Explore The 4th - view hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

The 4th Map
VIEW FULL MAP

I love this trail! I used to hike it as a kid and remember enjoying all of the water areas to play in along the way up the mountain. It's definitely a workout, but such an incredible view at the top. So worth it!!

If you are looking for an easy trail that gives great 360 views- this is one of the best in that regard

Amazing views, multiple peaks, and an easy to follow trail. Highly recommended.

Absolutely fabulous hike! Not really difficult, but can be a little muddy and slippery at parts. I highly suggest going all the way to the turtleback waterfall. Also, try going on the rocks (dry ones) that are a little bit off-path to get really good shots. We were warned about copperheads, but did not encounter any.

hiking
3 days ago

I hiked this trail last year and the hike is short but the end with the views are beautiful.

Great trail. With all the rain I would definitely have some shoes that handle mud and water really well. A lot of the trail is shaded so it was very wet. I loved it though.

Awesome trail. Trails aren’t marked but easy to navigate and all trails was spot on. Did this hike after a few days of heavy rain. Art Loeb was wet but easy to avoid dunking your feet. Investor Gap was a creek as others reviewed. Felt longer than 3.9 miles, but maybe due to the extra steps over the rain runoff. A great variety of terrain and views were amazing; will do this again for sure.

Fun hike! Went after a rain storm so the trail was super muddy but not very crowded. Under the rainy/muddy conditions, the trail was more of a moderate hike. Lots of rocks at the end just before the gorgeous falls!

It is pretty! We went on a Saturday so crowded and it rained, so really muddy! More on the moderate side than easy. Had toddler with us that couldn’t be carried up the last steep rocky portion to the falls. Had view though!

Take this trail which connects with the John Rock loop trail for some spectacular views! Much less crowded than the Looking Glass Rock trail and still with beautiful scenery. Park at the Pisgah Wildlife Education center and pick up a trail map- very well marked and maintained.

Bring a trash bag and take some styrofoam out with you! After all the flooding the falls are surrounded by little bits of it. If we don’t take it out, it’ll stay there.

on Craggy Pinnacle Trail

hiking
8 days ago

Great short hike to the summit from the parking area. You ascend around 400ft over 3/4 mile so not to bad. The trail is dirt and rocks. Great views at the top.

on Waterrock Knob Trail

hiking
9 days ago

This is a great hike and it’s a half mile to the top. It is steep and you ascend 480 ft in that half mile. The first half is paved and the second half is a dirt/rock stair trail. About half way up at the end of the paved trail is a viewing platform(if you don’t want to make the trek to the top).

Went after a heavy rain and waterfalls was amazing!!

Beautiful scenic hike. Waterfall at top is gorgeous. Many areas of the trail were very muddy.

Wonderful!!!! Lots of falls, lots of shade. Easy hike and lots of places to stop and enjoy the water. Go up the ropes— you won’t regret it! Just stick nearest to the water once you’re up past marker 3 so you don’t get lost!

Great trail. Easy for kids. Beautiful falls with lots of areas to get your feet wet or take a little dip. Very crowded. Will try to go during the week next time.

Great little trail! There are three or four areas that are moderately difficult to traverse but overall very relaxing. You cross three wet areas. To stay dry you have to cross some rock areas but overall very nice. Great reward at the end!

This trail starts in Gorges State Park (but eventually leaves the park property). Drive past the Visitors Center and down the hill to the large, paved parking lot. Downhill from the trailhead the trail splits - left is the Raymond Fisher Trail and right is the Rainbow Falls Trail. Go right. On the trail there are two creek crossings. The first is a shallow and easy two stepper but the second is a deeper six stepper. I made it across without poles. Rainbow Falls has two nice viewing areas (one farther away to take in the full view and one up close to feel the mist). Turtleback Falls is where all of the swimmers go to slide down the falls. There is no formal viewing area there but the large boulders are easy to climb and navigate and afford great views. Both waterfalls are particularly picturesque.

The only downside was the rapid influx of obscuring clouds once we reached the top....after a few minutes, the Parker my lot was not visible, along with everything else. But what a view we had before the clouds engulfed us! Loved this!

One of my favorite hikes. Busy in the summertime, but well worth it for how short it is!

Very peaceful and well shaded hike. There are not any views from this trail however you can easily go to the John Rock trail around the half way point and find some.

Great hike with beautiful views of the waterfalls.

So fabulous that we come back every year!

Great hike to see two amazing waterfalls, Rainbow Falls and Turtelback Falls. Moderate to strenuous 3.9 mile trail beginning at Gorges State Park. Rainbow Falls is a super beautiful fall and incredible to see, while Turtelback is a great swimming hole area and water slide for the adventurous.

Great family hike! Moderate difficulty - mostly downhill to the falls so more difficult on the return. Bring water shoes if you plan to take a dip at the base of either falls . We slid off turtleback falls (which is not for the faint of heart) - and we swam at the base of rainbow falls. Lots of hikers and swimmers today.

backpacking
19 days ago

When you enter the Fish Hatchery park immediately to your left in the large parking lot. The trailhead begins there to the far left if you want to do Cat Gap Loop Trail clock-wise. The Trail is very narrow in the beginning but opens up somewhat. Lots of roots and rocks, streams and mud so this is definitely a Moderate Trail. Blaze signage is sorely lacking and I only saw it for the first few trees at the beginning then nothing! Eventually you will reach the right branch to John Rock Loop which is pretty darned steep and long but like everyone else says the view is worth it. The pics you take will not even come close to looking like the real thing. It’s a 10/10 awesomeness. It took us about 90 mins to get to the top and 60 back - we retraced our path as we didn’t have enough energy to complete the entire Cat Gap Loop this time around.

The Rainbow falls trail was amazing. Plenty of waterfalls to be seen, a few are found off the main trail. The actual trail is wide enough to hike in groups. There are a ton of swim holes, as long as you are down from Rainbow. The main attraction is a great waterfall with a large cliff and high walls next to it. Trees appear to have been cut down to block the trail to the top of the falls, and signs are posted for safety. Over all a great day of hiking, swimming, and picture taking.

Good trail.

Nice trail. The waterfalls are gorgeous but the trail to the upper isn’t well marked. Never saw a blaze and went off the path for a little bit. Fortunately there are a ton of people who you will run into at some point to redirect.

Load More