Niagara Falls

Niagara Falls (Cayuga: Gahnawehtaˀ or Tgahnawęhtaˀ) is the collective name for three waterfalls that straddle the international border between the Canadian province of Ontario and the U.S. state of New York. They form the southern end of the Niagara Gorge.

From largest to smallest, the three waterfalls are the Horseshoe Falls, the American Falls and the Bridal Veil Falls. The Horseshoe Falls lie on the Canadian side and the American Falls on the American side, separated by Goat Island. The smaller Bridal Veil Falls are also located on the American side, separated from the other waterfalls by Luna Island. The international boundary line was originally drawn through Horseshoe Falls in 1819, but the boundary has long been in dispute due to natural erosion and construction.

Located on the Niagara River which drains Lake Erie into Lake Ontario, the combined falls form the highest flow rate of any waterfall in the world, with a vertical drop of more than 165 feet (50 m). Horseshoe Falls is the most powerful waterfall in North America, as measured by vertical height and also by flow rate. The falls are located 17 miles (27 km) north-northwest of Buffalo, New York and 75 miles (121 km) south-southeast of Toronto, between the twin cities of Niagara Falls, Ontario, and Niagara Falls, New York.

Niagara Falls were formed when glaciers receded at the end of the Wisconsin glaciation (the last ice age), and water from the newly formed Great Lakes carved a path through the Niagara Escarpment en route to the Atlantic Ocean. While not exceptionally high, the Niagara Falls are very wide. More than 6 million cubic feet (168,000 m3) of water falls over the crest line every minute in high flow, and almost 4 million cubic feet (110,000 m3) on average.

The Niagara Falls are renowned both for their beauty and as a valuable source of hydroelectric power. Managing the balance between recreational, commercial, and industrial uses has been a challenge for the stewards of the falls since the 19th century.

Read more about Niagara Falls:  Characteristics, Geology, History, Preservation Efforts, Over The Falls, Tourism

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Famous quotes containing the words falls and/or niagara:

    When the deep purple falls over sleepy garden walls, and the stars begin to flicker in the sky,
    Mitchell Parish (1901–1993)

    We set up a certain aim, and put ourselves of our own will into the power of a certain current. Once having done that, we find ourselves committed to usages and customs which we had not before fully known, but from which we cannot depart without giving up the end which we have chosen. But we have no right, therefore, to claim that we are under the yoke of necessity. We might as well say that the man whom we see struggling vainly in the current of Niagara could not have helped jumping in.
    Anna C. Brackett (1836–1911)