Explore Summer 2019 - view hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Summer 2019 Map
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Reviews (1,267)
Photos (2,116)
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Kristin Bach Dunlap reviewed Grandfather Trail
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarApril 9, 2021
HikingGreat!

This was exhilarating and the views were incredible!! The variety of climbing challenges were a blast! Some helpful hints: We decided to enter through the expensive side (Grandfather Mountain https://grandfather.com) at $22/head because the trailhead was right there instead of an additional 3+ miles away. Stupidly expensive AND you have to make a reservation. We couldn’t get a slot before noon and you must be back at lot at 5PM ... so we didn’t get to go as far as we wanted to. We started at Grandfather Trail Extension trailhead and our first amazing vista was McRaes peak. INCREDIBLE!!!! We traveled down and up to the next peak (Attic Window Peak) and then had to turn around. It was a great time! Best hike we’ve ever done. .... it’s just disappointing that it was so expensive. It used to be only $10.

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Matthew Riley reviewed Grandfather Trail
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarApril 8, 2021
Hiking

Awesome trail. Definitely on the tougher side so chose wisely with kiddos. Super fun with a few sections of climbing. Great viewpoints.

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Bill Fuller reviewed Grandfather Trail
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarApril 7, 2021
Hiking

Harder than thought. The All Trails trail did not pull this up correctly. After 0.6 we were off the Grandfather trail only on Macrae trail. Still beautiful and the ladders were a nice challenge. Perfect weather.

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Lynn Beyer-Mckamey reviewed Dells Canyon and Bluff Trail
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarApril 6, 2021
Hiking

Beautiful

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Cakki Namorato reviewed Grandfather Trail
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarApril 6, 2021
HikingGreat!

what an amazing, grueling, mentally challenging hike!! loved every heart racing second of it. having read many of the reviews, I didn't sleep much the night before as I don't like ladders or heights too much, but I pushed through it all and was rewarded with unbelievable views and a great sense of accomplishment. we took the Grandfather trail up (the series of ladders to get up to the first peak) and the Underwood trail back (lots of Boulder and a few ladders). give yourself plenty of time if you plan to go to the Calloway peak - we spent 5 and a half hours on the trail and made it back to the lot around 4:45 (15 minutes to spare). still some ice on the trail, but it was not too difficult to get around.

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William Atha reviewed Grandfather Trail
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarApril 5, 2021
Walking

Top notch trail, but not for everybody. Ladders, scrambles, and even in early April with 60 degree weather there were entire sections frozen. Make sure you hit the Wautuga overlook, and if you aren't to tired, go past Calloway peak to see the plane wreck. it's about three ladders after the Calloway peak. Take the blue all the way going, and take the yellow alternate on the way back for a rocky, but downhill return. Also, don't follow my recording. it's off!

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Cheryl Popielarz reviewed Dells Canyon and Bluff Trail
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarApril 5, 2021
HikingGreat!

Beautiful, fun, and family friendly good exercise! Most people respected social distancing!

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Rebecca Zirkel reviewed Dells Canyon and Bluff Trail
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarApril 3, 2021
Hiking

Love that the trails are not just a pea gravel path. A lot of fun things for the kids to explore.

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Nicholas Hill reviewed Grandfather Trail
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarApril 1, 2021
Hiking

Beautiful and brutal; all ice after ~4500'. Bring crampons.

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Kelly Hall reviewed Grandfather Trail
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMarch 30, 2021
Hiking

Quite the adventure - not for the faint at heart. Slow n Go will get you there and back. Take lots of water and rugged shoes.

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Radu Galis reviewed Grandfather Trail
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMarch 30, 2021
Hiking

Super fun trail, still some icey sections but manageable without spikes. Had a great time!

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Jin-Huon Jou reviewed Dells Canyon and Bluff Trail
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMarch 29, 2021
HikingGreat!

Fun! Beautiful with the setting sun. The dells part is a trip.

