From the Beltway (I-495): Take exit 44 for Route 193, Georgetown Pike. At the top of the exit ramp, there is a traffic light. If you are exiting from I-495 South, coming from Maryland and the George Washington Memorial Parkway, take a right at the light onto Route 193 West. If you are coming from I-495 North (the Inner Loop) from points south or I-66, you will take a left at the traffic light onto Route 193 West. About three miles down the road, you will come to another traffic light at the intersection of Old Dominion Dr. At the traffic light, you will see a sign for the park. Make a right at the light. Old Dominion Drive will dead end at our entrance station, about one mile down the road.
Many people consider the Great Falls of the Potomac to be the most spectacular natural landmark in the Washington D.C. area. Here, the Potomac River builds up speed and force as it falls over a series of steep, jagged rocks and flows through the narrow Mather Gorge. This dramatic scene makes Great Falls Park, located just fifteen miles from the Nation's Capital, a popular site with local residents and tourists from around the world who are visiting the Washington area. The falls consist of cascading rapids and several 20 foot waterfalls, with a total 76 foot drop in elevation over a distance of less than a mile. The Potomac River narrows from nearly 1000 feet, just above the falls, to between 60 and 100 feet wide as it rushes through Mather Gorge, a short distance below the falls. The Great Falls of the Potomac display the steepest and most spectacular fall line rapids of any eastern river.