Name of Waterfall

Coliseum Falls


Coliseum Falls is accessed from the Arethusa Falls trailhead, which is well signed along Route 302 in Crawford Notch State Park, about halfway between Bartlett and Gates of the Notch. To reach Bemis Brook Falls, find the Bemis Brook Trail which branches left from the Arethusa Falls Trail about 0.2 mile from the parking lot, then follows Bemis Brook and reaches Fawn Pool and Coliseum Falls shortly after. Continuing along this path will find it pass Bemis Brook Falls and then rejoining the Arethusa Falls Trail at the 0.7 mile mark.Coliseum Falls is the smallest of the three waterfalls along Bemis Brook, but is perhaps in possession of more character than the other two combined. The falls consist of three distinct sections of falls over a run of perhaps 150 linear feet. The upper section of the falls is a 10-foot tall plunge over blocky, fractured bedrock which was on our most recent visit unfortunately littered with wind-fallen trees. The second part of the series is responsible for coining the falls' moniker; a small horseshoe-shaped cascade which falls perhaps 2-3 feet, but over layered bedrock which has been fractured at a staggered rate, which forms a dozen micro stair-steps along the length of the horseshoe shape such that the formation looks like a miniature coliseum. The final section is a further extension of the cascades which slide over smooth rock, pitching slightly steeper for the final 5 vertical feet where the stream glides into a large basin known as Fawn Pool.
Despite the relatively small drainage area of Bemis Brook, Coliseum Falls is a fairly consistent waterfall. The stream flow does drop noticeably from the spring freshet to the autumn months, but because the stream is much more constricted here than at Arethusa Falls, so the falls will still appear modestly respectable during the dry season.

Other Names




IWC Rating (International Waterfall Classification)


Total Height (ft)


Tallest Drop


Number of Drops


Average Width


Average High Volume (Cubic ft per second)

10 cfs (6 months)

Average Low Volume (Cubic ft per second)

1 cfs (6 months)


20 degrees

Run (ft)


Watershed or Feeder Stream

Bemis Brook