultimate jumping experience. Climb up to the 70-foot ledges and take the plunge, or try a lower rock or ledge for your first time. The water is beautiful and deep and many dive head first. The massive rock walls look like something human-made but rest assured they are just some of the nature’s fabulous creations. This area is also called Gilligan’s Island if you need to ask for directions.
Jump, Dive, or Leap, but Don’t Fall
While cliff diving may not be on everyone’s list of things to do, it can add excitement and give you a great story to tell and pictures to show. Are you a first-timer? Try a lower ledge or a known “safe” diving place for your experience. Use caution in some of these areas, as the pools below are a narrow target to hit and rocks walls may protrude, making your descent more difficult. Many of the best places to cliff dive require a hike or climb to get to, and you can only enjoy the view from the top before leaping or walking back down.