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

Grandfather Mountain State Park Map
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hiking
22 hours ago

was super stoked to hike this trail today
the view from the top made it worth it for sure

*rocks on the trail were a little slippery and muddy but nothing too bad!

1 day ago

Great hike and beautiful seeing the sunrise. Just watch out for your early morning crazies. Went out before sunrise and heard a blood curdling scream. 3 people eventually emerged after the fact and told us they were "screaming at God." As far as I know no human sacrifices were made as we later found no bodies. Either way, mega creepy. Trail itself is beautiful

Awesome, awesome hike!! Although the mileage seems low, it is a very strenuous and technical hike. There are lots of ladders, cables, and big rocks that you have to climb up and over using your hands and feet (these were all reasons why I loved this hike, but maybe it's not for everyone!). The grandfather trail is an awesome mix of woods and walking along exposed rock faces which makes for a very dynamic hike and incredible views along the way! When I went (mid-late Sept) the leaves were just starting to change, but I bet in a few weeks (mid October) the colors will be amazing up there. Good hiking shoes with good traction are absolutely necessary - many spots of the trail were very wet/muddy when I hiked it yesterday (partly due to the hurricane, but regardless...) the steep/smooth rock faces can be very dangerous when wet, so the more traction the better. I saw a few people slip pretty bad wearing sneakers. I am a 23 year old in good shape, and a pretty experienced hiker. I hiked all the way to Calloway Peak (stopped for a bit to enjoy the amazing views at McRae peak on my way) and completed the full thing in 4 hours (this included a couple snack/water breaks and picture taking). The men at the gift shop said the hike to Calloway and back is usually completed in 5 hr for the average hiker (3 hr if just going to McRae and back). The $20 entree fee is of course a bummer, but in my opinion very worth it and they do a great job maintaining the trail (the ladders/cables are in great shape). If you are hiking on a weekend (I was there on a Saturday morning) be sure to get there early before they open (9 am) so join the line of cars that will already be forming. The parking lot all the way at the top that you will park at is right below the mile-high swinging bridge, so be sure to check that out once you finish your hike!

Great hike. Bit of a drive to trail head, but worth it. I'm a casual hiker and made it to top in 40 min. Hope to camp up there soon.

Easy of hike as it gets!

hiking
2 days ago

Cliff jumping!

hiking
4 days ago

One of my new favorites off the blue ridge parkway! So many spots to look out and see the 360 Mountain View’s!!!

One of my fav hikes in North Carolina. Have done it several times and several different routes. From Profile Trail to paying at entrance. Either way, worth the time and the money. I just remind myself that the money goes towards maintaining Grandfather Mountain! So I have no problem paying the fee!

Great hike, have done this a few times but this was the first time in the wet. Definitely not for children under 12 or so. After mile marker 2.5 it begins to get steep and the trail goes thru some small boulder fields which makes climbing difficult and with rain it can be even more dangerous. Be careful and have fun!

Great trip! Lots of beautiful scenery without being overly strenuous. Excellent for taking pics and for getting so exercise. My friend and I both have some injuries but were able to complete this hike without any problems. It's only an hour from my house, so I will definitely be doing it again!!

If you do the full loop you must cross the river twice and you will get wet. Lots of tree roots but a nice hike with great views of falls. I have dogs that enjoy the water and there were a couple of places for them to get in.

Super steep trail down and back up completely worth it

Finally a sunny day for hiking. Parked at Boulder Field pull off. Before starting we had decided to the end point would be Flat Rock View due to the added miles just to get to DB Scout Trail. At this point the Tanawah Trail is very narrow and since we've had a lot of rain lately it's pretty muddy. The Scout Trail is in pretty good shape but pretty wet also. Next time I'll head up from 221 which will be about the same distance as if you hike from Boone Forks parking area. This hike to Flat Top was 7.8 miles round trip.

Excellent workout. I've done this up and back in one day. The ladders with high winds are a bit unnerving, hold onto your hat and camera. Always worth every step.

This one has it all....great views, length, technical elements. Be prepared to spend several hours doing the hike if you're going to Calloway's peak and back. It joins the Grandfather Trail in time to get some of the best elements - the chute, the ledge and the alpine meadow...not to mention the peak. If it's been raining, the lower couple of miles gets pretty slippery due to the clay. The steps added to the new section (trailhead to where it joins the old trailhead) help with traction. Fantastic hike!!

