Raven Cliff Falls Loop Trail is a 7.5 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Cleveland, SC that features a waterfall and is rated as difficult. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail.
Combining the Raven Cliff Falls trail, the Gum Gap trail, the Naturaland Trust trail, and the Dismal trail for a great adventure! This is a great workout with a tremendous payoff. We hiked trail #11(FHT/Raven Cliff Falls,easy) to trail #13 (Gum Gap,easy). We followed Gum Gap to trail #14 (Natureland Trust, strenuous) over the suspension bridge and down the the side towards Matthews Creek at the bottom. Along the way there is a great break spot on a ledge(see photo) and the Catherdal formation (also see photo). This section is very steep going down. We crossed Matthews Creek on the cables and started the vicious switchbacks on Trail #12 (the Dismal Trail) back to trail #11 and eventually the parking lot. This hike is outstanding, we had the fortune to run into a mother black bear and two cubs just after the Matthews Creek crossing. There is so much to say about this route but I would rather you experience it for yourself. Be prepared, either direction this is a hard hike with a well earned payoff. Enjoy and I'll see you on the trail!!!
Since most people go left on the loop, I chose to go right so as to reward myself with the falls as opposed to seeing them at the start. Made it about 3/4 of the way through the loop itself before I wound up off park property. Pretty sure I made a wrong turn at some point, but after crossing a creek that went halfway up my shins, I walked for another 45 minutes or so, only to realize that the number of forks in the trail was still increasing. Ended up stopping and going back the way I came, as the trail was unmarked and I am by no means a survival expert. Great hike all around though. Will definitely come back and try going left to see if I can find where I went wrong.
Thought going down dismal was tough, until I went up the pink. The leaves make it dangerous, wear hiking boots and be CAREFUL!!
I came about this amazing trail, a few years ago, on a Girl Scout trip. I loved the views, the challenge, every single moment. I've wanted to go back for awhile now.
Parked in the lot across the street. Took the red trail to the blue trail then took pink to the suspension bridge. Turned around and headed back to the car. Don't do the overlook, it isn't as cool as the suspension bridge. We would have continued on pink, but it increased in diffculty and it takes you further away from where you park.
perfect for one day hiking.
Great hike with some interesting challenges. We decided on the clockwise loop after visiting the overlook first. By the time we had crossed the suspension bridge I was certainly glad the hardest part was behind me. The trails are marked pretty well but there were times I was VERY glad to see that blaze mark. The intersections are marked very well with maps. I would recommend being very familiar with the route you want to take before setting out. Many times you could be on the right trail, but going in the wrong direction. The view from the overlook is too far away. And with the current drought, the amount of water is greatly diminished. The view from the bridge is nice but you certainly don't see all the falls when you're overhead. I wanted to find a spot where I could get a good view of the falls on the way up but didn't find one. It took us about 5 hours including a couple of stops.
Took the loop counterclockwise with a couple spurs here and there. This makes the descent the steepest portions. The best part of this trail is around the falls and cliffs. The rest of the trail is average at best for the region. Lots of people on the early portions of the trail with far fewer the deeper you go.
This is a great, stout hike; well marked and varied. Suggest clockwise loop; Falls Trail (Red) to Dismal Trail (Purple) to Naturaland Trust Trail (Pink) to Gum Gap Trail (Blue) back to Falls Trail (Red) and the parking lot. I've got this loop at closer to 9 miles. The vertical descent on Dismal and ascent on Naturalland Trust is significant, but loads of fun and a nice challenge. Bring some nutrition and at least 20 ounces of water, more if you aren't able or willing to filter an additional 20 ounces at the creek above the falls; about 1/2 way through the loop. Have fun outside and keep each other safe, cheers!
Long hike through some beautiful forests, incredible waterfall. Have hike this trail twice.
loved the hike,, Just wish there had been more water over the falls
I may be directionally challenged, but this trail was So confusing and got lost/went wrong ways too much on these trails..and the naturland "trust trail" HA! Prepare for a decline, I wound up walking about 2miles past the raven cliff falls bridge on this trail, unaware of its difficulty and had to just turn around and go ALL the way back up the steep terrain, it prob would of been more enjoyable if I knew where I was going, but I "Wing It" on a lot of things lol..
This was a fantastic hike. I definitely recommend taking the dismal trail at the beginning of the hike and looping around and taking the easier section towards the end of the hike. I started at 9:45 AM and got off the trail around 2:45 PM, I took a slight detour to take a look at the side of the falls. I will definitely go again and probably take the same route. Today was absolutely gorgeous and perfect day to experience the beauty at Caesars Head! My fit bit told me that I hiked closer to 9 miles.
We started at the trailhead across the street from the Raven Cliff Falls parking area off 276. It was marked "foothills trail", but was the start of Raven Cliff Falls Trail (#11 + red on the map). This section of the hike was moderate. We then took Gum Gap/Foothills Trail (#14 + blue) which was easy to Naturaland Trust Trail (#14 + pink). This part was a little more steep, moderate/hard, but it was lightly trafficked and we were only on it for about 15 min before arriving at Raven Cliff Falls. The Falls has several areas to sit and rest and is a pretty area. The bridge is here, too. From the parking lot to the Falls took about 1hr and 45min. Would definitely do this hike again.
This is a great workout with some really pretty views and rest spots. We've hiked it clockwise and counterclockwise, and I'd highly suggest doing it clockwise and getting Dismal Trail out of the way first and doing it downhill. This leaves you with a very tough, technical climb up Naturaland, but you're still toward the beginning of your hike. If you go counterclockwise you're hitting the long climb up Dismal last.
I suggest hitting the overlook first, then backtracking to Dismal and Naturaland. The Cathedral is beautiful and cool and a nice resting spot, but of course, the main reward is getting to the bridge over Raven Cliff Falls. Further up the trail, after you cross the bridge, there are some great little spots where you can get to other parts of the waterfall - well worth seeing. The hike back from the waterfall clockwise is long but not difficult or very technical at all. Take plenty of water, allow for around 5 hours, and enjoy!
I went Raven Cliff Falls Trail to Gum Gap, to Naturaland, to Dismal, and finally Raven Cliff again back up to the parking lot. It pushed me pretty hard. I would recommend going this way instead of the opposite because even though hiking up Dismal was definitely tough, I cant imagine having to hike up Naturaland. It would honestly be more of a climb. Otherwise the trail is very beautiful and the waterfalls, especially the big one, are amazing.