Devil's Punchbowl Falls

City of Hamilton / Stoney Creek, Ontario, Canada

About Devil’s Punchbowl Falls

Hiking Distance: almost roadside
Suggested Time:

Date first visited: 2013-10-12
Date last visited: 2013-10-12

Waterfall Latitude: 43.21039
Waterfall Longitude: -79.75597

Waterfall Safety and Common Sense

Devils Punchbowl Falls (or simply Devil’s Punchbowl) was probably the lone disappointing experience we had of the six waterfalls we visited in the Hamilton area during our October 2013 trip.

This waterfall was where Stoney Creek would typically make a high 40m plunge into a semi-circular amphitheater, which was how I’d imagine the Devil’s Punchbowl Gorge got its name.

Devils_Punchbowl_Falls_ON_027_10122013 - The barely-visible Devil's Punchbowl Falls in the semi-circular Devil's Punch Bowl Gorge
The barely-visible Devil’s Punchbowl Falls in the semi-circular Devil’s Punch Bowl Gorge

However, as you can see from the photo above, we happened to catch the falls with little flow, which made it especially difficult to see given its free-falling characteristic.

We were aware that our visit was late in the season so I’d imagine that late Spring and early Summer would be better times to see this otherwise thin falls.

Given the low flow, we only bothered to view the Devils Punchbowl Falls from the limited viewpoints on the rim of the gorge.

The gorge itself was interesting and the surrounding Autumn colors would’ve been the real icing on the cake had the falls flowed better.

Devils_Punchbowl_Falls_ON_021_10122013 - Looking towards some kind of cross-shaped tower around the Devil's Punch Bowl Gorge
Looking towards some kind of cross-shaped tower around the Devil’s Punch Bowl Gorge

In addtion, we also noticed there was a trail that descended on the north side of the escarpment (facing Hamilton) before swinging around towards the punchbowl amphitheater itself.

Since we didn’t do this latter option, we can’t really say more about it.

Perhaps what we appreciated more about this waterfalling experience was the gorgeous view over the City of Hamilton near some kind of tower shaped like a cross.

Although Hamilton was better known as the City of Steel, it seemed like the city was really trying to rebrand itself as the City of Waterfalls.

Devils_Punchbowl_Falls_ON_003_10122013 - Looking towards the City of Hamilton as we looked away from the Devil's Punch Bowl Gorge
Looking towards the City of Hamilton as we looked away from the Devil’s Punch Bowl Gorge

By the way, we could definitely appreciate its Mordor-like reputation as we were definitely able to see some hideous smoke stacks in the distance.

There was even a Niagara Falls border guard questioning us as to why we would even bother visiting the city.

Nevertheless, we found the view over the city was beautiful, especially since it was backed by the vast Lake Ontario.


Devils Punchbowl Falls resides in the City of Hamilton in the province of Ontario, Canada. It is administered by the Hamilton Conservation Authority. For information or inquiries as well as current conditions, visit their website.

Devils_Punchbowl_Falls_ON_001_10122013 - Julie walking on the lawn towards the cross tower where there was the view of Hamilton
Devils_Punchbowl_Falls_ON_002_10122013 - Our first glimpse under some pretty harsh lighting conditions of Devils Punchbowl Falls
Devils_Punchbowl_Falls_ON_014_10122013 - We spotted this eagle or hawk flying above Hamilton with Lake Ontario in the distance
Devils_Punchbowl_Falls_ON_022_10122013 - More unobstructed view of the Devil's Punchbowl Falls though I did notice some unsightly graffiti just upstream from its brink
Devils_Punchbowl_Falls_ON_051_10122013 - Tahia and some other kid about the same size as her both enjoying the view over Hamilton (actually, they were dropping dead leaves to watch them floating their way down)
Devils_Punchbowl_Falls_ON_057_10122013 - This was the start of the trail leading down to the base of Devil's Punchbowl, which we opted not to pursue given the state of the waterfall

To drive to Devil’s Punchbowl Falls from Hamilton, we headed east on the Lincoln M Alexander Parkway through Hamilton.

We took this freeway to its end where it became Mud St.

We then followed Mud St past a couple of lights towards the Upper Centennial Parkway.

Devils_Punchbowl_Falls_ON_060_10122013 - A parking meter by the lot for Devil's Punch Bowl Gorge and the Devil's Punchbowl Falls. Thus, you have to pay to park here
A parking meter by the lot for Devil’s Punch Bowl Gorge and the Devil’s Punchbowl Falls. Thus, you have to pay to park here

Turning left at this light, we then continued for 1.5km towards a fork where we left the main road for Ridge Road on the right.

Next, we followed Ridge Rd for about 1.4km towards the car park for Devils Punchbowl on the left.

For context, Hamilton was 70km (an hour drive) southwest of Toronto, 73km (under an hour drive) west of Niagara Falls, and 309km (over 3 hours drive) east of Detroit, Michigan.

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Checking out the somewhat trickling waterfall through some foliage

Right to left sweep checking out the view over Hamilton with Autumn colors

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Tagged with: hamilton, ontario, canada, waterfall, city of waterfalls, stoney creek, overlook, devils punchbowl, gorge

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Johnny Cheng

About Johnny Cheng

Johnny Cheng is the founder of the World of Waterfalls and author of the award-winning A Guide to New Zealand Waterfalls. Over the last 2 decades, he has visited thousands of waterfalls in over 40 countries around the world and nearly 40 states in the USA.
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