Not so many places in Boone County, KY will one enjoy the pleasures of such a large waterfall as the one formed by the spillway of Crouch’s Treasure Lake. Because the lake has such a large watershed and water holding capacity, when the spillway runs the waterfall is a spectacular sight. You can hear it in the distance as the flow increases after rains. It is easy to access as you simply walk down the spillway when the water level is safe enough for one to walk down it. Its a great place to hang out on those warm days.
The water after it is collected in the lake is sent down a chute known as the spillway which was constructed during the rebuilding of the lake to control the height within the impoundment. It tumbles over layers of limestone and shale which are a geological peak into the areas shallow ocean past.
As it flows it chews down on the softer shale and clay layers, leaving a stair step effect as erosion of the limestone happens more slowly. It then gets to a very solid limestone layer that forms the lip of the waterfall.The waterfall spills over the lip and is slowly eroding the layers below to make it an even more dramtic plunge. The water is then concentrated in a pool below the spill and is a spot for wildlife to enjoy this lower, more secluded and protected waterhole as water is constantly springing out of the hillside. It is on the very edge of the property and once the water leaves this pool, it quickly snakes its way into the Ohio River. Depending on the flow rate the appearance of the waterfall can be drastically different. It does run most of the year but spring and fall are the best times to watch its show.
Above you can see a low-flow image where it is starting to run after the long hot summer. Above also is an image from a hillside above during a medium flow event days after a large rainfall. Sometimes the spillway rages during large rainfall events creating a very dangerous water flow actually. If you compare the pictures you notice the color of the water. When the rains are happening, soil is dislodged and turns the color of the lake brown and can be seen here. However not so long after the rains stop the water clears up.
The waterfall is just a couple of minutes walk from the clubhouse and relatively easy to access. If it has rained recently please be sure to take a peak at this splendid 15 foot waterfall. And if has rained a lot don’t go near it!