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

To-do Map
VIEW FULL MAP

Gorgeous fall! Powerful and no hike required! We did venture down the rocks to get a few more photos - it is super slippery!

I've hiked this trail twice now and it's probably my favorite on the east coast. It's definitely not for the inexperienced or out of shape, but the grueling path is more than worth it. The MacRae Peak path features stunning view after stunning view. Make sure to give yourself plenty of time to take them all in and enjoy the fantastic vistas in all directions. The ladder climbs and rock scrambles can be nerve-racking but are a lot of fun at the same time. I took the Underwood Trail on the way back down which is a bit less strenuous and having gravity on your side makes the going a bit easier. It's easy to see pictures and hear from others about the sights along the way, but one thing you have to experience firsthand is the smells on the trail. You're hiking in a mostly alpine environment and the conifers give a refreshing piney scent for almost the whole way; it's like walking through a christmas tree farm.

Great little trail with gorgeous views at/near the top. We took our dog and our 2&3 year old. They are little climbers and did great but the trail is very thin for a good portion of it and 99% the bikers are flying down hill not yielding to pedestrians as the sign says they are supposed to so we had to yank my girls off the trail several times(with no apologies by the bikers) and they were scared of bikers by the end of it. I would do this again alone because of the view and hike but without the kids and dog because the bikers make it dangerous.

Breath taking views from the top! Slippery when wet, gets real muddy in the rain. Wear appropriate shoes.

This trail delivered just what I was looking for as far as being a bit challenging but nothing crazy and the payoff at the top was amazing ! I went on a Sunday morning , on the way up it was only minimally busy, the rock itself was pretty crowded and on the way back down around 1pm was very heavily trafficked and SO MANY off leash dogs, which would have been fine as long as you don't have a dog reactive dog with you, as my friend did . I would not suggest bringing a dog unless it is extremely well trained and non dog reactive because it appears that off leash dogs on this trail is a big thing .

I would totally do this hike again but probably on a weekday or a colder day to avoid the crowd.

An exciting hike! We went in November and the path was so icy we almost turned around a few times. The views were worth it! We took grandfather trail up and Underwood back down, made for a great loop!

not horribly difficult. it's is almost completely uphill on the outward leg. lots of springs so the trail gets pretty wet. We did it in tennis shoes and had no issues. amazing view at the end.

Not much solitude, but good for a workout and a good scenic view at the end.

This hike is much longer than stated. we clocked almost 14 miles. This is difficult and very strenuous! The view is worth it, but make sure you begin early enough and bring snacks!

hiking
10 days ago

Very good for endurance training

Words can’t describe it!

If you don’t want to spend all day hiking this trail...you can drive to the summit and enjoy the same views. The hike wasn’t worth it after finding this little tid bit out. Also...almost got mauled by a bear.

This is a really nice 1/2 day hike. The payoff at the end with the view is really beautiful, especially in the fall. Definitely would suggest making that your lunch spot. I would rate this moderate not hard, at least when comparing it to some other hikes in the region such as table rock. That being said however, it is overall an upwards gradient just about the whole time, but the switchbacks in the first half are generally pretty smooth and gradual which is why I rate it more moderate (I saw young children making it to the top...albeit it took them extra time). Lots of dogs in the trail. It took us 1 hour 20 minutes to get up with one short water break, stayed at the view for about an hour, and then took 1 hour 10 minutes to come back down. Trail was pretty busy, but did go on a Saturday.

absolutely beautiful trail. overnight tent camping at the top. make sure you wear good hiking shoes or boots the trail can get slippery. HIKE THIS TRAIL you won't regret it.

Hiked this with my 7 year old; took about 3 hours. We both loved it! Got a little nervous go be up so high at the summit with just the kiddo, dog and me; but a good opportunity to teach safety. It was beautiful, especially during leaf season. I would not rate this trail as hard; more moderate than anything. My son and I even trail ran the last mile.

Gorgeous trail and views

Great short hike, but I would not rate it as easy. You are still hiking up a mountain. Good for most skill levels, but if you are out of shape you will struggle a bit.

Hands down the most fun trail I have ever hiked! Extremely strenuous, so be careful. My only problem is I hate that you have to pay so much to get to the main trailhead. You can access it from the parkway, but it becomes a pretty long day hike.

hiking
13 days ago

Hiked this trail November 1st just before cold front came through. 3 things about this trail-rocky , rooty and windy, well marked and maintained.. Need good hiking shoes at a minimum, poles optional, and bring layered clothing with wind breaker , gloves and hat a must as it gets nippy at top . Can be a challenge if not in at least average shape. Plan on 5-8 hours round trip. Well worth doing and you get the pleasure of knocking off the highest peak east of the mighty Mississippi.

hiking
13 days ago

Question: the 10 miles it says it is, is this total? or each way?

hiking
15 days ago

This trail was nice! There were a lot of rocks which made it more difficult but it wasn’t the worst rocky hike I’ve ever done. When we went it was extremely foggy and couldn’t see a whole lot.... however we did hike the additional 3.6 miles to Douglas Falls and it was beautiful!

Excellent easy hike. Love this place and so does the dog!

Lots of fun. Very well marked and the ladders are a blast. The view from the top of McRae is fabulous. We went up the Grandfather trail and back down Underwood. Underwood is much more in the woods and bit more rocky/rooty. You get much better vistas from Grandfather trail, though it was fun doing both of them. The trail past McRae peak is a less travelled, as many seem to turn around at McCrae.

Amazing view as everyone said. Took me 2hr 50 min out and back. I'll take it considering I'm a bit out of shape. lots of dogs and can be very muddy after rain.

Not a hike but it is a pretty waterfall!

Nice spot to stop at if you want to stretch your legs and enjoy a wonderful view.

This is my favorite trail. It is a bit treacherous, especially for an old guy like me. I don’t go on it after heavy rain as it is slippery and mistakes could be costly. But it is beautiful and dramatic and fun.

A must hike!!! Awesome vistas!

Load More