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

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Beautiful, easy hike to the falls. Great setting with easy, safe photo opportunities. This trail was active with many groups of hikers of all ages. We started our day with 3 Forks Trail Loop across the trail head and then ended with this hike to the falls. We are glad we made the extra effort to see the falls. Also appreciated that the loop we did first was quieter and less traveled. The two hikes together give the best of both worlds if you are fit enough to hike 7+miles in a day.

Everything about this hike was perfect. The drive to get there is a little longer but beautiful. We had no trouble approaching from Doublehead Gap, then the dirt service road to the trail, which we found to be well maintained. Beautiful hike with ample stream crossings and change of scenery as you cross over the ridge. We had enough energy to also hike to Long Creek Falls afterwards which added another two miles to our adventure. The falls are beautiful and worth the effort. A full and satisfying day.

My wife and I decided to try this trail out since it looked like it went out to the lake. We made it 2 miles out before we turned back because the trail was getting really close to people’s property and we didn’t feel comfortable being so close. Other than that, we enjoyed the trail very much. Be prepared for the elevation!

As others have mentioned this trail is not accurately described. The GPS track that looks like it is part of the trail is actually a dirt road that leads down to a small parking area that then leads out to the suspension bridge. This is also definitely not 9 miles, however we still had a nice walk with our dog in the areas that were less crowded and felt comfortable taking her off leash and exploring some of the other roads in the national Forest.

hiking
3 days ago

This trail has some very nice views. The view of the falls and the water is nice, as is the sight of the sun filtering through the trees. It's not long, but it is a bit steeper. There are numerous roots on the ground, so make sure to watch your step. The path is a bit narrow, and it can be a bit of a drop if you slip off. The water keeps everything damp and somewhat wet, and there are a few particularly steep sections that may be unstable. I fell just before the first overlook because the ground was muddy and gave way despite it not having rained there in a few days. Despite that, it is a very nice trip, and the bridge is fantastic.

on Amadahy Trail

3 days ago

This is a fairly easy, if lengthy, hike. Fair warning, being close to the water means everything is kind of damp, and there are a few soft spots here and there. Overall, though, there's some fantastic views of the lake, and a small beach-like area you can climb down to either for a rest or for a few good pictures. There are plenty of other little branches people have worn out that will take you to the edge of the water, as well, although they are a bit precarious. The trail is a bit narrow in spots, though, there are roots, and people like to ride bikes along it, so don't fall.

Perfect time of year to hike this trail! Beautiful colors and scenery. Recommend stopping mid-way and taking the steep little trek to the smaller falls before the larger falls . . . both are amazing!

Beautiful scenery.

mountain biking
9 days ago

Great trail. The track on the map takes a slightly different route than the new route taken on the trail, but it's pretty close. I'll try to upload a correct track next time I ride this route.

hiking
9 days ago

We were going to hike Flat Creek Loop, but we ran into some people that recommended Staley Gap for better views. It was a gorgeous fall day and the leaves were beautiful! We didn't do the whole hike- we did about 5 miles out and back. The hike was basically an gentle uphill climb until we reached a ridge at the top where the views were pretty looking out in both directions. We didn't meet anyone except a few bikers. Basically a walk in the woods - we usually prefer destinations, but the leaves were beautiful on November 3rd.

Love this trail! Easy and beautiful!

hiking
10 days ago

Fun quick trail to Waterfall with my Wife.

11 days ago

Good hike, but gets repetitive

Love everything about this place. The trails are marked well and the water falls were full of water due to recent rain. We were able to find trails for our level of ability.

Beautiful, decently maintained trail with some wonderful views. However, I can say the exact same thing about all the hundreds of other trails in the immediate area that don't charge you $10.

Why pay these people $10? They have nothing particularly special to offer.

Nice short trail with beautiful views. Careful of the rock and roots everywhere on the trail

Fabulous trails, stunning lake and falls!

October 15-16. This was rated hard and I agree. We hiked half a day stayed the night just after the “Cheesecake Factory “ water source but just before Tray Mountain shelter (we knew the shelter was going to be full, and wanted some peacefulness) we had a beautiful view. Watched the sunrise the next morning from our tent. I can’t say enough about this spot. Then hiked out. It was a great hike to test and challenge yourself.

Ps. If anyone could share WHY that water source is called “the Cheesecake Factory” please do.

Very nice trail! There are a number of trails in this area that crisscross, the trail is adequately marked with orange arrows on the metal forest service signs that are about 3 inches wide and 4 feet tall. Need to watch for them! The trail has been rerouted somewhat on the counterclockwise side. The trailhead is at the back left side of the parking area. Starts between a fence and The rooftop signboard. About 10 or 15 yards in the clockwise trail goes straight and the counterclockwise goes right, marked with Orange arrow on forest service sign.

Awesome trail with plenty to see and ample water sources.

trail to Jack's River falls. multiple creek fords. don't lose the trail! camping is allowed about a mile past the falls you have to Ford the river. great trail. will come back in summer

backpacking
24 days ago

Would definitely do this trail again.

I completed the trail on Oct 3, 2018. Some challenging ascend in certain sections but overall it was a good work out with some beautiful views. After multiple hikers asked me for wasp nest , I was eventually got stung by one and it hurt and last few days but its all part of the wilderness experience.
Since it was a week day, the trail was not crowded at all. I came across maybe 10 hikers and one gentleman who was there to maintain the trail.

hiking
27 days ago

This trail is just perfect for me. It is an easy trail, although I did get tired toward the end. Lots of great scenery. I hiked it with my son who is 34 years younger than me. He adjusted his pace so he could stay with me. He usually runs! Overall, a nice and enjoyable experience.

I feel like it should be rated Hard instead of Moderate! Lots of fun!

Our 2nd time hiking Jacks River in, and like last time the river crossings can get very slippery on the rocks with many crossings containing a moderately heavy current. We set up camp where Jacks River and Penitentiary Branch trails met, and took Jacks River Trail a little further all the way to the falls.

First time taking Penitentiary Branch Trail out and it was rough the next morning as it’s mostly incline. Saw bear droppings but luckily no bears! Lots of horse droppings on both trails.

Be mindful of nature and pick up after yourself if camping! Saw lots of plastic bottles, cans, and wrappers. :(

~19 miles total

Very unique hike with around 20 river crossings out and back. The trail is poorly marked and it is very easy to lose track. Follow the light green markings/ pink ribbons. The hike itself is easy up to the waterfall but gets harder and steeper after that, to the overlook. Went mid October and the shallow water was mid calf deep. Get ready to hike with wet shoes

Great trail, you will see bikers. Nice Creek crossings, easy trail to follow.

Beautiful, just beautiful

backpacking
1 month ago

We just hiked this on 10/10/18 . I can tell you that the trails are not clearly marked. the trail head does t even tell you your at conasauga river trail. it's just a big sign with a blurry map and you walk dow a road a little with a little wooden sign that just says trail. almost missed it. once you get to the river it is beautiful down there. but it's very hard to tell which way to go. we went left oops. haha wrong way came back after a pretty good distant walk. went right this time. found the trail most of the way think we crossed the river 5 times. before we couldn't see a trail anymore so we gave up found a camping spot and camped for the night. that was the night of hurricane Michael. well we woke up and the rover did rise quite a bit and was flowing fast so we decided to pack up and head back. Just wish the trails where clearly marked in some way. even with just marking tape . other then that we will be back to do it again!!!

Great trail with beautiful views. We stared at the Unicoi Gap trailhead next to the App Trail sign and logged 11.6 miles out and back.

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