Geographic location: Lot 11, Conc. 6, Stanhope
Current address: 16909 Hwy 35 Picnic Area
An old postcard calls this tumbling waterway White Horse Rapids. It was also called Davis' Rapids after a logger who dropped his jug of buttermilk into the water - leading, naturally, to the name we now know it by. It's a 70' long river of crashing white water once used to carry logs from William Cameron's Halls Lake mill to Boshkung Lake.
The old winches used to heave squared logs into the gains to control water levels still stand atop the dam, and the old one-lane road bridge runs in front of it. The concrete structure that divides the upper part of the waterway was built to replace the earlier wooden log chute.
The old concrete abutment that runs down the upper part of Buttermilk Falls was a log chute. Where the picture was taken for this postcard, the section closest to the camera was made of wood.
(Photo from Explore Haliburton by Susan Wilson (Stoddard Books, 1997))
Buttermilk Falls has been home to a bowling alley, roller skating rink, dance hall, post office and general store. The post office closed in 1938 and the other buildings burned down in 1951.
The original general store and gas pumps, pictured below, belonged to the Hewitt family of Halls Lake. It burned down in the 1930's. There are public washrooms and a picnic area here now. Below right: Butttermilk Falls Post Office
Halls Lake Dam at Buttermilk Falls 1935 from Carol Moffatt's postcard collection:
Public access: Yes, from picnic area
Current use: Scenic vista
Information source: Stanhope Heritage Driving Tour brochure / Stanhope Museum collection.