Great Trail, make sure you see the top of the hike. Well worth it.
Really great hike! Loved being next to the creek most of the way. There are many opportunities to see little hidden waterfalls and pools. The Apple Orchard Falls was also really impressive. If you choose the loop trail, it's well worth it. Starting with the AOFT trail as the first part of the loop, be prepared for a pretty steady incline for the last couple miles, coming back Cornelius Spur.
So pretty & so worth it! The hike down is easy, as you're going down hill, but coming up is a bit challenging. Worth it for the view!
beautiful waterfalls. You will love it.
I was looking for a trail within one hour drive (around) from Roanoke, about 8 miles long. The Sulphur Springs trail seems good, but a little under my goal. Looking at the map, I decided to do this loop, using the Appalachian Trail, the Sulphur Springs Trail, and the Petites Gap road to come back to the parking.
I find it well balanced, with a first part climbing easily on the ridge, then a long descent to the junction of Sulphur Springs Trail and Petites Gap Road. Then a moderate climbing back to the car. There are a few places with an overlook, perfect to take a break and have some food, for instance!
Not to crowded, but in October its not a surprise...
Totally worth the pain. Amazing!
This is a nice trail. We just hiked the portion from the parkway Sunset or Sunrise overlook to the falls and back. It was about 2.5 miles total for this section. You hike down first, so it's obviously steep on the way back up.
I think this trail is located near Buchanan in Botetourt County, not Bedford. It has been a few years for me so I am ready to go again. I have hiked it from the parkway down to the falls and I have hiked it up to the falls. From the bottom it is about an 8 mile round trip. It is one of my favorite hikes in the Roanoke area. Make sure you go after a lot of rain because the falls are so much better!
Did this loop in May 2015. The circuit named above (AOF and Cornelius Creek) is not nearly that long. If you start from the bottom, it's a little more than 5 miles - just guessing. We saw a couple of parking areas there. However, we started from Sunset Field overlook on the Blue Ridge Parkway (mile 78.4). That makes it a little more than 7 miles. From the bottom, the description we had read used the Apple Orchard Fire Road. But if you start at the top, there is extra distance on a connector trail (just more of the Cornelius trail) and the AT. Either way, it's a spectacular hike. Both AOF and Cornelius follow creeks with innumerable little cascades on them. And the weekend of our hike saw Rhododendron in full bloom (mountain laurel looked to be a few days behind). The main falls are 200 feet. That section of the trail has many steps, as you would expect on a sheer drop that creates such a waterfall. From the Parkway, we descended those steps, meaning we were going down the steepest part. If that sounds good to you, be sure to do this loop in counterclockwise fashion (all lefts). The Cornelius trail is a longer, more steady grade. No matter what direction you take, this is a fantastic hike. Not to be missed!
Great hike. We did the out and back from the Parkway. Perfect hike for the kids to try out their new packs!