Explore the most popular birding trails in Chimney Rock State Park with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Beautiful views.

Short hike, but there are lots of stairs which make it a fairly strenuous hike/walk. However, you will be rewarded with beautiful and unique views from Chimney Rock.

Enjoyed the hike. Took the smaller kids and they made it just fine. We headed for the trail but didn’t realize it was inside the park so we got to experience the whole park as well. Fees to get in are a little higher than should be. But all in all a good time. The falls were nice but employee on duty at falls so couldn’t cross border to get in water. Was our first trip to Chimney Rock so was well worth the day. Lookouts were nice.

18 days ago

Heck of a climb but a great reward!

you will feel.very accomplished once you get up there. The views are amazing! Does require a level of fitness as the rating suggests. Reward yourself with ice cream at the restaurant up there. Tastes even better at a higher altitude!

Nice hike

Okay trail would be best in fall so you could have a clear view to the Rock faces and such. Also watch out for snakes. I came across about a 5 to 6 foot long eastern diamond back rattle snake coiled up in the center of the small path. very big snake and he blended in very well. didn't know he was there till I was right on top of him rattling his tail and hissing. Lots of ticks on my dog afterwards as well. cool cave and nice rocks to climb.

The chimney rock state park was closed and this was only area open to hike. Nike hike through trees, few inclines, very enjoyable, a few rock steps but very manageable. Will go back to explore more trails. This is only one you don’t have to pay to hike, that is what I understood
Access to more difficult rocks and huge boulders, not for me

Took the stairs from the parking area bs then did the Exclamation and Skyline. Lots of steps and very little hiking but the views are awesome. The Skyline trail is mundane though.

Difficult trail but its so worth the views, and you'll climb many stairs to get to this level. Beautiful sites and natural wonders.

2 months ago

Beautiful waterfall just a short distance and an easy walk, just round trip of 1.5 miles. Nice wide path for a leisurely walk.

Yes, the fees are higher than normal for a state park, ($15/person/adult), but there is a reason.

Holy cow! This place is amazing, and if you are going to go more than once, get the annual pass for $28/person/adult.

I believe people when they say that it can get crowded here - why wouldn't it!? Our personal experience was that we entered the park around 2:30 on a Thursday in July. Not crowded. Waited for the shuttle bus to take us to the top. The shuttle bus was full when it unloaded, but only 20 of us on it to the top. Didn't have to wait for the elevator.
Hiked to Hickory Nut Falls. Many people coming down the trail. We were the only ones going up. Arrived at the Falls. We were 2 of 7 people there. Had ample time to explore and photograph. Magical.
Hiked down Four Seasons Trail to the parking lot when we realized we still had time before the park closed (7PM). Going down Four Seasons Trail is easy.

Amazingly, the park is dog friendly. They provide poop bags at random spots. There are more recycling bins and trash receptacles along the trails than I have ever seen in a park. Trails are wide and well kept. The entrance fee is at work everywhere. Highly recommend. Will be back.

I think the fees to enter the park are outrageous.

Nice spot, but it can be a bit crowded. There is a fee to get in, but it's reasonable especially considering all the other things you can do in the park. Waterfall is alright.

Best views from the top of Chimney Rock (where the flag is). All wood steps to the top. Continue on the stone steps to exclamation point for views of the Gorge. If you want to continue further Skyline trail (dirt path) will take you another 2 miles to the top of the waterfall. The hardest part of Chimney Rock are the 500 steps to the flag pole, another 300ish to Exclamation Point. Elevator is back in service. Weather will cause trail closings. Call ahead...Park is known to have trails down without notice and still charge full price.

Not much of a trail, all man-made stairs. Beautiful view at the top, though.

Beautiful hike to beautiful falls. Kids made it easily

3 months ago

Loved this trail, some areas that you would definitely need to keep an eye on kids. No rails and some very steep drop offs along the way. Love the waterfall, and the fact you could enjoy getting in so I would bring a towel, swimming attire, and water shoes. Be in the look out for snakes seen 2 the day we hiked. Overall LOVE this trail!

Nice clearly marked trail. Can see dramatic evidence of the 2017 forest fires. Bolder fields are interesting. The stairs to the top can be treacherous when wet. Overall a very pleasant experience.

3 months ago

Go anywhere else in the state if you want to see waterfalls. We were shocked to find out that the fee is $15 per adult and $7 per child just to enter the park.

Fees are set by a private company that the state lets manage the park. As far as we can tell, it’s the only state park in NC with such fees.

Want a better waterfall hike that won’t cost an arm and a leg? Check out upper Bradley Falls, which is fee and a lot closer to Asheville.

Really nice climb out and back. Gorgeous waterfall and the kids took a dip in the pools at the waterfall base. Beautiful! We took the connector trail down to the parking lot...it was a great little hike. Lots of stairs going down.

This short hike which is mostly comprised of stairs will take you to the top of the Chimney rock. Best views though can be seen from the Opera box and the Devil’s Head which are only a few extra stairs away. As of May 2018, the elevator is still out of order.

A. This is after you’ve hiked to Chimney rock. Not vice versa.
B. It’s not a hike. It’s 99.99% stairs with maybe 50’ in total of dirt.
C. View is beautiful.
E. Elevator still broken.

Short easy hike to a spectacular waterfall! Wish I’d planned better and brought a picnic!

First, we took the Outcroppings trail - the view from chimney rock is great. Beware, it is literally pure stairs (I personally don't consider that a "hike"). It is also extremely windy up there (at least, it was today). We went on to the exclamation point trail, which led to exclamation point. Another nice view, but again, almost entirely stairs - not real "hiking" for me. From there, we took the skyline trail. Finally, we were off wood stairs and on the ground. Peregine's point from this trail allows for a beautiful lookout. The end of the trail is totally underwhelming - you can see some little waterfalls through the trees. If I did it again, I would turn around at Peregine's point, personally. Overall, not a bad trip, but I probably would not visit again.

Took my husband and 3 dogs. The "hike" was almost entirely stairs (not a real hike to me). You're basically trapped on the stairs and it's pretty heavily trafficked. The view was cool. Overall a nice experience, but I wouldn't do it more than once.

Skyline is hardly worth the walk, and our least favorite in the park (id rate it a 2 out of 5 for “ worth it “ points) . That being said, exclamation point is very pretty and worth the extra effort!

Great view. Heavily trafficked.

Went in the early spring, 70 degrees and sunny. Trail is well maintained with lots of gravel. The falls are beautiful. Had it been a little bit later in the season we would have all tried to get in. Tip: bring a towel so you have the option to go in.

Nice gradual climb to massive cascade-type waterfall. Definitely best to come in the spring or after a good rain; otherwise the waterfall will be a waterdrip. Good hike provided you did not already use up all of your energy climbing to Chimney Rock.

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