Turns out Canada is home to an actual pink waterfall

Updated: July 5, 2017

Pink falls Instagram: las_natura

A pink waterfall isn’t the sort of thing you’d expect to find in Canada—or anywhere, really—yet occasionally, when conditions are just right, you can come across one in Alberta.

Cameron Falls, located in Waterton Lakes National Park, is usually just a run-of-the-mill, beautiful, clear waterfall. However, when a heavy storm hits, the waters upriver from the falls get stirred up with a red mudstone called argillite. The pink waters must then flow for a couple hours before they reach the falls, but when they do, voila: pink waterfall.

Pink Cameron Falls
Rochelle Coffey captured an photo of the pink falls a few hours after a heavy storm.

Shots of this phenomenon are quite rare—after all, conditions have to be just right in order for the falls to turn pink. If you do want to catch this pastel wonder, your best bet is to go during the rainy season and try watching the falls after a heavy downpour. They usually achieve a rosy pink within a couple hours of a heavy rain.

Rochelle Coffey is one of the few people who have seen the phenomenon firsthand. After a heavy storm, she and her husband decided to go for a drive and see how much damage the storm had caused.

“We make that drive hundreds of times a year and we had always seen this crystal clear water,” she told the Daily Mail. “But this particular evening, I was shocked to see the creek tomato soup red. My husband suggested we go back down and check the falls.”

Pink river upstream from Cameron Falls
Photo by Rochelle Coffey
Before the falls themselves ran pink, the river upstream became a reddish colour.

When they arrived, the falls were still clear, but in a couple of hours, they began to change. Coffey took a few photos, one of just a few in existence capturing the pink-falls anomaly.

“The ironic thing is, I don’t shoot a lot of scenery, and this truly was being in the right place at the right time.”