Explore 2017 Planning - view hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

2017 Planning Map
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Potentially a very beautiful trail with convenient access. The trail had trash everywhere and orb weaver webs across it were constant, which required me to wave a stick out in front of me for the hike. Perhap recent heavy rains brought the trash down from elsewhere and resulted in little recent use, thus the spiderwebs. Regardless, it wasn't as pleasant as it should have been.

This is not “out & back” ; it is a loop. The paper map from the park is kinda vague. Was not clear where to park or begin. My advice: Park at the first “trailhead parking” lot on the left a little ways past the beach parking. You’ll see a little amphitheater. The trails begin across the street from this lot. Hike straight towards the campground past 2 yurts. The bathroom in the campgrounds is exceptionally clean! I did not see any trail markers in the campground. Right beside the first campsite you’ll see a paved road blocked by a park gate. This is where the orange trail starts. I hiked counterclockwise. Great little trail. Pretty rocks & ferns. Nice bench with a view. There are 5 creek crossings on the second half of the trail. No bridges, but easy to hop. When the orange trail markers end, you’ll momentarily follow the blue trail, then it changes to yellow, then white and shortly brings you back past the yurts to the parking lot where you started. Only saw one human the whole day :)

Awesome views! Trail was easy and beautiful.

Love it! We’ve been going for years and the views never get old

Beautiful views from a number of lookouts and cliffs, wildflowers all along the way in August/early September. Great for dogs on a leash, kids of all ages, only about an hour roundtrip unless you stop for lots of photos or a picnic (both of which are highly recommended).

hiking
21 days ago

My wife and I hiked this trail together this summer. Not difficult at all and very pleasant.

hiking
24 days ago

Went counterclockwise. Pretty at outset, with trail right right right up against the river. Rocky, rooty, and many many many trees down throughout the hike - evidence of storm, evidence of prescribed burn - easy to get past or around, though. Mostly shady. Averaged encounters with other hikers about every 30 minutes - nicely uncrowded for the Labor Day weekend. Welcome breeze and semi-blocked vista for picnic at top, about halfway in.

Too muddy felt like quick mud

Bully breeds are not allowed on the hiking trails and dogs are not allowed in the park itself. One star because of that and I will enjoy my hike somewhere else!

This was a rather easy hike. especially if you go left first, it makes the trail easier. but this one was one of the most rewarding hikes i have ever been on! the most beautiful scenes at the top, and this was not too hard of a trail. a MUST!

I live up here and this is my favorite hike to take especially when fall hits.

1 month ago

Offers a little bit of everything - modest climb, well maintained trails, water crossings, and a scenic view. Didn't find it to been too challenging, but was pleased to see very little trail traffic.

Really great hike. Good trail for beginners as there are not many difficult parts to it, but one is still rewarded with breathtaking views. I suggest going around noon or in the afternoon as in the morning the views are a little limited.

I must see what an adventure

Great hike especially with younger hikers. Awesome views and a real sense of you made it to the top for the young ones.

Clockwise is the easier route.

hiking
1 month ago

Nice hike in a beautiful State Park on a HOT summer day. Well marked but with 19 trees down across the trail none to difficult to maneuver.

Easy family-friendly hike even after all the rain we had. I went backwards through the trail. lt was a great idea because it was super muddy red clay starting out and ending up back at the start of the trail all the mud was gone!

The parking lot is big but fills quickly so arrive early. There is a short hike up switchbacks and stairs to get to the top quickly or a long gravel road to get there more easily but takes longer. I'm 60 and found the switchbacks to be easy and the best route. I went on an overcast day and found that visibility was 0 feet when I got to the many viewing areas along the SE face of the mountain. However, after lingering for 15 minutes the haze lifted and visibility stretched to the horizon after about 30 minutes. The main trail is well guarded by safety fences but the side trails are not so watch children. I'm posting the hazy pictures but also some unique photos of the mountain taken off-trail. There are many gated communities in the area but the shot of the mountain over the lake was taken on Whiteside Cove Road at 35* 04.035'N and 083* 07.194'W. The clear and sunny shots were taken at a place called "The Spa" along SR-64 between Cashiers and Sapphire. (It is a beautiful place that is not gated and the people were friendly.)

Nice family hike with our 15, 10 and 2 year old. A lot of hikers for A Friday morning. Easy hike up the gravel trail. Great views along the ridge line and nice hike down the other side. Once you reach the top, make sure you follow the trail to see the views along the ridge even if you come back down the gravel, easy trail.

horseback riding
1 month ago

Great for riding horses. Great short day trail!

horseback riding
1 month ago

Great horse trail. Only takes about 3 hours . Great day ride

pretty little, shady trail along the creek and perfect for dogs (and humans) in the heat/humidity. we walked along the creek to check out the group camps and canoe launches and retraced the trail back to stay near the water. lots of places to let the dogs cool off/hydrate in the creek all down the trail. it's a little taste of the mountains in the Piedmont.

Great short trail. We walked up via the gravel trail then back by way of the tougher trail. Gorgeous views! Definitely walk around Highlands and drive a short way (.5 miles) to see Dry Falls. Beautiful falls on the side of the road.

Great Short Distant hike! Beautiful views!! Read the informative signs. Very Cool!!

Great short hike with beautiful views!

2 months ago

One of my favorite hikes. A lot more big trees down across the trail since last time I had done it. Some were difficult for this short 65 yr old out of shape hiker to do in heat, but I was able to do the entire trail.

So beautiful following the fairy dust trails! Views clear as day!

We got up there right as clouds/fog rolled in, so we couldn't see anything. Notthe first time hiking trail thankfully. Beautiful views if the weather is good. Relatively easy trail with great views so expect heavy traffic on weekends/holidays.

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