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Stephen Bleyle reviewed Dells Canyon and Bluff Trail
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMarch 29, 2021
Hiking
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Levi jason reviewed Dells Canyon and Bluff Trail
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMarch 27, 2021
Hiking
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Y Marie Marchal reviewed Dells Canyon and Bluff Trail
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarMarch 27, 2021
Hiking

Enjoyable place to hike with lots of places to explore. Little muddy after the rain so would recommend hiking boots if you go after the rain. Also, lots of stairs so be prepared to climb up and down them!

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Shanna Madsen reviewed Grandfather Trail
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMarch 26, 2021
Hiking
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Nicole Muffitt reviewed Dells Canyon and Bluff Trail
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMarch 25, 2021
HikingMuddy

Really fun and exciting trail! We embarked on our hike after a few days of rain, so the park was muddier than expected and the river ran high. Bring tall rainboots or water shows if you don't want to get your shoes wet! Part of the lower dells had a small landslide, and the reroute is difficult when wet. Have fun!!!

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Adam Heun reviewed Dells Canyon and Bluff Trail
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMarch 24, 2021
Hiking

Fantastic and beautiful adventure.

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Catherine Overstreet reviewed Grandfather Trail
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMarch 22, 2021
HikingFeeIcyMuddyRocky

Stunning and a little scary! Know before you go- as mentioned in previous reviews, wear boots or good sneakers. Definitely wait until late spring to go because 30-40% of the trail was frozen. I made it to the peak and a little ways down but decided to turn back when I came across one of the rock faces frozen solid. This is a strenuous trail as described, but a conditioned hiker shouldn’t have a problem in warmer weather. The ladders are highly underrated on the descriptions. There are 7-8 leading to Macrae Peak. Some of these ladders have some significant drops below, so if heights freak you out just be aware. I don’t personally have a phobia relating to heights, but I was clinging to the ladders going up and down. This is one of the most spectacular views of the Blue Ridge Mountains you can see. At the peak it smells like a Christmas tree farm as the smell of pine is whisped around by the breeze.

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Kris Reuter reviewed Dells Canyon and Bluff Trail
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMarch 21, 2021
Hiking

great starter hike for the beginner I had with me today.

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Heather Hundley reviewed Dells Canyon and Bluff Trail
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarMarch 20, 2021
HikingGreat!

Fun and rugged! Make sure to wear water proof shoes for all the water crossings

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Natalie Aya Clamp reviewed Grandfather Trail
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMarch 20, 2021
HikingIcyMuddyRocky

One of the most challenging, breathtaking hikes I’ve ever been on. A few tips: 1. Hiking boots. Please do not attempt this trail with regular sneakers. 2. No dogs (I mean, obviously), 3. Plan ahead-a solid plan of what you want to do. This trail definitely requires respect. On the day I went, it was cold, foggy and rainy. After talking to somebody coming down who told me it was icy at Calloway Peak and they wish they had micro spikes, I deviated and decided to just do MaCrae which I’m so happy I did! 4. Evaluate hiking levels: I brought my husband and boys along (ages 8, 12 and 14). We hike often so although I was a bit anxious, we went together and had a great time. With three ladders left my boys stayed back and I didn’t push them to go further. The views, although foggy was beautiful. Felt like i was in heaven! Enjoy it!

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Mark Baumhardt reviewed Dells Canyon and Bluff Trail
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMarch 20, 2021
Hiking
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Jessica Shull reviewed Dells Canyon and Bluff Trail
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMarch 19, 2021
Hiking

It rained buckets the day before so the waterfalls were amazing! But some parts of the canyon trail had too much water so we couldn’t cross and had to double back. We didn’t mind, it was beautiful. Perfect weather, sunny day and just what my heart needed. Can’t wait to come back in a month or two when the flowers are blooming!

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Lesya Estrada reviewed Grandfather Trail
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMarch 17, 2021
HikingFeeGreat!

Breathtaking views at the top and very worth it. Requires strong knees and the ability to climb ladders. $22 per person admission to get to the trailhead.

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