Potato River FallsNorthern Wisconsin Waterfalls
5 Non-Electric Sites
90' High Drop
Free to Camp up to Two Weeks
Potato River Falls is one of the most spectacular waterfalls in all of Wisconsin. The Potato River drops approximately 90 feet over two drops on its way to the Bad River before eventually emptying into Lake Superior. These two drops are called Upper and Lower Potato River Falls.
The access point to hike to either one of the falls is located off Highway 169 at the end of Falls Road near the town of Gurney, WI. Gurney is approximately 20 miles west of Hurley, WI. This makes a great day trip if you are visiting the Hurley/Ironwood area.
At the end of Falls Road you will come to a park area with pit toilets and a small picnic shelter. There are also 5 rustic campsites that are first come first serve and free of charge for up to two weeks. Be aware that there is no running water or electricity so the sites are better suited to tent campers. Be sure to bring a water filter of some sort or plan on driving into town for clean drinking water.
From the parking area you can choose to hike to one or both of the two lookouts to view the Potato River Falls. The trail to the right is labeled with a sign "Lower Falls" and includes a series of 204 steps to reach the observation deck. The trail to the left from the parking area is labeled with a sign "Upper Falls". This takes along the gorge and down 131 steps to the lookout for the Upper Falls.
If you hike both trails, the total length is only a little over a mile, but be prepared for the steep up and down to get to the lookouts. If you are willing to climb a little (it's not difficult or dangerous) you can get down to the base of the first drop and look down at the top of the second drop. The nearby Copper Falls State Park is another must visit while in the area.
Make sure you stop and visit the Potato River Falls if you are in the Hurley/Ironwood or Ashland areas. Please use the following resources to plan your next visit.