This is the hardest trail I’ve ever done.
Do not attempt.
7 hrs on trail one way from Boone Fork, mm299 BRP to the swinging bridge.
Epic scenery.
I hiked Sept 10, mostly cloudy and rainy.
Wore only baggies and no shirt, was never cold.
I wore the most slippery loose fitting shoes I own.
(That makes you a better hiker)
The trail is difficult, wet, muddy, slippery, jagged, steep, large, exposed, with many slippery wooden off camber ladders and cables.
This is mountain climbing, not simply hiking.
I was boxed in with clouds and wet conditions, I never saw anyone else on trail.
It was perfect.
I hiked one way from Boone Fork parking lot on BRP to the swinging mile high bridge alone, 7 hrs.
Super scary ladders, wet ladders, very high exposed wood slippery ladders.
Difficult rock gardens.
Steep rock gardens.
Sharp steep jagged rock gardens.
A not ideal landing of an airplane from 1978, cause of incident “controlled flight into terrain”
I heard Bigfoot threatening me on trail.
I walked faster.
I was wet the whole time and muddy but never cold. I burned 7000 calories.
This route was hard.
Hard and scary.
All alone high in the Smokies.
With Bigfoot stalking me.
The bridge at Boone Fork and trailhead is closed, you will get a citation if you use the closed bridge, I brought beer and bacon.
Everything is better with bacon.
All is factual my ph 321-720-3034

awesome!!I would do it again!!

Favorite Hike in NC so far! Did it early September and it was nice and cool, a little rain which helped cool us off also! Did the profile trail to the grandfather which added some mileage but didn't have to pay, and then hitchhiked back to the profile trailhead from grandfather mountain!

hiking
14 days ago

my favorite trail yet

I thought it was strenuous coming back up. but I loved the trail and the falls!

hiking
16 days ago

Beautiful hike. Very vertical on the way up! Great workout.

hiking
17 days ago

This is THE best section of the Tanawha Trail (Rough Ridge to Wilson Creek). The views from the boardwalk and the summit are unrivaled along the Tahawha, and the underwood garden (about .25 miles south of the summit heading toward Wilson Creek) is amazing - flowing plants line the path with butterflies and hummingbirds everywhere. The trail as a whole can be moderately strenuous with abundant boulders and tree roots. If you're going to hike the Tahawha, this is a must-do.

Hard but worth it!

Trail closed at normal entry, took Tanawa trail from a further parking area. That added an extra two miles in and four total to the 11 hiked. Saw a bear track, but no bear. Great views at the top, the Peak was a smaller area to look around than I expected, but still worth it all the same. Several places to climb up and over rocks and just make sure you look to see where that next marker is at and hike towards it. I got off trail one time for sure, but it was easily marked over there too that got me back on track. Ladders in good shape. Always bring a poncho or rain jacket.

Started out as a simple down and back, see the Falls and climb back but there is so much more. While viewing the lower falls at 2 separate places which was great we saw people behind us at a much higher overlook. We climbed back to a midway point and began a .3 mile up to the top. Spectacular views from 2 different lookouts. You could see the bottom side of the falls as well as the downstream. Came back down and there is another midway point platform foe another great view. Kids were down at the bottom and apparently there is a lower parking lot that they are at ground level. This can be easy down and back but we did 2 miles overall and several stairs, up to the top view and the last hill to the parking lot was all we wanted especially after Hawksbill Mtn. This Falls surpassed all my expectations. Enjoy His presence.

Awesome hike. I would classify as moderate. Slow climb 1/2 way then steepens but not too difficult. At the approx. half way point you come to a sign directing you back to the parking lot. There are 3 paths to take. We went almost straight thru a narrow path down...wrong. The main trail is left. Looks like a large disappearing trail but it opens and continue up. Close to the top you come to another intersection. We went straight and climbed thru many rocks. We came back the other way which is easier. Take your pick and you can have a great lunch at the top. Spectacular view. Feel His presence!

Nice hike and view.

hiking
18 days ago

absolutely beautiful views. Well worth the hike! A must see

This was by far my favorite hike I have been on so far! It was tough but the view is incredible and completely worth it!

Went on Labor Day. It was ok. If you have a family with small children or some seniors, this is a good trail to the falls.
Falls weren’t terribly impressive and the trail was super busy, we had to stop and wait in line a few times to get passed some narrow parts. We were never alone on the trail. Maybe it’s different on non-holidays.

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