dogs on leash
The falls themselves were nice, but if you're planning to come out, be aware that the trail is literally one giant corkscrew loop going straight up. It's a moderately difficult hike that will take you a few hours to complete from front to end, with beautiful vistas overlooking the waterfalls and Blue Ridge Mountains. Certain parts of the trail are pretty slippery as well, so make sure you bring shoes with good traction. Get there early in the day to avoid traffic.
My girlfriend and I did this as a day hike. Totally doable if you start early enough and are in somewhat decent shape. We took about 6 hours including a couple breaks. There are also a healthy number of established campsites along the way if you want to break it into a multi-day trip. I would also come back in the summer just to play around in the water on the Mau-Har Trail.
I didn't have time to do even half of this trail so will have to come back, but the part I did do was great.
From Rt. 56 to the Harper's Creek campground was not very hard. A gradual upward climb to a ridge, then down to the campground. The section after the campground was steeper and much rockier, but doable.
Once you reach the ridge that runs up to the summit there are endless views on both sides. This ridge has several knobs, with the last one covered in large boulders, and the steepest part I climbed.
Parking lot was not crowded, and I saw maybe 10 people at the campground, but nobody along the trail.