10 Things You Don’t Know About Niagara Falls

10 Things You Don’t Know About Niagara Falls

niagara falls from skylon tower


To introduce Niagara Falls to any person living in Canada is absurd as it is one of the greatest places to visit. However, many people who visit Canada from abroad do not know much about Niagara Falls and this article will give you some secrets that even most Canadians are not aware of. We strongly suggest that if you haven’t already done so, take a trip to Niagara Falls to see this magnificent world wonder with your own eyes, because words and photos can only do so much. If you woould like to take a day tour from Toronto to Niagara falls check out Day Tour from Toronto to Niagara Falls. Actually the Niagara Falls is a name given to three waterfalls that straddle between the international borders of Canada and USA. The total height of Niagara Falls is 167ft or 51m and the areas that form the southern end of the falls is the province of Ontario from the Canadian side and the state of New York from the American side. The green colour of the water is due to the erosion that takes place due to the water force within the falls which creates rock flour. One of the most interesting facts that have been revealed by the Canadian Geological department is that the falls came into being some 20,000 years ago as a result of Wisconsin glaciations. If the current rate of erosion remains the same then according to experts the falls will cease to exist after 50,000 years. It has also been discovered that the waterfalls have moved about 7 miles southward due to the rate of erosion which caused them to retreat. The cities of New York and Ontario have been connected by means of two international bridges which are named as Whirlpool Rapids Bridge and the Rainbow Bridge. Below are top 10 interesting facts about Niagara Falls and the related statistical data.

1. Water flow volume

niagara falls water flow
About 3,160 tons of water flow through the Niagara Falls every second. The Canadian side however dominates the situation and the estimated water flow at the Canadian side is 681,750 gallons per second as compared to American side which has a total volume of 75,750 gallons per second. The Horseshoe Falls that are located in Ontario Canada hit the ground with a force of 2,509 ton per second. It is also to be noted that annually 4 million KW of electricity is produced by the dams that are built at the falls.

2. Horseshoe Falls

horseshoe falls niagara fallsThe Niagara Falls is a combination of Horseshoe Falls, Bridal Veil Falls and the American Falls and they make up ¼ of fresh water supply of the world. The most interesting fact in this regard is that 90% of total water flow of the Niagara Falls is situated in Canada and the American Falls make up the other 10%. This is why the majority of tourists to Niagara falls come to the Canadian falls instead of the American falls, since Canadian falls offer a close-up of most of the water falling down. The Horseshoe Falls is visited by 12 million tourists annually and the rim of the Horseshoe Falls is also the second-largest in the world after the Victoria Falls in Africa i.e. 792m.

3. 1969 American Falls Closure

1969 American Falls Closure
In 1969 the water over the American Falls was stopped completely for several months. The idea behind the fact was to remove the loose rock from beneath the falls so that the appearance can be made adorable. Several surveys were conducted by both the American and the Canadian Geological Department but in the end it was revealed that the expense is too great so the idea was dropped altogether.

4. Niagara River

niagara river
This river is about 58 kilometers in length and it has been created naturally. Niagara River is an outlet from Lake Erie to Lake Ontario. Both the lakes have an elevation of 100m out of which the half is occurred at the falls. The total area of the Niagara River is about 684,000 and it is among the largest rivers of the world in terms of volume of water inside. During the peak time through the year the total water drained into the river is about 6 million cubic ft. The lower Niagara River formed is formed by the Horseshoe Falls which drop an elevation of about 188ft.

5. Daredevils and Niagara

daredevils and niagara falls
Becoming a daredevil at the Niagara is never recommended and it is all due to the fact that if the person is saved then he needs to pay a fine of $10,000 plus the cost of rescue. In the past several people have dared to challenge the falls and most of them lost their lives. First such stunt was performed in the year 1859 by Charles Blondin who walked over the Horseshoe Falls on a tight rope suspended and luckily he survived. In 1911 Bobby Leach was the first person who suffered severe injuries while he attempted to cross the falls in a steel barrel. He spent 6 months in the hospital with broken knee caps and dislocated jaw. Every year average of 25 people commit suicide at the falls and over 5000 corpses have been recovered from Horseshoe Falls alone since 1850. However out of total number of people who challenged the Horseshoe Falls only 15 survived and rest all died.

Honeymoon Bridge Ontario

honeymoon bridge Niagara Falls Ontario
Also known by the names of Upper Steel Arch Bridge and Fallsview Bridge was located at the spot where Rainbow Bridge is located. The bridge is still unknown to many tourists that visit the spot as the history is not widespread. It was 14 feet closer to American Falls as compared to the Rainbow Bridge. The construction started in the 1897 and the bridge was opened for the following year. In 1938 a sudden ice storm brought about 100 feet of pushing from Lake Erie against the bridge and resultantly it collapsed.

Nikola Tesla and Niagara Falls Hydro Electricity Plant

Niagara Falls Hydro Electricity Plant
Born in Croatia in 1856 Tesla is still regarded as the biggest inventor of all times. His inventions like alternate current and x-rays transformed the world all together. In relation to Niagara Falls the biggest achievement of Tesla is that he is the first person to build a hydro electric power station at the falls in 1896. He along with George Westinghouse laid foundation of Niagara Falls Power plant which has now been inaugurated as Adam’s power station no. 3. This place is now regarded as a national landmark site as it is the place where Tesla turned the stones in the field of Hydro electric power supply. Niagara Falls is thus a spot where Tesla finally won and the world is today enjoying the fruits of alternate current that has enlightened the globe.

Tesla Monument

nikola tesla monument niagara falls
Tesla monument has been erected on both sides of the Niagara Falls. The sculpture that was inaugurated in the New York was presented by Yugoslavia in 1976 and was made by Franco Krsinic. The part of the New York City has also been named after the great inventor and thus it is known as Tesla Corner. On the Canadian side of Niagara Falls the Tesla monument has been established at Queen Victoria Park Ontario. The sculpture was unveiled in 2006 on 150th birthday of Tesla. This sculpture has been designed by Les Drysdale of Hamilton Ontario.

Cave of Winds

cave of the winds niagara falls
It was a natural cave that has been formed as a result of water erosion and force. It is located behind the Bridal Veil Falls and is now a part of Niagara Falls state park. In 1954 due to heavy landslides and rock fall the cave was closed but the remains are still a tourist attraction. It is a place where a person can see fish travelling down the falls. It has been estimated that over 90% of fish that travel down the falls survive due to the white foam that act as a cushion.

Niagara Whirlpool

niagara whirlpool
According to Canadian Geological department the Niagara Whirlpool was created 4,200 years ago due to erosion in the Niagara River. The depth of Niagara Whirlpool is 125m. The best place to view the Whirlpool is Niagara Glen Nature Reserve where the clockwise motion of the whirlpool can be seen. However it is also to be noted that when more water is diverted by the power stations the direction reverses. The total basin area of whirlpool is ~189,000sq meters and the water flow speed is nine miles per second.