One of the prettiest waterfalls in north Alabama is just steps away from Lazy River Cottage at the DeSoto Falls Area of DeSoto State Park. We recommend you take the short 3-minute stroll to visit the park first thing in the morning during your stay. It is extremely quiet, tranquil, and usually without other visitors in the early morning hours. Hearing the roar of the water and seeing its power while having the area all to yourself makes for a memorable and tranquil start to any day.
In 1925, A.A. Miller built the first hydroelectric dam in North Alabama above DeSoto Falls. There is a fascinating history to this area with A.A. Miller and Phifer Smith that took a turn after the Great Depression. We’ll share that history in another post in the near future.
Entering the Park
From Lazy River Cottage, you can walk into the state park for free. There is a $4 fee per car that enters the park.
Miller’s Bend Paddle Shack
The Miller’s Bend Paddle Shack is your stop for bathrooms, snacks, souvenirs, and kayak rentals. Lazy River Cottage guests have 4 kayaks available for guest use, but if you find you need more kayaks for a group trip upriver, you can rent kayaks by the hour right here. The rental kayaks are launched at the boat ramp by the dam. Kayak rental is seasonal from March to October.
The park has picnic tables and grills for visitor use. These areas fill up fast, especially on warm weekends and holidays.
DeSoto Falls is beautiful on its own, but the cascading water over Miller’s dam makes this area even more spectacular.
Follow the concrete path from the parking area to the staircase that leads to the rock ledge at the edge of the falls.
Keep following the black handrail to a narrow path that leads to a beautiful view of the rock walls surrounding the pool at the base of the falls and the 104-foot waterfall falling from the rock ledge above.
A Different View
If you want a more direct view of DeSoto Falls, the dam, and the pool at its base, check out the DeSoto Falls trailheads. The picture below is from the DeSoto Falls Overview trailhead, a short half-mile hike from the DeSoto Falls trailhead parking lot.
After you finish your time enjoying the beauty of the falls, take some time to enjoy the beautiful mosaic artwork on the staircase that leads back to the parking area. It’s a real treat. We love to look for the tiny, often hidden, artist’s touches on each step as we climb to the top.
Before you leave, be sure to read the new signs provided by the State Park that give you an introduction to the very interesting history of this exceptional area.
“This is the place” - A.A. Miller
We agree with Mr. Miller. It is a very special place! Lazy River Cottage, along with the State Park, provides guests the opportunity to enjoy the beauty of this extraordinary area and a place to spend time with family and friends.
Follow us on our Facebook and Instagram social media pages @littlerivervacay for more updates and pictures.
Stay With Us
We would love to host your next mountain getaway to Mentone, AL! Located on Little River by DeSoto Falls, kayak beautiful Little River during your stay at Lazy River Cottage with kayaks provided for guest use. Check out our website at www.littlerivervacay.com for more information about Lazy River Cottage in Mentone, AL, just steps from DeSoto Falls and DeSoto Falls Trailheads.
You can find us on VRBO and Airbnb.