Some people look for the ultimate summer rush in the form of free falling from insanely tall cliffs into various bodies of water. It begins with a leap of faith and a surge of adrenaline, and is rewarded with a burst of refreshing victory.
If that sounds like your cup of tea then be sure to grab a few buddies, not just for fun, but mostly because there is safety in numbers and head out to one of these amazing dive sites that nature created for your enjoyment!
Crater Lake National Park | Oregon
Aside from its breathtaking beauty and gorgeous blue hues, this dive site also offers a little extra chill which adds to its revitalizing qualities. The temperature stands at around 55 degrees near the surface, which is still bearable but definitely low enough to give you a bit of shock at the end. A bonus to this dive is that at 2,000ft in depth, it’s impossible to hit the bottom.
Red Rocks Park | Vermont
If you’re not a seasoned jumper then it would be wise to sit this one out, but feel free to tag along for the excitement of watching. With cliffs as tall as 76 feet, accompanied by jagged openings and freezing water temperatures, this dive is classified as one of the most dangerous. It’s definitely something to add to the bucket list, just not at the top.
Havasupai Falls | Arizona
Similar to cliff jumping, waterfall jumping provides the thrill with a bit of a softer landing. After a 10 mile hike you reach this hidden jewel of the southern rim of the Grand Canyon. The crystal blue waters offer a perfect place to land, and the best part is the cliffs that range from low to mid-level so there is something for everyone, regardless of experience level.
Kahekili’s Leap | Hawaii
This is another one reserved for the pros. According to an ancient tale, Kahekili the Birdman King, required his warriors to jump from the top of the falls and take the 63 foot plunge into shallow waters in order to prove their loyalty. It’s an interesting story, but if you don’t have something to prove, then you’re better off getting a bit more experience under your belt before attempting this one.
The Caney Fork Gorge | Tennessee
If you’re looking for a little more of a country setting, make your way down to Rock Island State Park. Located 84 miles from Nashville, this dive site comes complete with various waterfalls that leads to one of the best swimming holes in the state. Before attempting this one you’ll want to check the water level, but after that, you can pick your preferred spot and jump right in!
Guffey’s Gorge | Colorado
Previously one of Colorado’s best kept secrets, Guffey’s Paradise Cove is just a short hike from Colorado Springs. Even though the secret is out, the good news is that this spot still tends to be a fairly low key location, so you can find some peace and hop right in.
Possum Kingdom Lake | Texas
Everything is bigger in Texas, including the cliffs! Red Bull has even hosted competitions at Possum Kingdom Lake, in which the most daring of jumpers will leap from the 80-foot cliffs for the chance to be declared the winner. For those that are a little less into the extreme sport aspect, there are 20-foot cliffs at the dive site as well, which aren’t as risky, but sure to provide a thrill.
Aztec Falls | California
Begin your journey at San Bernadino National Forest and try your luck at finding Aztec Falls. If you’re successful, you will reach one of the best cliff diving spots around. With varying cliff heights, you can go for an intense rush from the very top at 60 feet, or just take it easy with some 5 foot leaps. It’s a good place to build your experience level.
Hippie Hole | Alabama
If you’re craving a real backwoods experience, meaning really roughing it on a treacherous hike full of rowdy teenagers, then this is the place for you! It may seem a bit risky, but that just adds to the rush. If you need to stop and ask the locals for directions, then Hippie Hole also goes by the name of “Martha’s Falls.” If you turn right from the Little River Canyon Falls parking lot you can make your way to the next gravel lot. From there, you can follow the rocky trail to your destination. Good luck!
St. Mary’s Glacier | Colorado
For this location, start by hiking up a 1.8 mile loop trail, and then leap into the chilly waters below to cool off. The cliffs here are for low to medium experience levels, but the real challenge is tolerating the icy waters of this glacier-fed lake. In fact, you can usually find skiers on a nearby glacier.
With so many exciting places the only thing left to do is figure out which one to visit first!