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

9 waterfalls in the mountains of NC - 4 days & 3 nights

Waterfall Trail, NC Map
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Beautiful trail leading to very nice falls.

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!!

Really pretty and short - but definitely moderate (not easy) hike between the climb on the way back and the uneven surfaces. We were mostly alone mid afternoon on a Friday, but as we left we passed at least a bakers dozen of college students on their way in with (open on the trail) cheap beer, so perhaps less delightful late in the day on a Friday!

Beautiful falls! Worth the hike!

not easy. 1/2 mile but either up or down, no flat.

hiking
11 days ago

A super short hike if you’re trying to do something easy. The stairs are long in the beginning but immediately after that it’s flat ground and then you’ve made it. Went pretty early in the morning and still ran into quite a few people.

hiking
11 days ago

Ahhhhh... Back in the Appalachians. Despite my relatively high ratings of trails in (flat) Michigan and Florida, this one is qualitatively different. Superb. The system needs more than five stars so that I can nudge those others down a bit, but this is a real five-star trail. Pretty, well maintained despite its popularity, hilly, green and alive with a variety of flora and fauna, and punctuated with a lovely waterfall that’s a great place to watch people, to get wet, to picnic or hang a hammock, and to marvel at Nature’s creative paths and tableaux during her slow march forward. P.S. Remember to enjoy the drive along the Bluegrass Parkway with plenty of time for stopping at overlooks.

hiking
12 days ago

Great trail, beautiful waterfall

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.

hiking
15 days ago

nice waterfall!

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.

It’s a good hike to it but the terrain is kind of hard specially if you got kids with you! It takes a while to get to it! ...

hiking
18 days ago

Glen Falls is one of the most popular hikes near Highlands. For that reason, I’d say to avoid it if you are one that looks to avoid crowds. The falls are beautiful, but the sheer amount of people and dogs takes away from the enjoyment. If you go past the railing at the bottom and continue down the ‘trail’ it will put you out at the very bottom of the falls, which is a nice treat.

18 days ago

Fun little trail, very rocky as to be expected. Nice and scenic swimming area at the end. Fun but very, very crowded.

hiking
21 days ago

fantastic hike to a gorgeous waterfall...the hike in is a breeze because you go down hill most of the trail so coming out is a workout

21 days ago

Went last December just to kill some time. Pretty nice looking falls. Awesome icicles all around when we were there. Plenty of down trees and logs to climb on too. Definitely had the most people of all our hikes at this one. Kids enjoyed it.

21 days ago

Went here right after Christmas of 2017. Falls was half way frozen with massive icicles! Short “hike” but one of the best waterfalls around the area. Kids 7 & 4 absolutely loved this one.

walking
23 days ago

This is a pretty easy trail. Not thing special to look at, but has a cute swimming hole at the end. It is ALWAYS CROWDED. We used to go swimming here 20 years ago before it became a thing in any guide books and there really wasn’t a trail to follow. But we skip it now because it’s just not big enough for the crowds.

on Mingo Falls Trail

hiking
24 days ago

We love this waterfall. It is so beautiful any time of year. We go here frequently as we live in the area. There are around 170ish stairs to get here and it is a short hike. This is a must see for anyone visiting the Great Smoky Mountains area/NC area.

trails are very well maintained but it gets a little crowded. Nice place to take dogs as well

hiking
27 days ago

What a gorgeous waterfall where you can walk behind it and get cooled off. Easy stair walkway and easy access from paved parking lot. Such a great area, very green and lush surroundings. This would be a beautiful place to get married too!

hiking
29 days ago

Great little hike, stairs most of the way, bridge at the end of the trail for a great view of the falls. The entire trail runs along the stream, wonderful cataracts to hear and see.

hiking
1 month ago

What an incredible waterfall and a bit unexpected as you reach the bridge and witness this incredible natural beauty. This rainy year has made these waterfalls especially beautiful. An easy hike but about 160 stairs to climb. So worth the stair climbing.

Easy .4 walk just a lot of steps but beautiful, shaded walk up.Totally worth the amazing waterfall.

nature trips
1 month ago

When you get there, they have tons of parking area with a gift shop and bathrooms. The hike is easy but some is uphill. Beautiful views! They keep the area very clean and have wide trails. A lot of people go there! I'll be going back for sure!

hiking
1 month ago

Really enjoyed the hike to the falls. The trail is gorgeous, and the "obstacles" walking in and around rocks and tree roots made it interesting. Definitely not difficult, since we saw many people with young children during the hike. Took our two Chihuahuas along and they had no problem with the terrain. The falls at the end made the hike well worth it.

Steep steps towards bottom. Down all the way in, up reverse. One of the nicest falls in NC. Well worth the hike

hiking
1 month ago

Excellent trail. We hiked after a rain and it was muddy in places, but the waterfall was well worth the wait.

Awesome waterfalls. Easy trails.

Great trail. Lots of people though. Didn’t expect to be that crowded. Nice waterfall.

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