Cataract Falls

Snug, Tasmania

Cataract Falls (upper section)
Cataract Falls (upper section)
© 2015 - 2020 Photography: Caedence Kuepper
  • public Land Tenure:
    Nature Recreation Area
  • timer 8 kms 5 Hours return
  • terrain image Recommended for very experienced bushwalkers with specialised skills such as navigation and emergency first aid.
  • directions_walk Rough unformed track.
    No Modification of the natural environment.
  • panorama_horizontal Limited signage.
    Track head signage & route markers
  • grade Very experienced bushwalkers.
    Users require previous experience in the outdoors and a high level of specialised skills such as navigation skills. Users generally require a map and navigation equipment to complete the track. Users need to be self-reliant.
  • clear_all Occasional step.
  • map Tasmap (1:25000) - 5022 Cygnet

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The "other" waterfall on Snug River, Cataract Falls is a little known series of cascading waterfalls totalling about 20 metres in height roughly two kilometres upstream from the far more popular Snug Falls. This lack of notoriety is for good reason, as reaching Cataract Falls is extremely difficult, and should only be attempted by experienced hikers with adequate navigational equipment. 

There are a number of potential access routes that can be taken to reach Cataract Falls. Several 4WD tracks lead to within a kilometre or two of the falls and may provide possible access, however some of these tracks go through private property so before setting off ensure the route you are taking is publicly accessible.

The other way to reach Cataract Falls is by walking up the Snug River itself from Snug Falls. The first part of this hike involves climbing to the top of Snug Falls, which with extreme care is possible by scaling the steep northern bank of the river. There is a fairly specific route that has to be taken to avoid the worst of the steepness, however, and if the slope in front of you looks too steep, don't try to climb up it as a fall here could be deadly. 

Once at the top of Snug Falls, it is about a two kilometre walk upstream to Cataract Falls. It is best to walk through or right beside the river itself for most of this route, as the scrub higher up the banks is often impenetrably thick. Even hiking up the river presents numerous obstacles that must be dealt with, including large pools, and waterfalls that have to be climbed around. 

This is not a hike that is recommended for most, and is probably not even worthwhile for any besides the most dedicated waterfall baggers, as for the effort required to reach it the waterfall may prove underwhelming, nowhere near as impressive as its more famous downstream counterpart. 

Image Gallery for Cataract Falls

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Middle Cataract Falls
Cataract Falls Base

Waterfalls near Cataract Falls

Distances are measured 'as the crows fly' and are not reflective of road distance or hiking distances.

1.21 kms away

Grade 3 Hike

2.1 kms km return

1.3 kms away

Grade 4 Hike

2.5 km return

3.97 kms away

Grade 5 Hike

16 km return

4.94 kms away

Grade 3 Hike

5.2 km return

Previous & Next

Previous Waterfalls

Grade 4 Hike

6.5 km return

Next Waterfalls

Grade 5 Hike

2 km return

Avoid Private Property

Not every area in Tasmania is available for the public to explore. Watch our video tutorial to learn how to identify which areas are on public land.