The Devil’s Kettle Waterfalls, along Minnesota’s North shore on Lake Superior, has kept folks baffled as to where all the water goes.
Side-by-side waterfalls send half of a river to Lake Superior. But the other half? No one’s been able to figure it out.
Devil’s Kettle falls is situated in north-eastern Minnesota’s Judge Magney State Park and is very unusual, and even mysterious. As shown in the above video, the Brule River splits into two. One side continues along it’s merry way to Lake Superior, the other mysteriously disappears into a deep crater and nobody knows where it goes! In other words, in the odd case of the Devil’s Kettle the disappears underground.
Is there a giant living in a cave and and using this water to cook and shower?
Scientists are sure that the water either eventually rejoins the rest of the river or has its own underwater outlet into Lake Superior. However, every attempt to trace the path of this half of the river has failed. Here are themost plausible explanations:
1. Limestone Cave
The geology of the region isn’t conducive to creating caves or underground rivers as the type of rock under the waterfall is rhyolite (hard, igneous, volcanic rock) and not limestone. However the nearest limestone to Judge C. R. Magney State Park is hundreds of miles away, so an underground river of this sort doesn’t seem to be a reasonable solution to the mystery.
Look at this map of easily dissolved rocks in the USA.
This is what’s inside the Devil’s Kettel:
2. Lava Tube
A photo of Thurston Lava Tube in Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, Hawaii by Frank Schulenburg
The solution to the Devil’s Kettle mystery might be a lava tube. Some lava tubes can be very large (up to fifty feet in diameter) and long. The most extensive known example is Kazumura Cave in Hawaii which is over forty miles in length. The problem is that even though rhyolite is a volcanic rock, it never forms lava tubes.
3. Fault Line
Sometimes water can flow along a fault line. However, there is no indication of a fault line in the area of the waterfall.
So what happens to half the Brule River at this point still remains a geologic mystery and oddity.